Deer Park High School alum and former Astro Andy Pettitte has announced that he will retire at the end of the season. Pettitte and the Yankees are hosting the Giants tonight at Yankee Stadium and the 41-year old made it official by addressing the media there at 2:30 this afternoon.
The Yankees released a statement earlier today that included the following quote from Pettitte.
I’ve reached the point where I know that I’ve left everything I have out there on that field. The time is right. I’ve exhausted myself, mentally and physically, and that’s exactly how I want to leave this game.
The all-time leader in postseason wins with 19, Pettitte spent all but three of his 18 seasons with the Yankees. Pettitte left the Yankees via Free Agency after the 2003 season and signed a 3-year deal with the Astros, joining his former Yankees teammate Roger Clemens in an Astros starting rotation that also included Roy Oswalt.
Pettitte’s 2004 season ended early due to an elbow injury that required surgery but Clemens went 18-4 with a 2.98 ERA and took home his sixth career Cy Young Award. The pair of former Yankees would help the Astros reach their first World Series the following season. After the 2006 campaign both pitchers returned to The Bronx.
Much like Clemens, Pettitte is no stranger to retirement. The lefty called it quits after the 2010 season but returned to the Yankees after sitting out all of 2011. This season Pettitte has compiled a 10-10 record in 28 starts. If he stays on turn and makes two more starts, Pettitte’s final regular season start will be in Houston against the Astros next weekend. The Yankees are currently 3 & 1/2 games out of the second wildcard spot and barring a huge winning streak that could be Pettitte’s final appearance on a big league mound.
Pettitte’s career accomplishments are impressive. But are they impressive enough to land him a spot in the Hall of Fame? His inclusion in “The Mitchell Report” and his ties to performance enhancing drugs will certainly make his election to Cooperstown far from a slam dunk. Pettitte will, however, be remembered as a winner and a guy with perhaps the best pickoff move of all-time.