Angels News: Kurt Suzuki Will Play This Season Before Expected Retirement
MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Toronto Blue Jays
Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

This past offseason, veteran catcher Kurt Suzuki faced a choice between returning to the Los Angeles Angels for his 16th MLB season or retiring. He ultimately chose to return with the expectation that it would be his last in the Major Leagues.

Suzuki has played 48 games for the Angels as one of many back-up catchers behind Max Stassi. His stats reflect that of a 38-year old catcher in his final season, but he has remained extremely valuable to the team. Nearly every Angels catcher this season has referenced Suzuki when discussing their development.

The 16-year veteran has not played in a game since Aug. 28. He was placed on the bereavement list for a short time, and has been working to get back into game shape since returning, meaning he’s missed straight 18 games.

But with the season — and Suzuki’s career — winding down, Nevin assured that Suzuki would get some starts behind the plate as a farewell to the former 2nd-round draft pick and one-time All-Star, according to J.P. Hoornstra of The O.C. Register:

“He’ll play,” Nevin said of Suzuki. “He’s meant a lot to this organization. He’s meant a lot to baseball. He’s going to get a game or two, get a nice send-off for him. You’ve got to give him time to get in shape.”

The Angels have 16 games remaining on their schedule, including Monday’s final meeting with the Seattle Mariners. Suzuki should get a couple more chances to play Major League Baseball, something he’s done for 16 years, since he was just 23 years of age.

And given the way that Suzuki has impacted the Angels clubhouse, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him hang around the team beyond his retirement. It’s clear that Suzuki and the Angels organization have built a great relationship in two years, and it’s part of why he chose to come back for the 2022 campaign.

Angels ranked ninth-most valuable franchise

The Angels, a team that could be sold in the very near future, were ranked the ninth-most valuable franchise in MLB at approximately $2.2 billion. Sandwiched between the Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves, Arte Moreno can feel comfortable as he seeks a buyer for the team.

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