Slugger Vladimir Guerrero is hitting .303 with the Toronto Blue Jays affiliate after posting some terrific totals in High-A Dunedin. Guerrero is currently injured after being hit by a pitch, and there is some big news concerning the veteran’s comeback status.
Mike Wilner has tweeted that the “rumors are true” and that Vladimir Guerrero has given up on coming back and playing baseball. That means, no come back for the 37-year-old, future Hall of Famer with the Blue Jays.
The right-handed DH was once one of the best players in baseball with insane power and an arm in right field that could gun anyone down. Guerrero has not been worth over the league-average since 2008, but he was worth 1.7 WAR in 2010 in his lone season with the Texas Rangers after hitting 29 homers for a 119 wRC+.
Vladimir Guerrero has been worth exactly 60 WAR in his career with a healthy 136 wRC+. The former Montreal Expos and Los Angeles Angels star also owns a career .235 ISO and is one home run away from 450. If does decide to call it quits, he will retire one home run shy of 450 and his Hall of Fame case will be picked apart by many.
Last season, Guerrero was at the replacement level in his lone year with the Baltimore Orioles. He posted a wRC+ below 106 for the first time in his career with a 95 wRC+. He was, no surprise here, a liability on the bases (he once stole 40 bases; true story) and walked just 2.9% of the time. Vladdy G has always been a free swinger, but that total is far too low.
His batting average fell to under .300, and 2011 was the year when we saw the true final decline season in Guerrero’s career. He was still an effective hitter a year before with the Rangers after what was once thought as his rock-bottom year in his final season with the Angels (0.8 WAR).
Update: None of this matters. The Jays released Guerrero. He doesn’t plan to retire (a relief right there), but there might not be much of a market. It will be interesting to see which teams are in rumors to sign him and who eventually scoops him up.