Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Darren Oliver is reportedly leaning towards retirement despite recording a 2.06 ERA last season and the team exercising a $3 million option on the 42-year-old for next year, according to a tweet from Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Oliver has seen somewhat of a resurgence since 2006, turning out an ERA of less than 3.00 over the past five seasons. This past season, he also recorded a 1.02 walks plus hits per inning pitched and a 52/15 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 56 and two-thirds innings. He has gone to the playoffs for each of the past six years as a member of the New York Mets, Los Angeles Angels and most recently with the Texas Rangers. If he does in fact decide to retire, he will end his career with a win-loss record of 115–94.
According to a report from John Lott of The National Post, Oliver had said at the end of September that he wants to spend more time with his wife and two sons in Texas:
“Every kid needs a father at home. That’s important to me. I think it should be important to a lot of people. Baseball’s second. Family’s first. I’ve always said that.”
The Blue Jays have seen a flurry of personnel leave for Boston this off-season, starting with John Farrell, who became the new manager of the Red Sox following Bobby Valentines departure. Brian Butterfield also left Tornot this offseason to become Boston's third base coach, as did Torey Lovullo, now the bench coach for the Sox.