Closer Joe Nathan will hang up his cleats after 16 very successful seasons in MLB. He will retire a member of the Minnesota Twins.
After playing a game your entire life, sometimes you just know when it’s time to call it quits. That is exactly what Joe Nathan is doing. The 42-year-old right hander will announce his retirement during a ceremony at Target Field on Friday.
Nathan, a 16-year veteran of MLB, will retire a member of the Twins. He spent seven years in Minnesota, and during his time there, he compiled 260 saves which is good for the Twins’ franchise record.
Before he was closing out games in Minnesota, Nathan spent four years in a Giants’ uniform where they tried him out as a starter. He did not begin closing regularly until he was a member of the Twins.
After Minnesota, Nathan spent time with the Rangers, Tigers and Cubs. Most recently, he signed a minor-league contract with the Nationals at the beginning of this season. He failed to make the big league roster out of Spring Training. He was released on May 31 after appearing in 17 games and posting a 6.19 ERA in the minors.
Nathan will finish his career with 377 saves, which is eighth most all-time. He was a six-time all-star, finished top five in Cy Young voting twice along with top 20 in MVP voting twice.
The sixth-round draft pick out of Stony Brook saved over 30 games nine times in his big league career. This included four seasons over 40 saves. He posted a sub two ERA five times. In 923.1 innings in his career, Nathan struck out 976 batters while walking only 344.
Nathan will be remembered as a dominant closer and one of the best during his time. It is not definite, but he will make a strong case to one day end up in Cooperstown. And if he does, there will be no one complaining.