Utility infielder Maicer Izturis, who signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays in the offseason, announced his retirement Friday. Izturis received an invite to big-league camp, but decided it was time to walk away after injuries limited him to 11 games since the start of the 2014 season. He retires as a .269/.331/.372 career hitter over 909 games with the Expos, Angels and Jays.
"I'm 35 years old, I've been playing for so long and my mind and my soul wanted to do it, but my body doesn't allow it," he told reporters Friday at Blue Jays camp.
But, with all due respect to Izuris, who carved out a solid 11-year big-league career, that wasn't the most important news that came out of today's announcement. With Izturis gone, that leaves the one and only Bartolo Colon as the last remaining former Montreal Expos player in the major leagues.
Big Bart had a brief stint with the Expos, making 17 starts during the 2002 season following a blockbuster trade with Cleveland that saw (gulp!) Cliff Lee, Grady Sizemore and Brandon Phillips flipped to the Indians for Colon. The Expos, who traded Colon to the White Sox after the season, went on to play only two more years in Montreal before relocating to Washington.
Colon, who will turn 43 years old in May, is back with the Mets for a third straight season after signing a one-year, $7.25 million deal.
Even during his short time in Montreal, Colon was delivering signature moments, like his awkward bunting form attests to. Never change, and never leave us, Bart.