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While Phil Hughes' final 16 appearances came out of the Padres bullpen, the No 23 overall pick of the 2004 draft spent most of his 12-year career split between the Yankees and Twins.
Phil Hughes officially announced his retirement from baseball on Sunday via Twitter. Hughes last pitched in the majors in 2018 as a member of the San Diego Padres. While his final 16 appearances came out of the Padres bullpen, the No. 23 overall pick of the 2004 draft spent most of his 12-year career split between the Yankees and Twins.
In his own words, Hughes begins his announcement by saying, “While it’s been fairly apparent to most over these last couple years, I’d like to officially announce my retirement from baseball. Through many ups and downs over 12 years, I look back and am incredibly proud of what I was able to accomplish.”
Hughes took some time finding his way, and ultimately probably leaves the game as an underrated hurler. After debuting with the Yankees during the 2007 season, he became linked in many minds to Joba Chamberlain as a pair of promising arms that didn’t pan out quite as intended for the Yankees. Nevertheless, Hughes has plenty to be proud of after carving out a successful big-league career.
For starters, even though his Yankee career maybe didn’t go quite as some prospect pundits might have predicted, he was a significant contributor as a setup man during the Bombers' 2009 title run. Hughes posted a 3.03 ERA/3.22 FIP over 86 innings that season, including nine appearances in the postseason.
Hughes would settle in as a starter during a four-year run from 2012 to 2015. His best year came in 2014, his first season with the Twins in which he threw 209 2/3 innings with a 3.52 ERA/2.65 FIP and an ML-leading 11.63 K/BB rate and a seventh-place Cy Young finish.
In total, Hughes was worth 11.2 bWAR, but 17.7 fWAR, indicating his ultimate work level might have been underappreciated at the time. He spent seven seasons with the Yankees and five with the Twins, with one All-Star appearance in 2010. Congrats to Hughes on a long and successful career.
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