The announcement that the Yankee’s big lefty, Andy Pettitte, has decided to retire from baseball gives Red Sox Nation another reason to cheer. Pettitte’s retirement feels like the final out in the Red Sox Winter World Series Sweepstakes. Let’s hope that the regular season works out as well.
Despite Pettitte’s unfortunate association with the Yankees, you have to like and admire the man. Always a worthy opponent and powerful presence on the mound, his off-the-field persona is one of class and dignity. With his soft-spoken Texas charm, he is easy to like. Even the stigma of being a past HGH user has not stuck to him due to his honest admission of its use. (See Roger Clemens.)
Pettitte admitted to reporters on the day of his retirement press conference that he did not feel the fire burning anymore. Like our own Mike Lowell, Pettitte said he wants to spend more time with his wife and family before his children are grown.
Much to Pettitte’s credit, the Yanks will be diminished by his absence while the rest of the American League East will be bolstered.
Should Pettitte end up coming out of retirement for one more run at the World Series, his stature will be diminished in my eyes. I do not just say that because I am a Red Sox fan. It is more as a fan of baseball that I do not want to see him return. He stated his case so eloquently and as a personal decision for his family. If he were to change his mind, what are we to think about him then? Indecision is so unattractive. (See Brett Favre.)
Enjoy your “retirement”, Andy Pettitte, until you figure out what to do with the rest of your life. Thanks for the memories – the good ones and the bad ones – and for the history you have etched into America’s game.
Andy Pettitte may be done with baseball, but I have a feeling baseball is not yet done with Andy Pettitte.