November 13, 2019

FORMER NATS: Brian Schneider Retires

A second former Washington National announced retirement in two days. Yesterday, Nick Johnson and today, catcher Brian Schneider, 36.

Both Johnson and Schneider were part of the 2005 Nats who brought baseball back to DC and will always be sentimental fan favorites. As Barry Svrluga of the Washington Post said about the 2005 team, “Part of me thinks those guys, just by happenstance, shouldn’t have to buy drinks here for perpetuity, and it has nothing to do with their abilities as ballplayers.”

Schneider was drafted by the Montreal Expos in the fifth round of the 1995 amateur draft and made his MLB debut on May 26, 2000 at age 23. Schneider was with the Expos/Nationals through 2007 so never dressed in a Nats uniform at Nationals Park. Schneider went on to play for the New York Mets and the last three seasons with Philadelphia Phillies so Nats fans had the opportunity to see Schneider often.

We wish Brian Schneider the best.

Former Nationals Catcher Brian Schneider at RFK, 5/18/2007 (© Cheryl Nichols)

Former Nationals Catcher Brian Schneider at RFK, 5/18/2007 (© Cheryl Nichols)

Former Nationals Catcher Brian Schneider at spring training with New York Mets, 3/24/2008 (© Cheryl Nichols)

Former Nationals Catcher Brian Schneider at spring training with New York Mets, 3/24/2008 (© Cheryl Nichols)

FORMER NATS: Nick Johnson Retires

Former Washington Nationals first baseman Nick Johnson filed his MLB retirement papers today at only age 34 according to several sources.

Nick Johnson was drafted by the New York Yankees in the third round of the 1996 amateur draft and made his major league debut on August 21, 2001 at only age 22. Johnson was traded by the Yankees to Montreal Expos with Randy Choate and Juan Rivera for Javier Vazquez.

Johnson joined the Nationals when the Expos moved to Washington in 2005 and #24 quickly became a fan favorite. In fact, there were still several Johnson jerseys worn at Nationals Park in 2012. Johnson was traded by the Nats to the then Florida Marlins after the all-star break in 2009 for Aaron Thompson.

Unfortunately, after the terrible collision in right field with outfielder Austin Kearns at Shea Stadium on Sept. 26, 2006 that left Johnson with a broken femur, Johnson could never quite get healthy again. After a half season with Marlins, Johnson bounced around from the Yankees to Indians and played last year with the Baltimore Orioles.

He only played 233 games in the big leagues after the 2006 injury, however, the guy could get on base. Since 2001, Nick Johnson has 10th best OBP (.399) among players with 3,000 plate appearances.

Some of the media poked fun of Johnson’s injury history and Sabremetricians hero.

 

 

Thanks for the memories, Nick Johnson.
We wish you all the best.

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 5/4/2008 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 5/4/2008 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 6/4/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 6/4/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 5/21/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson at Nats Park, 5/21/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson sliding back for first base, 4/17/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson sliding back for first base, 4/17/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson sporting a beard, 4/17/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Former National 1B Nick Johnson sporting a beard, 4/17/2009 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Cameron retires, muddying Nationals center field picture

Mike Cameron, 17-year Major League veteran, announced his retirement today before ever stepping on a field as a member of the Washington Nationals. The 39-year old signed a one-year, minor league contract with the Nats earlier this off-season, but decided to hang up his spikes before Spring Training even started. Cameron was a solid big leaguer for a long time with a great blend of power, speed and natural defensive instincts in center field.

The announcement comes as surprise to the Nats, who expected Cameron to at least compete in spring training to be the right-handed hitting bench bat and defensive replacement, and potentially even platooning with Rick Ankiel in center field. Now, the picture is less than clear. [Read more…]

Former Nats: Alex Cora announces retirement from winter ball (Updated)

Updated: Apparently, Cora has only retired from winter ball and still wants to play in the United States. The following is the message from the Criollos de Caguas Facebook Page:

DE PARTE DE NUESTRO CAPITAN ALEX CORA: “El mensaje que puse aqui anoche se malinterpretó un poco… Mi retiro es solo DEL BÉISBOL DE PUERTO RICO… sigo buscando oportunidades para volver a jugar en Estados Unidos… Gracias a todos por el apoyo a mi carrera”

(Translated by Bing):
PART of our captain ALEX CORA: “the message that I put here last night were misinterpreted a bit…” My retirement is only baseball from PUERTO RICO… keep looking for opportunities to return to play in United States… “Thank you all for the support of my career”

__________________________________________________________________

Former Nationals utility infielder Alex Cora played winter ball and was the Captain of the Caguas Criollos of Puerto Rico. After the Criollos final game of the season tonight, he announced his retirement from baseball winter ball.

Alex Cora, 36, was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the third round of the 1996 draft. Cora has played all over the infield for seven MLB teams: Dodgers, Blue Jays, Indians, Red Sox, Mets, Rangers and Nationals Maybe he’ll follow in his big brother Joey’s footsteps and coach.

Best of luck to Alex Cora!

From the Criollos de Caguas Facebook Page:
MENSAJE DE NUESTRO CAPITAN ALEX CORA ANUNCIANDO SU RETIRO: Gracias a todos ustedes por el apoyo que me dieron por 16 temporadas. Gozamos y sufrimos, ganamos y perdimos pero de corazón les digo que ser Criollo es lo mejor que hay. Hoy cierro un capítulo de mi carrera y del fondo de mi corazón les digo que lo hago con la frente en alto porque soy y siempre seré Criollo de pura cepa! Gracias a todos.

(Translated by Bing):
MESSAGE from our captain ALEX CORA announcing his retirement: thank you all for the support they gave me for 16 seasons. We enjoy and we suffer, we won and we lost but heart I can tell you that being Creole is the best there is. Now close a chapter in my career and in the bottom of my heart I say that I do with the high front because I am and always will be pure strain Creole! Thank you all.

(h/t to John S.)

Alex Cora at a Nationals Fan Event, March 2011 (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

Alex Cora playing at Nationals Park, May 2011 (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

Cheryl Nichols is a Columnist and Photographer for District Sports Page. She is credentialed to cover the Washington Capitals and has reported on the community service and fan events for Nats News Network and Caps News Network since 2006. Cheryl is an accomplished action photographer and has been published in The Washington Post and many other local media. She was a credentialed photographer for the 2010 season covering the Washington Nationals. You can follow her on Twitter @cnichols14.

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