Veteran pitcher Bartolo Colon wants to play one final Major League Baseball season before retirement.
Colon, 46, made declaration during an interview with ESPN. The 21-year veteran hasn’t played in the majors since his 2018 season with the Texas Rangers.
“I thought that last year maybe I would have the opportunity,” Colon said. “I know that if it didn’t happen last year, this year would be less likely. I’m getting older and the game is all about the young pitchers coming up. When you get older, teams no longer need your services.”
Colon made his MLB debut in 1997 with the Cleveland Indians. The two-time All-Star has also pitched for the Montreal Expos, Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Angels, Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, New York Mets, Atlanta Braves and Minnesota Twins. Colon posted a 5.78 ERA and 7-12 record in 28 appearances for the Rangers in 2018.
Colon said if it was up to him, he would retire with the Mets.
The Dominican Republic native won the American League Cy Young Award in 2005 after he went 21-8 with a 3.48 ERA in 33 starts for the Angels. Colon has a 247-188 career record with a 4.12 ERA in 565 appearances.
If Colon signs with a team, he would be MLB’s active leader in career victories, complete games and errors for a pitcher. His 13 career shutouts would rank second among active pitchers.
The 5-foot-11, 285-pound right handed pitcher is known for his jovial nature and playing style. He released a book titled with his nickname Big Sexy in April.
“I’ve played with 10 teams, but with the Mets, the way all those players treated me, how that entire franchise treated me, from the front office to the kitchen staff, it was amazing,” Colon said. “And Mets fans are the best. In the beginning, when they laughed at me every time my helmet fell off, at first I felt uncomfortable.
“But when I saw how much the fans enjoyed it, I asked for a bigger batting helmet so that it would fall more because it was so much fun for them.”