While Josh Beckett didn’t quite announce his retirement following the Dodgers’ loss in the NLDS Tuesday, he doesn’t appear prepared to continue his career following hip surgery.
“I just don’t see me going through that rehab and coming back to pitch at this point in my life,” he told MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick.
According to Gurnick’s report, Beckett intends to undergo hip surgery in May, which seems rather odd. That single quote from Beckett is the only one in Gurnick’s story. If Beckett is really planning to undergo surgery seven months from now, then it surely would rule him out for 2015 anyway. And this is hardly the first hint that he’s done, so, yeah, the odds are good that Beckett never pitches again.
That’s a shame, too, because Beckett is just 34, and he had a 2.88 ERA in 20 starts this season before his hip forced him to the disabled list. If this is it for him, he ends his career 138-106 with a 3.88 ERA and 1,901 strikeouts in 2,051 innings. He was a two-time world champion with the Marlins in 2003 and the Red Sox in 2007. In the latter season, he won 20 games and finished second in the Cy Young balloting.
Beckett certainly earned those championships, too. He had a 2.11 ERA in 42 2/3 innings for the Marlins during their run in 2003. In the NLCS, he pitched a two-hit shutout in Game 5 against the Cubs and allowed one run in four innings of relief in Game 7 three days later. He then pitched a shutout in Game 6 of the World Series to finish off the Yankees.
In 2007, Beckett won all four of his starts for the Red Sox, throwing a shutout versus the Angels in the ALDS and striking out nine over seven innings in Game 1 of the World Series. He wasn’t needed again because the Red Sox swept the Rockies.
Beckett’s performance this year, his best since 2011, included his first career no-hitter against the Phillies on May 25.