Just last September, Torii Hunter was talking about retiring following the 2012 season. An offseason of rest and rejuvenation seems to have quelled that urge, as Hunter recently told ESPN's Mark Saxon that he'll look to play for another two or three seasons after his contract expires this season:
"I'm just going to keep playing and get it out of my system, because I don't want to go home and be like, 'I've got like two or three years left,'" Hunter said. "I know I've got two or three good years in me. My body's good, my athletic ability is good. I can go out there and play."
Hunter, 36, struggled at times in 2011, but finished with a torrid two-month stretch in which he hit .324/.396/.537 with 10 long balls over the season's final 51 games. That tear propelled his home run total to 23 — the tenth time in 11 seasons that he's broken the 20-homer barrier. Only an injury-shortened 2005 (14 homers in 98 games) broke that streak.
Hunter is entering the final season of the five-year, $90MM contract he signed with the Halos following the 2007 season. The Angels and Twins are the only organizations he's ever known in his 19-year professional career. Minnesota selected Hunter with the 20th pick in the 1993 draft, and he's totaled a .274/.332/.467 line while winning nine Gold Gloves in his career.