Josh Donaldson, former MVP with Blue Jays, announces retirement

Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson (20) celebrates his solo home run during sixth inning American League baseball action in Toronto on Monday, April 2, 2018. (Nathan Denette/CP)

Third baseman Josh Donaldson, who won the American League MVP in 2015 as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays, has announced his retirement from baseball.

Donaldson, 38, made the announcement in an interview with Sean Casey on The Mayor’s Office on Youtube.

“It’s sad because I’ll be not able to go out there and play the game that I love anymore, but it’s also a very happy time that I get to be around the family and kind of take that next chapter in life,” said Donaldson, who noted that he got married during the off-season.

Donaldson retires after a 13-year career that included three All-Star selections and two Silver Slugger Awards.

He joined the Blue Jays in a trade with the Oakland A’s in 2015 and became an instant star on Canada’s only team. That year he led the AL in both runs scored (122) and RBIs (123) while posting a 7.1 WAR to help the Blue Jays snap a 22-year playoff drought.

The Blue Jays returned to the playoffs in 2016 — when Donaldson finished fourth in AL MVP voting after a 7.2 WAR season — and he authored one of his more memorable moments with the team when he slid home to clinch an ALDS sweep of Texas.

The Blue Jays traded Donaldson to Cleveland during the 2018 season and he made stops in Atlanta, Minnesota and with the New York Yankees before finishing his career in Milwaukee.

While he played less than four seasons in Toronto, Donaldson is among the franchise leaders in a number of categories including Offensive WAR (20.1, ninth), slugging percentage (.548, second) and Adjusted OPS+ (148, second).

“As things kind of kept transpiring, I just really felt it had to be a perfect situation for me to go back and play,” Donaldson said. “There were a couple of opportunities out there, but at the end of the day, things weren’t really clicking and meshing for myself to be ready and go into a season mentally and physically ready to play.”

–With files from the Associated Press

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