Ian Kinsler is walking away from the game he has loved his entire life. The star second baseman had several outstanding seasons during his time in the majors, with his best efforts coming as a member of the Texas Rangers and Detroit Tigers.
Father time catches up to Kinsler
Any MLB fan, especially one in the great states of Texas or Michigan, knows that when Ian Kinsler took the field, he gave everything he had.
Ian Kinsler: “I gave it everything I had.” https://t.co/0N5kqluclu
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 20, 2019
The 37-year old Kinsler told The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal that while he planned to play until he was 40, a herniated cervical disk that ended his 2019 season back in August played a big factor in his decision to retire.
“My pride wouldn’t let me go halfway at something that I’ve been doing at 100% for my whole baseball life,” the veteran second baseman said. “I gave it everything I had when I played.” Not many will argue with that statement.
Kinsler was a throwback. He played with grit. On defense, he was as solid as they come. And when he was at bat, he was one of the toughest guys to strike out.
A great example of that is Kinsler’s 2014 season in Detroit. He batted a league-high 684 times in 2014, yet he struck out just 79 times. That is incredible.
The four-time All-Star and two-time Gold Glove winner will finish his career with 257 home runs, 909 RBIs, and 243 stolen bases. He also finished with 1,999 hits — one hit shy of 2,000.
Kinsler was a key piece of one of the biggest trades in modern baseball history. Back in 2013, the Tigers traded slugger Prince Fielder to the Rangers for Kinsler.
While many fans in Motown didn’t like the deal at first, Kinsler won over fans quickly with his solid play.
Kinsler staying with Padres
What’s next for Ian Kinsler? It is being reported that Kinsler will stay on with the San Diego Padres as an adviser to baseball operations.
“Ian had a long and distinguished career and will go down as one of the best second basemen of his generation,” Padres general manager A.J. Preller said. “We’re excited to have him join our front office to share his passion for the game and experience as a World Series champion. His breadth of baseball knowledge will be extremely beneficial to our organization.”
One thing is for sure, the Padres held on to one of the best baseball minds in the game today. That should only benefit a team on the rise in 2020.