Braves catcher Brian McCann announced Wednesday night that he has played his last game.
In the Braves clubhouse after the team’s 13-1 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals in the deciding Game 5 of the National League Division Series, McCann said he made the decision more than a month ago and cherished playing his final season in a Braves uniform.
“This is everything that I wanted to do,” McCann said. “I wanted to come back and get a chance at the postseason and this is it for me. I’m going to go home and be a dad and play with those kids.”
McCann, 35, hit .249 during the regular season with 12 home runs and 45 RBIs. In the NLDS, McCann hit .188 (3-for-16) with a double and a run scored. He played in all five games.
McCann began his career with the Braves in 2005, the final season of the team’s 14 consecutive division titles. He hit a memorable home run off Roger Clemens on the Astros in the NLDS that season.
“I grew up watching the Atlanta Braves, we all did, and I was fortunate enough to watch his career,” outfielder Ronald Acuna said through an interpreter. “What else is there to say about him? Veteran, superstar, the tremendous seasons he had. Just a perfect career. He has a tremendous impact for your organization.”
McCann, a Georgia native, said he made the decision to retire roughly six weeks ago. “It’s time to go. Fifteen years of catching, it’s sad, but it’s time,” he added.
McCann came out in the ninth inning of Game 5 and shared a moment with manager Brian Snitker, who knew the backstop growing up in the organization and was aware of his looming retirement.
“I’ve known Snit for a long, long time,” McCann said. “He was my Double-A manager. To get a chance to do this with him, this is something I’ll always remember.”
McCann left the Braves as a free agent after the 2013 season and went on to play for the Yankees and Astros, the latter of whom he won a championship with in 2017.
He returned to the Braves on Nov. 26 last year. McCann, who’s always resided in metro Atlanta, said he’ll continue being around the organization in his post-playing life.
“I went out the way I wanted to, and I’m happy about that,” he said. “I’ll always be a part of this organization. I’ll be around. ... I’ll be watching those guys do their thing. I’ll be coming back a lot. I have a 7- and 6-year-old who love baseball. So I’ll be at the yard.”
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