Though he hopes to recover from a knee injury and pitch again, Atlanta Braves right-hander Brandon McCarthy plans to retire at the end of the 2018 season, he told MLB.com.
“I’m done after this,” McCarthy said in a story published Tuesday. “This is it. The offseason is the rest of my life. If I was going to keep playing, a month and a half ago, I would have had the surgery that cleans the and I’d be back next year just a little bit after spring.”
McCarthy, 35, hasn’t played since the end of June while battling tendinitis in his right knee, and he’s not eligible to return until September after being placed on the 60-day disabled list. But he’s working to recover enough to return and provide support in Atlanta’s bullpen.
McCarthy told MLB.com he’s been working on mechanical adjustments to help compensate for the knee issue, including a lower arm slot and a locked right leg.
“It felt awkward at first, but now it doesn’t feel awkward,” he said. “There’s no more load in the back. It’s like I ride down the mound as long as I can and then just throw it. It’s a lower arm slot, so it’s easier to get to. So it doesn’t feel like I threw before, but it’s not crazy different.”
He is expected to test out the new mechanics in rehab outings at Triple-A Gwinnett over the next few weeks.
In his 14th season, McCarthy is 6-3 with a 4.92 ERA in 15 appearances (all starts) this year, his first with the Braves. He has played for six other teams, most prominently the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Dodgers, going 69-75 with a 4.20 ERA in 255 appearances (197 starts).
He made three relief appearances in 2017 and one in 2016, but almost all of his work out of the bullpen came in 2006 with the Chicago White Sox.
—Field Level Media