Delgado should be considered a very significant player in Major League Baseball history, according to staff writer Shane Lambert.
Carlos Delgado has announced his retirement from baseball as the former Toronto Blue Jay, who has not played in the Majors in almost two years, admitted that his comeback efforts were in vain.
Delgado stopped playing at the Major League level in May of 2009 and then proceeded to have two hip surgeries in the next nine months.
While he wanted to make a comeback he acknowledged earlier this week that it was not going to become a reality: "There comes a moment when you have to have the dignity and the sense to recognize that something is not functioning," Delgado said.
Nearing his 39th birthday, Delgado retires as a player who should be considered very significant as he managed to put up Hall of Fame-like numbers during the steroids era without there ever being a serious whisper or rumor of his own usage.
Unlike so many other players who enjoyed long careers that spanned the 1990s and 2000s, Delgado's career totals and averages can be taken at face value and they are definitely Cooperstown worthy.
Delgado, according to baseball-reference.com, had a career adjusted OPS of 138 - a statistic that reflects how he produced at the plate against Major League averages with ballpark conditions factored in.
That puts him tied for 83rd on the all-time leaders list
for the important offensive category and he is higher on that list than several current Hall of Famers, including Home Run Baker, George Brett, Al Kaline, and Tony Gwynn.
Delgado is one of the lost sluggers of the steroid era in Major League Baseball and his 2003 season is a case in point. Nobody really remembers the runner-up after a while and unfortunately Delgado finished second to Alex Rodriguez in the American League MVP race with 213 total votes.
However Rodriguez has admitted to using banned substances between 2001 and 2003 and with Delgado finishing second in the MVP race in '03 only to Rodriguez, a player who cheated, perhaps sports writers and even Major League Baseball should just retro-actively recognize Delgado as the best player that year.