End of the line for Chipper Jones

In 1995, Chipper Jones led all major league rookies in RBI (86), games played (145), games started (123), plate appearances (602), at bats (524) and runs scored (87). He also finished second that season for the Rookie of the Year award behind Dodgers’ pitcher Hideo Nomo.

Fifteen years later, Jones appears ready to hang ‘em up for good.

Dave O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution hasn’t confirmed the news, but writes via his Twitter page that he’s heard from two people that Jones is set to announce his retirement at the end of the season. If he does, he’ll leave baseball with six All-Star selections, two Silver Slugger Awards, one NL MVP trophy, one NL batting title and a World Series ring on his career resume.

It shouldn’t be a shock to anyone that Jones plans to retire. After batting .264 and committing more errors than any third baseman in baseball in 2009, he thought about hanging up his cleats last year. Thanks in part to a finger injury, he hasn’t hit well this season either and it appears that he knows the writing is on the wall.

If he does decide to retire, something that I’ll always miss about Chipper is his consistency. He’s never posted awe-inspiring power numbers, yet he usually posted between 25-40 home runs during his prime. His career batting average is also over .300, which is still more impressive to me than a player that finishes his career with 600 home runs. As far as anyone knows, he’s also never been accused of taking steroids either.

Considering the era he played in, that should gain him unwavering respect in most fans’ eyes.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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