Longtime Arizona Diamondbacks reliever Brad Ziegler retired via Twitter today after 11 MLB seasons.
There aren’t too many ballplayers classier than Arizona Diamondbacks’ legend Brad Ziegler. Though he didn’t have eye-popping stuff, he carved out a niche as a relief pitcher and always was a positive role model on and off the field. Now, 11 years after coming up with the Oakland A’s, the right-handed pitcher is officially hanging up his spikes.
Via Twitter, Ziegler announced his retirement on Wednesday (his 39th birthday), complete with a gigantic essay and a list of his favorite MLB moments.
The fact that he took the time to write such an in-depth essay says a lot, yet that’s not even the most impressive part of his sign-off. Instead, I was blown away that, after posting, he took even more time to thank a lot of folks who replied to his tweet (not just verified accounts, either).
Ziegler, who returned to Arizona this year after spending two years with Boston and Miami, was named to the Diamondbacks 20th Anniversary team this year after several stellar seasons in their bullpen. In total, the submarine pitcher appeared in 377 games with Arizona and 739 games overall. This year, his 82 appearances led the NL, making it the second time he’s achieved the honor. Back in 2013 — also as a member of the Diamondbacks — he led the NL with 78 appearances.
Among the highlights listed in his farewell post, Ziegler mentioned the 2011 NL West-winning D-Backs squad — “playoff baseball is incredible,” he said — as well as his time with Team USA during the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
Although it was a bummer that Arizona fell short of the postseason this year, I’m sure Ziegler is happy he was able to end his 11-year career in the city where he had his best years. Yes, he will be missed but I’m sure he’ll pop up at Chase Field at some point during their annual alumni games.