Had MLBTradeRumors been in existence during Tim Salmon's strongest years, it's unlikely that you would have seen him featured prominently on the site. For the most part, it was difficult to picture the outfielder known as Mr. Angel donning another uniform. On this date in 2006, Salmon announced that he would end his career with the only franchise that he had ever known.
Salmon quickly made a name for himself in the majors as he hit .283/.382/.536 with 31 homers in his first full season in 1993, earning AL Rookie of the Year honors with 100% of the first-place votes. The right fielder didn't let up in the years that followed and finished seventh in MVP voting in both 1995 and 1997, seasons in which he posted an OPS of 1.024 and .911, respectively. Injuries would limit Salmon to just 98 games in 1999 – his lowest total since becoming a full-time major leaguer – but he bounced back in spectacular fashion in 2000, matching his career-high of 34 home runs.
The strong season came at the tailend of his four-year, $16.5MM deal with the Halos. The lifelong Angel wasn't short on suitors, but quickly chose to stay put with the Angels on a four-year, $40MM extension. Salmon's 2001 regular season was somewhat forgettable and it stayed that way thanks to his strong bounceback in 2002, culminating in the Angels' 2002 World Series championship.
The veteran would later reach another crossroads in his career where he may have entertained the idea of playing elsewhere. After missing all of 2005 thanks to a pair of significant surgeries, Salmon hooked on with the Angels in Spring Training with the hope of auditioning himself for other clubs. However, the veteran's play earned him a spot with the club in 2006 in which he saw 54 games at DH with a handful of appearances in the outfield. On September 28th, Salmon announced that he would call it a career after 14 big league seasons.
On a day in which the Braves are paying tribute to their own longtime superstar, it seems fitting to also reflect on the career of another lifelong franchise pillar who plied his craft on the opposite coast. While Chipper Jones' body of work is obviously quite different from Salmon's, it's rather remarkable that the outfielder never received an All-Star nomination throughout the course of his lengthy career. However, he will always be remembered fondly by Angels fans for his power bat, his resilience in the face of multiple setbacks, and his instrumental role in the club's 2002 championship.