Paul Konerko’s 18-year career officially ended yesterday, as he left the field for a defensive replacement before the sixth inning and received a lengthy ovation from the fans at U.S. Cellular Field (video link). Konerko retires with a career .279/.354/.486 slash line, 439 homers, a 2005 World Series ring and an ALCS MVP Award from that same championship season. ESPN’s Jayson Stark notes that Konerko’s career path is unique in baseball history, as he spent his first two seasons in brief stints with the Dodgers and Reds before spending his final 16 years with the White Sox. We at MLBTR congratulate Konerko on his excellent career and wish him all the best in retirement.
Here’s some more from around the AL Central…
- Rick Hahn thinks the White Sox can contend in 2015, the general manager told reporters (including CSN Chicago’s Dan Hayes). The central goal is to keep adding to the team’s core, Hahn said, though extra payroll space will make an expensive short-term contract possible if the team feels such a deal will help put them over the top. “I think we are pleased with a lot of the progress we’ve made in the last 15 months, but we’re by no means, first satisfied, nor operating under the belief that we’re by any means finished, in terms of assembling a core and a unit that can contend on annual basis,” Hahn said.
- Indians slugger Jason Giambi isn’t thinking about whether or not he’ll play in 2015, for now just focusing on spending time with his family in the offseason, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian writes. Giambi will turn 44 in January and has played an even 20 seasons in the majors. If he does hang up his cleats, it seems likely that a coaching job awaits Giambi, quite possibly with the Tribe; the slugger said in April 2013 that he’d already turned down several coaching offers in order to keep playing for as long as he could.
- The blockbuster trade that bought James Shields and Wade Davis to the Royals in exchange for a prospect package headlined by Wil Myers is “everything that we hoped it would be,” Royals GM Dayton Moore told MLB.com’s Dick Kaegel. “When you make deals, you hope and expect them to work for both organizations. I think it’s turned out that way. It strengthened our pitching to a point where we were able to play competitive baseball from the first day to the last.” Shields is a free agent this winter and is unlikely to be re-signed by Kansas City, though Davis (who just completed one of the great relief seasons in baseball history) is controllable via team options through 2017.
Enough’s enough Giambi. You’ve impressed us all with your longevity, but you’re too old.
his OPS+ was a 51 lol it was time for him to retire in 08 or 09 on top. He’s had a -.3 WAR (95 OPS+) since his last decent year in 09 which really wasnt all that great either
WAR is not particularly useful in determining the value of pinch hitters or part time DHs.
Trying to top Julio Franco?
PK, class act and classy move by WSox manager Ventura
I understand he’s supposedly an amazing clubhouse guy, but how could any major league team really justify using a roster spot on Giambi at this point?
I read that and thought you were talking about Konerko…until I saw Giambi…lol
As a lifelong Cub fan I naturally hate all Chisox- but certainly made an exception
for Konerko. Class class class.
Best wishes, Mr Konerko,
It’s time for Giambi to hang it up. He has only had a positive fWAR once in the past 6 years. I would love to see what he could do as a hitting coach though. It’s utterly unbelievable to think about what he could do with his bat, especially nowadays. Maybe he could teach the kids how to actually get on base.
Sign Martinez to 3 year deal (maybe with a 4th as option) max to DH and be the veteran leader this team needs, trade for left handed hitting outfielder, try to trade Danks and Viciedo (include one of the three second baseman coming up in a deal?) and the revamp the bullpen.
Danks is basically an innings-eater at this point, so why trade him just to go out and find another one?
Paul Konerko- borderline HOFER? Or just a superb player…
Glad someone was recognizing Konerko, ESPN has been too busy on the Jeter bandwagon apparently to really notice another guy who has been great for the league is retiring.
Konerko should be a first ballot HoFer even with Jeter a lock.
Eh Konerko just doesn’t elicit an automatic yes in terms of the HOF when I hear the name. I’d put him in the class of guys like Will Clark, really good, but not quite HOF material.
Konerko was better than Clark. Clark was a solid but he had no where near the power Konerko had. The only thing Clark was really better at was making contact and getting on base, PK trumps him in just about everything else.
Just retire as a player. Several teams were looking at him to manage them. Why play when you can’t really contribute to the team you’re own.