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Jeff Suppan announces his retirement

Jan 3, 2014, 7:30 AM EDT

Jeff Suppan Getty Images

Jeff Suppan, a veteran of seven teams but best known for his 2006 NLCS MVP award with the St. Louis Cardinals, announced his retirement yesterday.

A second round pick of the Boston Red Sox in the 1993 draft, Suppan pitched in the bigs for 17 seasons, amassing a record of 140-146 with a 4.70 ERA, 1,390 strikeouts and 871 walks in 2542.2 innings. All but 31 of his 448 career games came as a starter. After spending the early part of his career in Boston he made stops in Arizona, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, another brief stop in Boston, St. Louis, Milwaukee, back to St. Louis and finishing his career in 2012 with the Padres.

Suppan gave a statement yesterday:

“After 17 Major League seasons, I’ve squeezed everything out of my ability,” Suppan said. “I am both honored and blessed to have played the game with some of the greatest teammates and coaches. Baseball will always hold a special place in my heart and I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life.”

To his credit, he probably squeezed more out of his ability than most guys of similar ability do, as his 17 years in the majors attest.

  1. markofapro - Jan 3, 2014 at 7:52 AM

    Good luck, Jeff. Too bad you are not younger- the Twins are looking to give away more bad money.

    • Kevin S. - Jan 3, 2014 at 9:50 AM

      Good luck, Jeff. Too bad you are not older – the Phillies are looking to give away more bad money.

  2. stex52 - Jan 3, 2014 at 8:25 AM

    Best of luck, Jeff. Nothing wrong with being a moderately talented pitcher who gives his best and always seems to find a job in the middle of a pitching rotation. Most players don’t do half as well.

    Murray Chass will be pushing him for HOF status starting next month.

  3. sfm073 - Jan 3, 2014 at 8:57 AM

    He had a good long solid career where he a made a lot of money playing a game. Enjoy relaxing on the west coast.

  4. sportsdrenched - Jan 3, 2014 at 9:48 AM

    Another “Guy” who made a good living and had a few flashes of brilliance over a long career. For some reason I have easier time liking and rooting for guys like Jeff Suppan than the “stars” of the game.

    Happy Trails.

    • hustleandflomax - Jan 3, 2014 at 10:03 AM

      I couldn’t have said this better myself. He knew exactly what he was and never came off as a selfish player. By all accounts I’ve seen, he was well liked–and in the interviews I’ve seen him in during his career with the Cardinals, he came off as an intelligent and personable guy.

      When St. Louis got him after the Sox released him, he was ‘just a guy’…nothing special and nothing to get excited about. But by the end of the 2006 World Series, he earned my total respect as a guy who wasn’t afraid to take the ball in a big situation and gave some of the gutsiest performances I’ve seen on the mound in the MLB playoffs.

      He was one of Dave Duncan’s greatest reclamation projects who took the ‘pitch to contact’ philosophy and made the most of it. Congrats to “Soup” on a solid, respectable career. Thanks for the thrills you gave us in 2006 and good luck in the next phase of your life.

      • Kevin S. - Jan 3, 2014 at 10:28 AM

        Dave Duncan may indeed have done some work with Jeff Suppan to make him pitch better, but it wasn’t by getting him to “pitch to contact” – Suppan’s strikeout, walk, batted ball and plate discipline numbers in St. Louis are almost perfectly in sync with his career performances. Find another narrative

      • hustleandflomax - Jan 3, 2014 at 11:09 AM

        Fair enough. Would it please Your Highness if I instead said that Suppan’s style better fit Dave Duncan’s ‘pitch to contact’ philosophy at that particular point in time, you condescending a-hole?

      • paperlions - Jan 3, 2014 at 11:22 AM

        Yeah, in StL, he was okay as a back of the rotation guy at a time when their farm system was barren and that was all he was…which is fine. If anything, he got a little luckier in StL on balls in play and sequencing (he had a higher strand rate) than at other times in his career. He was a good guy that had a couple of good games at important times, but he was always a below average starter.

      • paperlions - Jan 3, 2014 at 11:28 AM

        Kevin’s point is that there is no basis for that narrative. He wasn’t demonstratively better than he was before he was in StL, he got a little luckier stranding runners (which could be due to defense, Matheny/Molina at catcher, and pitcher friendly home park)…but he was still only a back of the rotation below average pitcher.

      • hustleandflomax - Jan 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

        With exception of 1 year up to that point (2003), Suppan had the best years of his career here in St. Louis. 4.16, 3.57, 4.12 are markedly better than his career ERA of 4.70. It was the best 3 year stretch of his 17 year career. I don’t think I was THAT off base. Besides, Kevin could have been less of a dick about it “(“Find another narrative”, F you)…that’s all I’m going to say. I’m tired of keyboard warriors who have to not only be right all the time, but condescending and insulting at the same time.

  5. uwsptke - Jan 3, 2014 at 10:15 AM

    Easy to root for, unless you’re a fan of a team with a brand new owner who decided to make a splash in free agency after the 2006 season and gave him $42 mil over 4 years to be mostly terrible.

  6. txraiderfan - Jan 3, 2014 at 12:49 PM

    Plus, he loves gay people everywhere

  7. rocktownhot - Jan 3, 2014 at 1:21 PM

    He outduled Roger Clemons in Game 7 of the 2004 NLCS and also was the starting pitcher in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS in which the Cardinals also won.

  8. markofapro - Jan 3, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    Hustle- you are my new hero.

  9. eddiek77 - Jan 3, 2014 at 10:22 PM

    Shame. The Pirates were looking to bring him back for 2014. Why not? Last year only strengthened their idea that once in a while, being cheap can pay dividends.
    Aw, well, back to sub 500 mediocrity this year.
    Maybe we can coax Roy Halliday out of retirement in 2015.

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