Former Pittsburgh Pirates infielder Neil Walker played his first seven MLB seasons with the Pirates. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo
April 20 (UPI) -- Veteran infielder Neil Walker announced his retirement Tuesday after 12 MLB seasons.
The 35-year-old Walker, who was born in Pittsburgh, played his first seven seasons for the Pirates. He later spent time with the New York Mets, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Yankees, Miami Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies over his final five seasons.
"Officially retired, thank you to everyone that helped me in my journey to live out my childhood dream of being a Major Leaguer," Walker wrote on Twitter. "I loved [and] cherished every day. From Pittsburgh, NY Mets [and] Yankees, Milwaukee, Miami, and Philly, nothing but love to those organizations, cities [and] fans!"
The Pirates selected Walker with the No. 11 overall pick in the 2004 draft. He went on to record 93 home runs and 418 RBIs over 836 career games in Pittsburgh.
Walker's best MLB season came with the Pirates in 2014, when he hit .271 and established career bests in home runs (23) and RBIs (76) to earn a Silver Slugger Award. His 23 homers broke Bill Mazeroski's franchise record for home runs in a season by a second baseman.
Walker also smashed 23 home runs in 2016 as a member of the Mets. He played for the Phillies during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, appearing in 18 games.
In 1,306 career games, Walker finished with a .267 batting average. He racked up 149 home runs and 609 RBIs.
San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. looks to the sky as he crosses the plate after hitting a leadoff solo home run in the first inning off Los Angeles Dodgers' starting pitcher Trevor Bauer at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Saturday. The Dodgers held on to win 5-4. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo