37 years old Mike Napoli has announced his retirement on Twitter, Napoli, who had suffered significant knee injuries in the last calendar year, originally planned to try again after completing the rehabilitation process, but decided "after much thought" to end the decision.
Napoli, an all-star and 2013 World Series champion of 2011, will be remembered for a long time with his upcoming moon shots, magnetic personality and coveted clubhouse presence, and a supernatural eye on the plate. Napoli's career spanned 12 major league seasons, featuring seven playoff teams, three pennant winners and 2013 World Champion Boston Red Sox.
The Catcher / First Baseman collected a total of 5,397 plate appearances for four teams, including three stints at the Texas Rangers, for which his 2011 season (.320 / .414 / .631, 179 wRC +) was among the best counted in the club's history. Overall, Napoli appeared in nearly 1,400 major league games, falling by .246 / .346 / .475 with 267 HR careers and an offensive performance that was about 20% above average. His fWAR of 25.1 is an excellent result for a player who has never been one of the Top 10 prospects for his organization at any point in his minor league career.
Napoli was selected from a Gymnasium in Florida in the 17th round of the draft in 2000 and began his career with a slow burn at the Anaheim / Los Angeles Angel farm system. When he finally reached the majors in 2006 after almost seven full seasons with minors, the then catcher did not waste time making a name for himself. With his 2.5 fWAR in only 99 games he is a rookie catcher and stands with his 92 HR behind the courts.
Continuing friction with skipper Mike Scioscia, who never seemed to be satisfied with Napoli's work, resulted in Napoli moving into a bizarre move with the Blue Jays in 2011, where the prolific backstop was traded with outfielder Juan Rivera in exchange for aging Vernon WellsWith his four years and a remaining salary of $ 90 million, he was on the list of the least attractive assets of the game. Napoli was quickly shipped to Texas, where he established himself in 2011 as one of the best players in the game. However, a strong decline followed, and the then first baseman found a new home in Beantown for the next three seasons.
After the championship run of 1313 and a solid follow-up next season, an older Napoli spit out a bit in 15 and stayed in search of a new home before the start of the 2016 season. He found it in Cleveland, where a final hurray – a career height of 34 HR for the pennant-winning tribe – left him within seconds of a second ring.