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Lorenzo Cain MLB

(Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Lorenzo Cain announces retirement after 13 MLB seasons

Lorenzo Cain MLB
(Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Lorenzo Cain announces retirement after 13 MLB seasons

Former Milwaukee Brewers and Kansas City Royals All-Star outfielder Lorenzo Cain announced Tuesday that he will be retiring after 13 MLB seasons, he told MLB reporter Andy McCullough of The Athletic.

Cain, 36, is a two-time All-Star and a one-time gold glover in the outfield, where he mainly patrolled center field. Cain began his career with the Brewers, who drafted him in the 17th round in the 2004 MLB Draft out of Madison County High School in Madison, Fla.

He was traded to the Royals alongside Alcides Escobar after the 2010 season in a package for Zack Greinke. Cain spent seven of his 13 seasons in Kansas City, helping deliver them a World Series Title in 2015.

As a member of Kansas City, he slashed .289/.342/.421 slash line (.763 OPS, 106 OPS+), crushing 56 home runs with 308 RBIs, stealing 120 bags while hitting 161 additional extra-base hits (140 doubles, 21 triples). According to McCullough, he is expected to “return to Kauffman Stadium” for a retirement ceremony as a Royal with a “tentative target for the event” in May.

“I left it in the hands of my boys,” Cain said, via McCullough. “I said, ‘Hey, do you guys want Daddy to continue to play ball? Or are you ready for Daddy to be done and go home?’ And they said, ‘Dad, we want you to go home.’ And I said, ‘OK, then.’ So I’ve been done. I just haven’t announced it, I guess.”

“He’s going to be a Royal Hall of Famer,” Kansas City general manager JJ Picollo said. “Just the times that he rose to the occasion speaks volumes about what type of competitor he was. I don’t think he had the prettiest swing. I don’t think he was the most talented guy. But when it was a big moment, he loved those moments. And that was pretty special.”

Full quotes here.

Cain eventually signed back with the Brewers ahead of the 2018 season on a five-year, $80 million deal, where the outfielder spent the final five seasons of his 13-year career. Cain’s only played 43 games in 2022, slashing .179/.231/.465 with one home run and nine RBIs in 156 plate appearances.

Cain capped off his career with a .283/.343/.407 slash line — a 102 OPS+ — with 1,120 hits, 225 doubles, 24 triples, 87 home runs, 454 RBIs and 190 stolen bases in 1,171 career games. He was one of the best defensive center fielders of his generation. He racked up the most outs above average (65), the second-most defensive runs saved (120) and the third-highest ultimate zone rating (64.6) among all center fielders who have logged at least 5,000 career innings at the position, per FanGraphs.

Congratulations on a good career, Lorenzo!


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