On Nov. 28, future hall of famer and Detroit Tigers legend Miguel Cabrera announced to The Detroit News that the 2023 MLB season will be his final season putting on a uniform.
Many should have seen this coming at some point, considering how open Cabrera was about his decline in health. The man is 39 years old, and in recent years has had issues with his back, biceps and hamstrings.
In August, he said in an interview with reporter Evan Petzold of The Detroit Free Press that “I don’t feel well right now.”
Cabrera will hang up his cleats with a number of accolades. This past April, he recorded his 3,000th hit against the Colorado Rockies, making him the seventh player in MLB history to have reached that milestone, along with 500 home runs.
Tack on two American League MVP titles, seven Silver Slugger awards, four batting titles, twelve all-star selections, a Triple Crown award and a World Series ring, he’s bound for the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Once Cabrera joined the Tigers in 2008, he almost immediately became a Detroit icon. Cabrera always found a way to interact with the fans, and that’s what made him such a likable character on and off the field. He was just a big kid who loved baseball.
After 2008, the Tigers played above .500 for six consecutive seasons. A few years later, they fell out of playoff contention. Afterwards, Cabrera began to suffer from injuries that would prevent him from being the player he once was. In fact, he hasn’t played an entire season since 2016.
Though his personal accomplishments make him one of the greatest players of all time, it’s deeply saddening to realize that he wasn’t able to win a World Series in Detroit. The Tigers had one of the best pitching rotations during his peak seasons, with four of their five starters being Cy Young Award winners including Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Rick Porcello, and Doug Fister. Despite this, they still couldn’t get the job done.
It’s a tragedy Miggy never won a World Series in Detroit.
But everyone, especially Tigers fans, knows how talented Cabrera was. It will be a long time until we see another legend like him.
The only good news about his retirement is that there will be more fans in Comerica Park this upcoming season, gathering to see Miguel Cabrera round the bases one last time.