With the unofficial announcement yesterday that Jorge is hanging it up rather than trying to play for another team this season, I felt a pang in my gut. Not because JoPo’s retirement is a surprise; we all knew he’d go out in a Yankee uniform, especially after the dismal year he had. But because his leaving the scene is yet another goodbye we have to deal with. No more Core Three now. We’re down to Core Two.
And not for long, I believe.
Mo is recovering nicely from his throat surgery, apparently, and says he’ll tell the media at spring training whether this season will be his last. My guess is he’ll join the others in retirement.
I have a feeling he’ll want to avoid the Posada Fiasco (and the Bernie confusion) and choose to leave the game on a high note. What’s more, I think the situation with his polyps (thank God they were benign) and his recovery may have given him pause about the grind of another 162+ games. Does he need to keep pitching? No. His HOF credentials are established. His records are unassailable. He has all the money and steakhouses he needs. It’s time to move on.
Of course, just typing those words about my favorite Yankee makes my heart sink. But I know it’s coming. I should start buying Kleenex by the case.
On a happier note, pitchers and catchers are just around the corner.