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Pinch hitter Mark Sweeney retires

March 6, 2009 at 8:33 PM

LOS ANGELES, March 6 (UPI) -- Pinch hitter specialist Mark Sweeney announced his retirement Friday following 14 seasons in major league baseball.

Sweeney, 35, leaves the game second in all-time in pinch hits with 175, trailing only Lenny Harris' 212, a .254 career batting average with 42 home runs and 250 RBI in 1,218 games with seven teams, and 102 pinch hit RBI.

Last season, he batted .286 for the LA Dodgers with two home runs and 12 RBI, and joins the Dodgers' staff in 2009 as an assistant coach.

"We are excited to be able to keep Mark Sweeney in the Dodger organization and we congratulate him on his retirement," said Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti. "With 14 years of big league experience, he will bring some very valuable baseball knowledge to our staff."

"I look forward to the opportunity to continue that association and to give something back to the game I enjoy so much," Sweeney said.

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