Piazza Retires After 16 Seasons
Slugging catcher a lock for the hall
By Doug Sweeney,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2008 2:58 AM CDT
Oakland Athletics' Mike Piazza walks back to the dugout and waves to the fans after being lifted for a pinch-runner during the ninth inning of their baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
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(Newser) – The most prolific hitting catcher of all-time is hanging up his spikes. After 16 years, Mike Piazza is calling it a career, one that saw him amass a .308 lifetime batting average and 427 homeruns; 396 of those dingers came as a catcher, which is the most all time, reports AP. "It has been an amazing journey,” said the 12-time All-Star.

“It's the end of a Hall of Fame career," Mets manager Willie Randolph said. Selected by the Dodgers in the 68th round of the 1988 amateur draft Piazza embarked on a major league journey in which he eventually played for Los Angeles, Florida, the New York Mets, San Diego and, finally, Oakland. “I gave it my all and left everything on the field," reflected Piazza.