MLB Pitcher Ty Buttrey Retires at 28, Says Baseball Became 'More of a Business and Less of a Game'
"The older I got, the more I realized this dream to play professional baseball wasn't what I actually wanted," Ty Buttrey wrote in a lengthy Instagram post announcing his retirement
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Ty Buttrey announced his retirement from baseball this weekend, explaining how he looked forward to "finally be a normal, hardworking" person.
In his post, the 28-year-old reliever said when he told the Angels about his decision to walk away from the sport, the team gave him time before making it official. Buttrey recently contacted the team to let them know his decision was final.
"I took the additional time to make sure my thoughts were clear," Buttrey wrote on Instagram. "I recontacted the Angels and told them I was leaving the game for my own personal reasons."
Buttrey went on to explain that he had stuck with baseball "for everyone else," driven by an urge to prove his doubters wrong.
"As time went on baseball became more of a business and less of a game," he said. "I couldn't help but notice my love and passion for this game started to diminish. I always thought baseball was a cool job. I also knew that same job paid extremely well. What young kid doesn't want a cool job that pays well?"
Buttrey said what initially drove him to play baseball — to earn money and beat expectations — ultimately were not lasting motivators for him. Instead, he wanted to "finally be known as Ty, not Ty, the baseball player."
"I couldn't be any more excited to finally become just Ty," he said. "I'm tired of pretending and lying to the best fan case in the world. Life is super simple, find your true passion, find people you love and don't give a damn what any person outside those lines thinks."
According to ESPN, Buttrey appeared in 115 appearances with the Angels from 2018 to 2020, posting an ERA of 4.30 with 122 strikeouts. He was originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the fourth round of the 2012 MLB Draft, Halos Heaven reported.
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Angels manager Joe Maddon offered his support to Buttrey following the announcement while also calling the athlete a "very thoughtful young man."
"I could hear his voice as I'm reading it. He's a very thoughtful young man, and I understood precisely what he's talking about," Maddon told reporters before a game against the Chicago White Sox on Friday, according to ESPN. "If the fun is diminished, don't do it. I totally agree with that. I think as youth, we've all gone through those moments about choosing things that follow your heart, as opposed to not. And so a lot of respect to what he said.
"I'm wishing nothing but the best," he added. "I'm looking forward to staying in touch with him and being of help in any way I can.''