After 13 seasons at the major league level, pitcher Brandon McCarthy has decided the end of his career is quickly approaching.
McCarthy announced Tuesday he plans to retire after the 2018 season. The 35-year-old right-hander has a 6-3 record with a 4.92 ERA with the Braves but has not pitched since June 24.
“I’m done after this,” McCarthy said, per MLB.com’s Mark Bowman. “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 [knee] and I’d be back next year just a little bit after Spring [Training].”
McCarthy has a 69-75 career record with 908 strikeouts and a 4.20 ERA. He has played for seven teams over the course of his career and joined the Braves as part of a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers in December 2017.
Rather than have the surgery, McCarthy hopes to return to form and work out of the Braves bullpen down the stretch of the season. Before he can become a long-relief option for the team, McCarthy will pitch at Triple-A Gwinnett the next couple of weeks.
“If I go out there and just [look mediocre], then there is no reason to activate me because it just cost someone else a roster spot,” McCarthy said, according to Bowman. “If I’m not getting outs, what’s the point of doing that for a month? But if I feel like I can go out and be good and take up innings, then it absolutely makes sense.”
Due to the knee ailment, McCarthy has made changes to his pitching mechanics. Bowman reported that McCarthy was initially pessimistic about the changes but walked away more optimistic after throwing 40 pitches at SunTrust Park on Tuesday.