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Former Ranger Chris Davis has retired

Chris Davis, former Texas Ranger and current Baltimore Oriole, has announced his retirement

Texas Rangers v Oakland Athletics

Chris Davis, Baltimore Orioles first baseman and former Texas Rangers first baseman, has retired, it was announced today. Davis, 35, has not played this season due to injuries.

Davis, a Longview native, was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 5th round of the 2006 draft out of Navarro College in Corsicana. After a slow start as a professional he tore up the minor leagues in the second half of 2007, then beat up AA and AAA pitching in the first half of 2008. That earned him a call up to the majors, and he slashed .285/.331/.549 in 80 games for the Rangers after his promotion in 2008.

Davis looked like a potential long-term fixture in the Rangers lineup at that point, but he struggled in 2009, slashing .238/.284/.442. Things got worse in 2010, as he slashed .192/.279/.292 in just 45 games for the Rangers. Both years he was sent back to AAA for extended periods, where he performed well.

Davis struggled again in 2011 in the majors, slashing .250/.296/.408 in the big leagues, but putting up a .368/.405/.824 slash line in AAA. He ended up going to the Baltimore Orioles, along with Tommy Hunter, in a trade deadline deal for Koji Uehara in 2011.

Davis initially blossomed in Baltimore, slashing .278/.350/.571 from 2012-13, and he led the majors in homers, RBIs and total bases in 2013, when he was named to the All Star team and finished 3rd in the MVP balloting. After a bad 2014 season that saw him put up a 704 OPS, he returned to form in 2015, leading the majors in homers while slashing .262/.361/.562.

Davis hit the free agent market after 2015, and eventually signed a 7 year, $161 million deal to return to the Orioles. The contract was viewed with some skepticism by some due to Davis’s proclivity for strikeouts and history of up and down performance. After a good, if not great, 2016 season, Davis struggled in 2017, and then cratered — from 2018-20 he slashed .169/.251/.299 in 929 plate appearances.

Davis started the 2021 season on the injured list with a back strain, and then underwent season ending hip surgery. According to Jon Heyman, although Davis announced he is retiring, he will still be paid the remainder of what he is due on his contract.

Best of luck to a guy who I always rooted for in his retirement.