Blog Entry

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Posted on: January 24, 2012 1:21 pm
 


By Matt Snyder


After 14 seasons and truckloads of cash, J.D. Drew is likely going to retire, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has learned. Heyman notes Drew was only going to play if he found the "perfect" spot, and that evidently isn't going to happen.

Drew, 36, did have a very good offensive career. He hit .278/.384/.489, good for a 125 OPS-plus, with 242 homers, 944 runs scored and 273 doubles. He finished sixth in MVP voting in 2004 -- his lone season with the Braves -- and was an All-Star in 2008. His career 45.9 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) is really good as well. He also won a World Series ring with the 2007 Red Sox.

On the other hand, many seem to scoff when hearing Drew's name and immediately think "overrated." That's because, in some ways, Drew's career could be considered disappointing. He entered the league as the top prospect in baseball, one of the most heavily hyped in the past 20 years. His agent, Scott Boras, continually got him paid like a megastar as well, as Drew accumulated $108,091,688 (Baseball-Reference.com) in his 14-year career. That's an average of roughly $7.72 million per season, which is pretty tough to do in the MLB system.

In addition to the hefty salary, Drew's inability to stay completely healthy contributed to the stigma that he was overrated. He never appeared in more than 146 games in a season and averaged just 470 plate appearances per campaign from 1999-2011.

This all led to Drew being one of the most polarizing players in baseball. He could have been one of the greats, but instead he's largely viewed as an overpaid, injury-prone slugger with great rate stats.

I would expect Drew to be on the Hall of Fame ballot five years from now -- I mean, Bill Mueller, Brad Radke, Phil Nevin and Tony Womack were on the ballot this year -- but just that one time, as he'll surely get less than five percent of the vote.

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Comments

Since: Oct 19, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:22 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Wish Drew the best of luck.  He never could be completely healthy for a season and always seemed to have something go wrong so that always sucked.  He did play very good defense for the Red Sox and that will be missed.  He did play hard all the time and now I just wonder who will fill his role in RF this year and beyond



Since: Oct 13, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:59 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

As a lifetime Sox fan, I wish Drew could have conrtibuted more. However, the Grand Slam he hit to dead center field in the 2007 playoffs against the Indians when down 3 games to none paid for his entire contract. Without that hit, the Sox LOSE that series and never make the World Series and win in 2007.

That ONE hit paid for his $60M contract.  This kid could have been a monster, but had a decent career.  His lack of emotion and pension for getting hurt make his career average.

Maybe he'd accept the league minimum to stay in beantown as payback????  just kidding.



Since: Oct 13, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:58 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

As a lifetime Sox fan, I wish Drew could have conrtibuted more. However, the Grand Slam he hit to dead center field in the 2007 playoffs against the Indians when down 3 games to none paid for his entire contract. Without that hit, the Sox LOSE that series and never make the World Series and win in 2007.

That ONE hit paid for his $60M contract.  This kid could have been a monster, but had a decent career.  His lack of emotion and pension for getting hurt make his career average.

Maybe he'd accept the league minimum to stay in beantown as payback????  just kidding.



Since: Jul 29, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:47 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Who the hell cares? I hope Drew isn't going to break down and start weeping at his retirement ceremony in front of a couple of media members that had nothing better to do that day or just wanted some free food.



Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:41 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Bor-ass hung an anchor on Drews neck that held him down his entire career. Possibly the most over-hyped, overrated, and definitly overpaid player of his generation.
Hopefully he saved all that money he got. Would hate to see him doing everready commercials to make a few extra bucks.  If he does resort to that a little free advice, don't air the commercials in the Philly market.




Since: Jan 3, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:23 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Sorry hudsonhawk, but as a fellow Red Sox fan I have to disagree. Drew has been paid a lot of money and not once did he ever live up to his contract with the Sox. He was a major disappointment. Yes he was a very good fielder but as a hitter, he was less than desireable. As a right fielder in Boston, he was needed to have more of an impact that what he did. Only 2 seasons over 20 home runs and his largest RBI total was 68 (which he did twice). And yes he had a good eye, not great, at the plate. But for someone who supposedly had a "great" eye at the plate, he struck out way too much! 3 out of his 5 years in Boston he struck out over 100 times. And the 2 years he didnt, he struck out 80 times in 109 games and 58 times in 81 games. I can think of half a dozen Sox players in his tenure I would rather have up with bases loaded and 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth.

Youkalis
Pedroia
Ramirez
Ortiz
Lowell
Ellsbury
heck, even Beltre for the one year he was in Boston

And concerning that idiot Boras, Drew could have most definitely told how it would be since he was the boss and Boras worked for him.

Just my opinion 



Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:19 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

Very nicely written.  This is a microcosm of the uphill battle Boras can create for his players.  That being said, $100MM+ in the bank ain't bad either...

Now, it's up to his brother to underwhelm by himself in AZ.



Since: Jun 24, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:06 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball

As a Red Sox fan, who has watched Drew play a lot over the years, I have to say that he's gotten a bum rap from many people.  He was one of the smartest players around and ALWAYS had his head in the game.  I never ever saw him make a mental mistake.  He always got a good jump on the ball when playing the outfield and made it look easier than it was, like Dimaggio did.  He was one of the best baserunners I've ever seen, and I've watched baseball since the 1950's.  He always made the correct move on the bases and was excellent at taking the extra base.  He had a great eye at the plate and could be counted on to be a tough out in a critical situation.  You wanted him up there with the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth.  You knew he wasn't going to get himself out.  The pitcher was going to have to get him out. And he always ran everything out.

Boras' actions at the start of Drew's career got him off on the wrong foot with the fans and coupled with the recurring injuries made him an easy target.  And Drew was the anti-Paul O'Neill as far as showing emotion was concerned which seems like an important factor to some fans and mediots but is totally meaningless to anyone who actually understands the game.  Drew was a quiet, solid player who had a hard time keeping himself 100% healthy during the course of his career and who had a really good agent who got him every nickel he could get.  That's not ground for execution, or even derision.  He may well have been overrated at the start of his career but most people underrate him now at the end. 




The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com