On Thursday, Troy Tulowitzki announced his retirement from baseball. Tulowitzki, 34, signed with the Yankees after being released by the Blue Jays. With the Yankees, Tulowitzki played in five games to start the season at shortstop, but he then went on the 10-day injured list with a left calf strain. The Yankees transferred Tulowitzki to the 60-day disabled list on June 7.
A five-time All-Star, Tulowitzki spent parts of 10 years with the Rockies and parts of three with the Blue Jays before injuries derailed his career. Tulowitzki missed all of 2018 after having surgery to remove bone spurs from both his heels. He also suffered an ankle injury in 2017, playing only 66 games that season with Toronto. He played more than 130 games just three times over his 13 seasons.
Here's part of Tulowitzki's retirement statement:
"For as long as I can remember, my dream was to compete at the highest level as a Major League Baseball Player … to wear a big league uniform and play hard for my teammates and the fans. I will forever be grateful for every day that I've had to live out my dream. It has been an absolute honor.
"I will always look back with tremendous gratitude for having the privilege of playing as long as I did. There is no way to truly express my gratitude to the fans of Colorado, Toronto and New York. They always made my family and I feel so welcome.
"I want to thank the Yankees organization and Brian Cashman for giving me the opportunity to wear the Yankees uniform and live out another childhood dream. I wish that my health had allowed for a different ending to that chapter.
"While this chapter is now over, I look forward to continuing my involvement in the game that I love … instructing and helping young players to achieve their goals and dreams.
"I'm saying goodbye to Major League Baseball, but I will never say goodbye 2 the game I love. Thanks again 2 all of you!"
Colorado drafted Tulowitzki as the 7th overall pick of the 2005 MLB Draft out of Long Beach State. Although Tulowitzki grew up on the west coast, he often cited longtime Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter as his favorite player growing up. His jersey number with the Rockies and Blue Jays was No. 2 because of Jeter.
It's not hyperbole to say that if Tulowitzki had not been forced to fight against injuries, he could have garnered a career worthy of consideration for the Hall of Fame.
Thru age 29, minimum 4,000 PAs, best OPS-plus for SS: 1. A-Rod 146. 2. Banks 140. 3. Nomar 134. 4. Hanley 132 130. 5. Tulo 125. Just 330 games in thirties, 96 OPS-plus. Career actually a lot like Nomar. Excellence early, then beset by injury.— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) July 25, 2019
His time in Colorado certainly won't ever be forgotten by Rockies fans. Tulowitzki's emergence as one of the best shortstops in the game was a big reason for the team's surprise NL pennant in 2007. Tulowitzki secured the final out in game four, with his signature jump throw to first base.
In the 2007 World Series, the Rockies were swept by the Red Sox. It was Tulowitzki's only World Series appearance during his career as well as the only World Series appearance in Rockies franchise history.
Tulowitzki was also a two-time Gold Glove winner, two-time Silver Slugger and finished in the top 10 of NL MVP voting in each season between 2009-2011. He was also a second-place finisher in NL Rookie Of The Year voting in 2007. From 2006-2015, he hit .297/.369/.508, with 193 home runs.
Tulowitzki will stay busy with baseball. Nearly immediately after he announced his retirement, the University of Texas announced that he has been hired as an assistant coach.