Veteran knuckleballer R.A. Dickey is considering retiring at the end of the season, he tells David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It’ll just be a family decision,” he says. “We have made no official decision at all, but we certainly have had conversations around both coming back or retiring.”
The Braves have an $8MM option or a $500K buyout on Dickey for 2018, but it appears Dickey’s decision will be somewhat independent of the Braves’ decision about whether to pick up that option. (The Braves’ plans aren’t yet clear, although 69% of MLBTR readers feel the Braves should exercise the option after a season in which Dickey ate 190 innings and was generally productive.) GM John Coppolella previously alluded to the fact that Dickey could retire despite the option, and Dickey tells O’Brien he could consider playing elsewhere if the Braves do not retain him (although it would have to be the “perfect spot,” naming Cincinnati and St. Louis as other cities that are reasonably close to his offseason home in Tennessee).
Dickey declined the opportunity to pitch for the Braves in their season finale tomorrow, which means he’ll finish the season with 400 career appearances and 300 career starts — good round numbers to finish his career on, he points out. He has a 4.04 career ERA with 120 wins and the 2012 NL Cy Young award to his credit. He’ll turn 43 next month.