Results tagged ‘ Mike Cameron ’
Former Mariners center fielder Mike Cameron, in Seattle to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Mariners Home Opener tonight at Safeco Field, has officially retiring from baseball “as a Mariner”.
Cameron, 39, had signed a 2012 contract with the Washington Nationals, but six days prior to the club’s reporting date, he notified them that he was retiring from baseball.
Today, Mike said, “I was excited to be invited to throw out the first pitch by the Mariners. On my way here on Wednesday, I decided that I wanted to retire as a Mariner. My memories and my time here were a joy both on the field and with my family. I am pleased that I was able to work with the Mariners organization to make this happen.”
Cameron spent four of his 17 Major League seasons with the Mariners, averaging .256 with 22 home runs and 86 runs batted in from 2000-2003. In the process, he quickly became a fan favorite while earning two Gold Glove Awards (2001, 2003) for his defense in center field. Mike had the unenviable task of following Ken Griffey Jr. in center field for the Mariners.
Mariners President Chuck Armstrong said, “When Mike told us that he would like to retire as a Mariner, we were excited and proud and wanted to make it happen for Mike. He was an integral contributor to the Mariners success from 2000-2003, and is a wonderful representative of the Mariners and the game of baseball. We wish him and his family the best as he moves beyond his playing days.”
Mike Cameron, the popular former Mariners outfielder, has agreed to throw out the ceremonial first pitch on Opening Night, Friday, April 13.
Cameron played for the Mariners for four seasons (2000-2003), endearing himself to fans with his hustle and blazing smile, and his trademark un-tucked shirttail immediately after the final out of each game.
Cameron came over to the Mariners in the trade that sent Ken Griffey Jr. to the Cincinnati Reds. And how does one follow a legend? Cameron wrote the book.
Early in the 2000 season, fans were still trying to figure out who the new guy in center field was and how he could ever replace Griffey.
In the fourth game of the season, Friday, April 7, vs. the New York Yankees, Derek Jeter drove a pitch deep to center. Cameron started sprinting to the wall, made the leap, and came down with a perfect ice cream cone catch. At that moment, Seattle’s love affair with Cammie officially began, the crowd went crazy, and the pain of Griffey’s departure started to ease.
Cameron was a key member of the 2001 team that won an American League record 116 games. He started in the outfield at the All-Star Game at Safeco Field that season, and won his first of two American League Gold Gloves (the other in 2003). He and Mark McLemore were front and center in an iconic moment from that amazing season when they led teammates around the infield, carrying the American flag, after the team clinched the American League West Division title on September 19. Last year, the scene was immortalized as a bobblehead to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the 2001 season.
Cameron set a single game record for home runs with four longballs on May 2, 2002, against the Chicago White Sox. He hit the first off pitcher Jon Rauch and the next three off Jim Parque. In his final at-bat in the 9th inning, Cameron almost had #5 when he sent the right fielder to the wall to make the catch. The Mariners won that night 15-4, and Rauch and Parque were both optioned to the minors after the game.
Cameron’s 17-year Major League career ended on February 19, 2012. He played for seven teams other than the Mariners: the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, New York Mets, San Diego Padres, Milwaukee Brewers, Boston Red Sox and Florida Marlins. He’d been invited to Spring Training by the Washington Nationals at the time of his retirement.
The Seattle Mariners would like to salute Mike Cameron on a wonderful 17-year Major League career and thank him for helping make so many memories in his four years in a Mariners uniform. Cameron announced his retirement from baseball today.
From 2000 to 2003, there was a four-year stretch at Safeco Field where not many balls found the turf in center field. Cameron wowed the Mariners faithful with his numerous home run saving catches and his passion for the game. In addition to being a team leader, Cameron was a winner, helping lead Seattle to a 393-255 record (.606 winning percentage) during his tenure in Seattle.
As a Mariner he was an All-Star in 2001, won a pair of gold gloves and set the single-game home run record with four longballs May 2, 2002 at Chicago (AL). He hit .256 with 115 doubles, 19 triples, 87 home runs and 344 RBI in 610 games with the Mariners.
Here are a two of his many highlights during his illustrious playing career (click on photos for video highlights):
Thanks for the memories Cammy!