Five-time Cy Young Award winner Randy Johnson announced his retirement today. The 46-year old pitcher won his 300th game with the Giants last season and finished with 303 for his career. He is second all-time to Nolan Ryan in career strikeouts.
Johnson pitched for the Expos, Mariners, Astros, Diamondbacks, Yankees and Giants in 22 seasons. Looking back on his time with the Expos, it was abbreviated compared to the 22 overall seasons, but he went 3-4 in 11 starts with a 4.69 ERA and 51 strikeouts. He was signed on June 9, 1985 and made his Montreal debut in 1988.
Many have wondered over the years how things might have turned out had he pitched his entire career with the Expos. Would they still be in Montreal? Granted, he was not showing early in his career what he did later on when he started winning Cy Youngs. I know, what if the Colts stayed in Baltimore....or the Wizards remained the Bullets (not funny right now)....
But that all changed on May 25, 1989. Johnson was traded with Gene Harris and Brian Holman to the Seattle Mariners for a player to be named later and Mark Langston. The PTBNL was Mike Campbell. Yep, I know.
What is your favorite Big Unit moment? When he accidentally killed a passing bird with a pitch? When John Kruk saw his life flash before his eyes during the All-Star game as an errant Johnson fastball sailed over his head? There are so many great memories of this dominating pitcher.
Right now, I am gazing out my hotel window in Olean, NY getting reading for GW at St. Bonaventure basketball and there is snow everywhere. It has been snowing since the moment we touched down at Buffalo airport. Makes me dream of those hot summer days and nights in Nats Park. I will remember this weather when baseball season gets into high gear, can’t wait! Or, would anyone like to play some snow baseball?