Los Angeles (AFP) – Houston Astros slugger Carlos Beltran announced his retirement from baseball on Monday, just two weeks after crowning a 20-year career with a maiden World Series victory.
The Puerto Rican outfielder, who forged a reputation for delivering in the postseason and earned the nickname “Mr October”, announced his decision on The Players’ Tribune website.
“I am blessed to have played this game for 20 years,” Beltran, 40, wrote.
“I am blessed to have played for so many great organizations.
“I am blessed to have shared all of my experiences with my wife and my three kids, my family and friends…And I am blessed to be a champion.
“But now, my time as a player has come to an end. Today, I am officially announcing my retirement.”
Beltran’s career began with the Kansas City Royals in 1998, where he played for six years before heading to Houston for a season in 2004.
The nine-time All-Star was a peripheral figure during the World Series win over the Los Angeles Dodgers, making just three plate appearances in three games, going 0-3.
Beltran said he had set out to try and help the younger players in the Astros locker room during their pursuit of the World Series this season.
“I had always dreamed about winning a championship, and I chased every opportunity to do so in my career,” Beltran wrote in his essay, titled “Muchas Gracias, Beisbol.”
“But I never thought that I needed to win a World Series to make my career complete. I realized early on that my purpose in this game was to share knowledge with younger players and to give back to the game of baseball,” he wrote.
“I always wanted to do that — that, and be the best teammate I could possibly be. Over 20 years, I feel like I accomplished that. So whether we won or lost game seven, I would have still been happy with my career.
“But it still feels nice to have a ring.”
Beltran’s career saw him win the American League’s Rookie of the Year award in 1999 as well as three Gold Glove and two Silver Slugger Awards. He also won the 2013 Roberto Clemente Award.
He finished with 435 home runs in his career while accumulating 2,725 hits.