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List of Major League Baseball retired numbers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Plaques of numbers retired by the New York Yankees in Monument Park at Yankee Stadium

Major League Baseball (MLB) and its participating clubs have retired various uniform numbers over the course of time, ensuring that those numbers are never worn again and thus will always be associated with particular players or managers of note. The use of numbers on uniforms to better identify one player from another, and hence to boost sales of scorecards, was tried briefly by the Cleveland Indians of 1916, but this failed. The first team to permanently adopt the practice was the New York Yankees of 1929. By 1932, all 16 major league clubs were issuing numbers, and by 1937, the leagues passed rules requiring it.

The Yankees' original approach was to simply assign the numbers 1 through 8 to the regular starting lineup in their normal batting order. Hence, Babe Ruth wore number 3 and Lou Gehrig number 4. The first major leaguer whose number was retired was Gehrig, in July 1939, following his retirement due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which became popularly known in the United States as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Since then, over 150 other people have had their numbers retired, some with more than one team. This includes managers and coaches, as MLB is the only one of the major North American professional leagues in which the coaching staff wear the same uniforms as players. Three numbers have been retired in honor of people not directly involved on the playing field – all three for team executives. Some of the game's early stars, such as Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson, retired before numbers came into usage. Teams often celebrate their retired numbers and other honored people by hanging banners with the numbers and names. Early stars, as well as honored non-players, will often have numberless banners hanging along with the retired numbers. Because fewer and fewer players stay with one team long enough to warrant their number being retired, some players believe that getting their number retired is a greater honor than going into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Ron Santo, upon his number 10 being retired by the Chicago Cubs on the last day of the 2003 regular season, enthusiastically told the Wrigley Field crowd as his #10 flag was hoisted, "This is my Hall of Fame!"[1] However, Santo would be inducted into the Hall of Fame in July 2012, nearly two years after his death, after being voted in by the Veterans Committee.

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Transcription

List of all-time retired numbers

Elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame
Ford C. Frick Award winner
No. Player or other figure Team Date
1 Billy Meyer Pirates 1954
1 Bud Selig[Notes 1] Brewers April 6, 2015
1 Pee Wee Reese Dodgers July 1, 1984
1 Bobby Doerr Red Sox May 21, 1988
1 Fred Hutchinson Reds October 19, 1964
1 Ozzie Smith Cardinals September 26, 1996
1 Richie Ashburn Phillies August 24, 1979
1 Billy Martin Yankees August 10, 1986
1 Lou Whitaker Tigers August 6, 2022
2 Red Schoendienst Cardinals May 11, 1996
2 Nellie Fox White Sox May 1, 1976
2 Tommy Lasorda Dodgers August 15, 1997
2 Charlie Gehringer Tigers June 12, 1983
2 Derek Jeter Yankees May 14, 2017
3 Babe Ruth Yankees June 13, 1948
3 Earl Averill Guardians June 8, 1975
3 Bill Terry Giants April 5, 1983
3 Harmon Killebrew Twins May 4, 1975
3 Dale Murphy Braves June 13, 1994
3 Harold Baines White Sox August 20, 1989
3 Alan Trammell Tigers August 26, 2018
4 Luke Appling White Sox June 7, 1975
4 Earl Weaver Orioles September 19, 1982
4 Duke Snider Dodgers July 6, 1980
4 Ralph Kiner Pirates September 19, 1987
4 Lou Gehrig Yankees July 4, 1939
4 Paul Molitor Brewers June 11, 1999
4 Mel Ott Giants July 17, 1948
4 Joe Cronin Red Sox 1984
5 Brooks Robinson Orioles April 14, 1978
5 Lou Boudreau Guardians July 9, 1970
5 George Brett Royals May 14, 1994
5 Johnny Bench Reds August 11, 1984
5 Hank Greenberg Tigers June 12, 1983
5 Joe DiMaggio Yankees April 18, 1952
5 Jeff Bagwell Astros August 26, 2007
6 Johnny Pesky Red Sox September 28, 2008
6 Steve Garvey Padres April 16, 1988
6 Stan Musial Cardinals September 29, 1963
6 Al Kaline Tigers August 17, 1980
6 Tony Oliva Twins July 14, 1991
6 Bobby Cox Braves August 12, 2011
6 Joe Torre Yankees August 23, 2014
7 Mickey Mantle Yankees June 8, 1969
7 Craig Biggio Astros August 17, 2008
7 Iván Rodríguez Rangers August 12, 2017
7  Joe Mauer Twins June 15, 2019
8 Willie Stargell Pirates September 6, 1982
8 Joe Morgan Reds June 6, 1998
8 Yogi Berra Yankees July 22, 1972
8 Bill Dickey Yankees July 22, 1972
8 Cal Ripken Jr. Orioles October 6, 2001
8 Carl Yastrzemski Red Sox August 6, 1989
9 Ted Williams Red Sox September 1960
9 Reggie Jackson Athletics May 22, 2004
9 Minnie Miñoso White Sox May 8, 1983
9 Enos Slaughter Cardinals September 6, 1996
9 Bill Mazeroski Pirates August 7, 1987
9 Roger Maris Yankees July 21, 1984
10 Sparky Anderson Reds May 28, 2005
10 Dick Howser Royals July 3, 1987
10 Phil Rizzuto Yankees August 4, 1985
10 Ron Santo Cubs September 28, 2003
10 Tony La Russa Cardinals May 11, 2012
10 Tom Kelly Twins September 8, 2012
10 Chipper Jones Braves June 28, 2013
10 Michael Young Rangers August 31, 2019
11 Carl Hubbell Giants 1944
11 Jim Fregosi Angels August 1, 1998
11 Luis Aparicio[Notes 2] White Sox August 14, 1984
11 Paul Waner Pirates July 21, 2007
11 Sparky Anderson Tigers June 26, 2011
11 Barry Larkin Reds August 25, 2012
11 Edgar Martínez Mariners August 12, 2017
11 Ryan Zimmerman Nationals June 18, 2022
12 Wade Boggs Rays April 7, 2000
13 Dave Concepción Reds August 25, 2007
14 Ernie Banks Cubs August 22, 1982
14 Kent Hrbek Twins August 13, 1995
14 Larry Doby Guardians July 3, 1994
14 Ken Boyer Cardinals May 20, 1984
14 Gil Hodges Mets June 9, 1973
14 Jim Bunning Phillies April 16, 2001
14 Jim Rice Red Sox July 28, 2009
14 Paul Konerko White Sox May 23, 2015
14 Pete Rose Reds June 26, 2016
14 Gil Hodges Dodgers June 4, 2022
15 Dick Allen Phillies September 3, 2020
15 Thurman Munson Yankees August 3, 1979
16 Ted Lyons White Sox July 25, 1987
16 Whitey Ford Yankees August 3, 1974
16 Hal Newhouser Tigers July 27, 1997
16 Dwight Gooden Mets April 14, 2024
17 Dizzy Dean Cardinals September 22, 1974
17  Todd Helton Rockies August 17, 2014
17 Keith Hernandez Mets July 9, 2022
18 Mel Harder Guardians July 28, 1990
18 Ted Kluszewski Reds July 18, 1998
18 Darryl Strawberry Mets June 1, 2024
19 Bob Feller Guardians December 28, 1956
19 Billy Pierce White Sox July 25, 1987
19 Jim Gilliam Dodgers October 10, 1978
19 Tony Gwynn Padres September 4, 2004
19 Robin Yount Brewers May 29, 1994
20 Luis Gonzalez Diamondbacks August 7, 2010
20 Monte Irvin Giants June 26, 2010
20 Lou Brock Cardinals September 9, 1979
20 Jorge Posada Yankees August 22, 2015
20 Frank Robinson Orioles March 10, 1972
20 Frank Robinson Reds May 22, 1998
20 Frank Robinson Guardians May 27, 2017
20 Pie Traynor Pirates April 18, 1972
20 Mike Schmidt Phillies May 26, 1990
20 Don Sutton Dodgers August 14, 1998
20 Frank White Royals May 2, 1995
21 Bob Lemon Guardians June 20, 1998
21 Warren Spahn Braves December 11, 1965
21 Roberto Clemente Pirates April 6, 1973
21 Paul O'Neill Yankees August 21, 2022
22 Jim Palmer Orioles September 1, 1985
22 Will Clark Giants July 30, 2022
23 Ryne Sandberg Cubs August 28, 2005
23 Don Mattingly Yankees August 31, 1997
23 Willie Horton Tigers July 15, 2000
23 Ted Simmons Cardinals July 31, 2021
24 Whitey Herzog Cardinals July 31, 2010
24 Tony Pérez Reds May 27, 2000
24 Willie Mays Giants May 12, 1972
24 Walter Alston Dodgers June 5, 1977
24 Ken Griffey Jr. Mariners August 6, 2016[Notes 3]
24 Jimmy Wynn Astros June 25, 2005
24 Rickey Henderson Athletics August 1, 2009
24 Willie Mays Mets August 27, 2022
25 José Cruz Astros October 3, 1992
25 Barry Bonds Giants August 11, 2018
25 Jim Thome Guardians August 18, 2018
25 Andruw Jones Braves September 9, 2023
26 Billy Williams Cubs August 13, 1987
26 Gene Autry[Notes 4] Angels August 3, 1982
26 Johnny Oates Rangers August 5, 2005
26 Wade Boggs Red Sox May 26, 2016
27 Carlton Fisk Red Sox September 4, 2000
27 Catfish Hunter Athletics June 9, 1991
27 Juan Marichal Giants July 10, 1983
28 Bert Blyleven Twins July 16, 2011
29 Rod Carew Angels August 6, 1991
29 Rod Carew Twins July 19, 1987
29 John Smoltz Braves June 8, 2012
29  Adrián Beltré Rangers June 8, 2019
30 Orlando Cepeda Giants July 11, 1999
30 Nolan Ryan Angels June 16, 1992
31 Dave Winfield Padres April 14, 2001
31 Greg Maddux Cubs May 3, 2009
31 Greg Maddux Braves July 17, 2009
31 Ferguson Jenkins Cubs May 3, 2009
31 Mike Piazza Mets July 30, 2016
32 Steve Carlton Phillies July 29, 1989
32 Sandy Koufax Dodgers June 4, 1972
32 Elston Howard Yankees July 21, 1984
32 Jim Umbricht Astros April 12, 1965
32 Roy Halladay Blue Jays March 29, 2018
33 Mike Scott Astros October 3, 1992
33 Eddie Murray Orioles June 7, 1998
33 Honus Wagner Pirates February 16, 1952
33 Larry Walker Rockies September 25, 2021
34 Rollie Fingers Brewers August 9, 1992
34 Rollie Fingers Athletics July 5, 1993
34 Nolan Ryan Rangers September 15, 1996
34 Nolan Ryan Astros September 29, 1996
34 Kirby Puckett Twins May 25, 1997
34 David Ortiz Red Sox June 23, 2017
34 Roy Halladay Phillies August 8, 2021
34 Dave Stewart Athletics September 11, 2022
34 Fernando Valenzuela Dodgers August 11, 2023
35 Randy Jones Padres May 9, 1997
35 Phil Niekro Braves August 6, 1984
35 Frank Thomas White Sox August 29, 2010
36 Gaylord Perry Giants July 23, 2005
36 Robin Roberts Phillies March 21, 1962
36 Jerry Koosman Mets August 28, 2021
36 Jim Kaat Twins July 16, 2022
37 Casey Stengel Yankees August 8, 1970
37 Casey Stengel Mets September 2, 1965
39 Roy Campanella Dodgers June 4, 1972
40 Don Wilson Astros April 13, 1975
40 Danny Murtaugh Pirates April 7, 1977
41 Eddie Mathews Braves July 26, 1969
41 Tom Seaver Mets June 24, 1988
42 Mariano Rivera[Notes 5] Yankees September 22, 2013
42 Jackie Robinson Dodgers June 4, 1972
42 Jackie Robinson All MLB April 15, 1997
42 Bruce Sutter[Notes 5] Cardinals September 17, 2006
43 Dennis Eckersley Athletics August 13, 2005
44 Hank Aaron Braves April 15, 1977
44 Hank Aaron Brewers October 3, 1976
44 Reggie Jackson Yankees August 14, 1993
44 Willie McCovey Giants September 21, 1980
45 Bob Gibson Cardinals September 1, 1975
45 Pedro Martínez Red Sox July 28, 2015
46 Andy Pettitte Yankees August 23, 2015
47 Tom Glavine Braves August 6, 2010
47 Jack Morris Tigers August 12, 2018
49 Larry Dierker Astros May 19, 2002
49 Ron Guidry Yankees August 23, 2003
50 Jimmie Reese Angels August 2, 1995
51 Randy Johnson Diamondbacks August 8, 2015
51 Trevor Hoffman Padres August 21, 2011
51 Bernie Williams Yankees May 24, 2015
53 Don Drysdale Dodgers July 1, 1984
56 Mark Buehrle White Sox June 24, 2017
66 Don Zimmer Rays April 6, 2015
72 Carlton Fisk White Sox September 14, 1997
85 August Busch, Jr.[Notes 6] Cardinals April 13, 1984
455 Cleveland fans[Notes 7] Guardians May 29, 2001
KSM Keli McGregor[Notes 8] Rockies September 28, 2010
NY Christy Mathewson[Notes 9] Giants August 17, 1986
NY John McGraw[Notes 10] Giants August 17, 1986
P Grover Cleveland Alexander[Notes 11] Phillies 2001
P Chuck Klein[Notes 12] Phillies 2001
SHEA William Shea[Notes 13] Mets April 8, 2008
SL Rogers Hornsby[Notes 14] Cardinals 1997
Jack Buck[Notes 15] Cardinals 2002
Jaime Jarrín[Notes 16] Dodgers September 21, 2018
Vin Scully[Notes 17] Dodgers May 3, 2017
Ralph Kiner[Notes 18] Mets March 31, 2014
Bob Murphy[Notes 19] Mets April 5, 2023
  1. ^ Team founder and former MLB Commissioner. Number selected symbolically.
  2. ^ Aparicio's number was temporarily unretired with his approval for fellow Venezuelan shortstop Omar Vizquel. Vizquel played the 2010 and 2011 seasons with the White Sox.
  3. ^ Date of formal ceremony; number retirement took effect at the start of the 2016 MLB season. The number was also retired for all Mariners minor league affiliates at that time.
  4. ^ Team founder. The number represents the "26th man"—At the time of the number's retirement, Major League Baseball rosters were limited to 25 players prior September 1, when rosters expanded to 40.
  5. ^ a b Number was already retired league-wide.
  6. ^ Served as president, chairman, or CEO of the Cardinals from the team's purchase by Anheuser-Busch in 1953 until his death in 1989. The number represents his age at the time the number was retired in 1984.
  7. ^ Number was selected symbolically. The number 455 was retired in honor of the fans after the Cleveland Indians sold out 455 consecutive games.
  8. ^ Rockies president Keli McGregor was honored by having his initials "KSM" displayed in a manner similar to a retired number after his death.
  9. ^ Christy Mathewson played in the era before uniform numbers were used. He was honored for his tenure with the then-New York Giants with the letters "NY" displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  10. ^ John McGraw played in the era before uniform numbers were used. He was honored for his tenure with the then-New York Giants with the letters "NY" displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  11. ^ Grover Cleveland Alexander only played in the era before uniform numbers were used. Alexander was honored with a Phillies letter "P" logo displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  12. ^ Chuck Klein first played in the era before uniform numbers were used. He later frequently changed his number. Instead of retiring a number, Klein was honored with a Phillies letter "P" logo displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  13. ^ William Shea was the attorney who was in large part responsible for the creation of the Mets in 1961. The team's second home, Shea Stadium, was named for him. He was honored with the name "SHEA" displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  14. ^ Rogers Hornsby played most of his career in the era before uniform numbers were used. He wore number 4 with the Cardinals late in his career. Hornsby was honored with the letters "SL" displayed in a manner similar to a retired number.
  15. ^ Broadcaster Jack Buck was honored by the Cardinals with a microphone displayed in a similar manner to a retired number.
  16. ^ Broadcaster Jaime Jarrín was honored by the Dodgers with a microphone displayed in a similar manner to a retired number.
  17. ^ Broadcaster Vin Scully was honored by the Dodgers with a microphone displayed in a similar manner to a retired number.
  18. ^ Ralph Kiner was honored by the Mets as a broadcaster with a microphone displayed in a similar manner to a retired number.
  19. ^ Broadcaster Bob Murphy was honored by the Mets with a microphone displayed in a similar manner to a retired number.


List of pending number retirements

No. Player or other figure Team Date
10 Jim Leyland Tigers August 3, 2024

Former retired numbers

It is very rare for a team to reissue a retired number, and usually requires a special circumstance, such as the person for whom the number was retired returning to the team in a player, coach or manager role. Harold Baines provides one example of this when he returned to the White Sox multiple times.[2] The White Sox also re-issued Luis Aparicio's number 11, with his permission, to fellow countryman Omar Vizquel in 2010–11.[3]

In cases of franchise relocation, the handling of existing retired numbers is at the discretion of team management. The team may decide to continue honoring the retired numbers (as did the San Francisco Giants), or it may choose to make a "fresh start" and reissue the numbers (as the Washington Nationals have done).

The Cincinnati Reds returned Willard Hershberger's number 5 to circulation two years after his death. Cincinnati later re-retired the number to honor Johnny Bench.

When the Florida Marlins moved to their current stadium, LoanDepot Park, and were rebranded as the Miami Marlins, the number 5, which had been retired for the team's late first president Carl Barger, was returned to circulation because player Logan Morrison requested permission to wear the number to honor his father.[4]

No. Name Team Retirement date
5 Carl Barger[Notes 1] Marlins April 5, 1993
5 Willard Hershberger[Notes 2] Reds 1940
8 Gary Carter[Notes 3] Expos July 31, 1993
10 Rusty Staub[Notes 3] Expos May 15, 1993
10 Andre Dawson[Notes 3] Expos July 6, 1997
12 Roberto Alomar[Notes 4] Blue Jays July 31, 2011
30 Tim Raines[Notes 3] Expos June 19, 2004
  1. ^ Placed into circulation in 2012 when the Marlins moved to their new park and decided to honor Barger instead with a plaque at the stadium. The first player to receive the number was Logan Morrison. Barger was the team's first president, but died in December 1992, four months before the team's first game. The Marlins chose to retire #5 because it was the number worn by Barger's favorite player, Joe DiMaggio.
  2. ^ The Reds retired Hershberger's #5 after his death in 1940, but returned it to circulation two years later. Cincinnati later re-retired the number 5 for Johnny Bench.
  3. ^ a b c d The Montreal Expos retired numbers in honor of four players (Carter #8, Dawson #10, Staub #10, Raines #30). When the franchise relocated to Washington, D.C., after the 2004 season, the newly christened Washington Nationals chose not to recognize any uniform number retired while in Montreal. On October 18, 2005, the NHL's Montreal Canadiens honored the departed team by raising an Expos commemorative banner listing the retired numbers to the rafters of Montreal's Bell Centre.
  4. ^ The Toronto Blue Jays retired Alomar’s #12 on July 31, 2011. However, on April 30, 2021 in light of an investigation of Alomar being in violation of MLB policy after being alleged to have engaged in sexual misconduct in 2014, the Blue Jays removed Alomar's banner and cut ties with him. The number was used again for the first time on July 31, 2023, coincidentally 12 years to the day after it was originally retired, when Jordan Hicks claimed the number after being traded to the team.[5][6]

Retired in honor of multiple players

The following numbers have been retired in honor of multiple players:

Retired by multiple teams

A handful of players who had notable careers for multiple teams have had their numbers retired by each team.[12]

  • Frank Robinson's #20 was retired by the Reds, Orioles and the then-Indians.
  • Rod Carew's #29 was retired by the Twins and Angels.
  • Hank Aaron's #44 was retired by the Braves and Brewers.
  • Reggie Jackson had his #9 retired by the Athletics, and his #44 retired by the Yankees.
  • Rollie Fingers' #34 was retired by the Athletics and Brewers.
  • Carlton Fisk had his #27 retired by the Red Sox, and his #72 retired by the White Sox.
  • Greg Maddux's #31 was retired by the Cubs and Braves.
  • Nolan Ryan had his #30 retired by the Angels, while his #34 is retired by the Astros and Rangers.
  • Wade Boggs's #12 was retired by the then-Devil Rays, and his #26 is retired by the Red Sox.
  • Roy Halladay's #32 was retired by the Blue Jays, and his #34 is retired by the Phillies.
  • Jackie Robinson’s #42 has been retired by every team in MLB, due to him breaking the color barrier in baseball.
  • Gil Hodges' #14 was retired by the Mets and Dodgers.
  • Willie Mays' #24 was retired by the Giants and Mets.

Excluding Jackie Robinson, only Frank Robinson and Nolan Ryan have had their number(s) retired by three teams. Managers Casey Stengel and Sparky Anderson have also had numbers retired by two teams. Stengel's #37 was retired by the Yankees and Mets. Anderson's #10 was retired by the Reds, and his #11 was retired by the Tigers.[13]

Alternative methods of recognition

A number of teams have formal or informal policies of only retiring numbers of players inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, although there is no league-wide uniformity and teams sometimes break their own guidelines.[14][15] As an alternative to retiring numbers, many teams have established other means of honoring former players, such as team-specific Halls of Fame (Angels, Astros, Athletics, Braves, Brewers, Cardinals, Indians, Mariners, Mets, Orioles, Padres, Rangers, Reds, Red Sox, and Twins) or Walls of Fame (Giants and Phillies), a Ring of Honor (Nationals) or Level of Excellence (Blue Jays). In addition, several teams have kept certain numbers out of circulation since a player left, but have not formally retired them.[16][17] The Rangers introduced a third means of honoring former players while preparing to open their current home of Globe Life Field in 2020. In December 2019, a few months before the park's opening, the team announced that all of its retired numbers would be incorporated into the park's posted dimensions.[18]

The Montreal Expos franchise retired jerseys in honor of four players, but returned the numbers to use upon moving to Washington, D.C., to begin play as the Washington Nationals in 2005, becoming the only MLB team with no retired numbers other than Jackie Robinson's No. 42. In 2010, the Nationals established a "Ring of Honor" which as of 2022 includes three of those Expos players (Gary Carter, Andre Dawson, and Tim Raines), along with the Expos' last and Nationals' first manager, Frank Robinson; Nationals players Iván "Pudge" Rodríguez, Jayson Werth, and Ryan Zimmerman; original Washington Senators (1901–1960) players Joe Cronin, Rick Ferrell, Goose Goslin, Bucky Harris, Walter Johnson, Heinie Manush, Sam Rice, Harmon Killebrew, and Early Wynn, as well as owner Clark Griffith; expansion Washington Senators (1961–1971) player Frank Howard; and Homestead Grays players Cool Papa Bell, Ray Brown, Josh Gibson, Buck Leonard, Cumberland Posey, and Jud Wilson.[19][20][21] The Nationals finally retired their first number, Ryan Zimmerman's No. 11, on June 18, 2022.

The Miami Marlins had previously retired #5 in honor of their first team president, the late Carl Barger, but returned it to use entering the 2012 season when they relocated to the venue now known as LoanDepot Park. As of 2023, they are the only franchise with no retired numbers (aside from Jackie Robinson's).

Numbers kept out of circulation

Some teams have not formally retired certain numbers, but nonetheless kept them out of circulation. For example, the Los Angeles Dodgers' current policy is only to retire the numbers of longtime club members if they are inducted into the Hall of Fame; the lone exception was longtime Dodger player and coach Jim Gilliam, whose #19 was retired when he died of a cerebral hemorrhage during the Dodgers' 1978 postseason run. Nevertheless, the Dodgers informally kept Fernando Valenzuela's #34 out of circulation since he last played for the team in 1990.[22] In 2023, the Dodgers announced that his number would be officially retired.

The San Francisco Giants have kept Tim Lincecum's #55 out of circulation since he departed after the 2015 season, though it is not formally retired.[17]

The Giants also keep the uniform numbers of manager Bruce Bochy (15) and catcher Buster Posey (28) out of circulation.[23]

The Miami Marlins have not issued José Fernández’s #16 since his death in September 2016.

The Milwaukee Brewers have not issued Jim Gantner’s #17 since his retirement.

The Seattle Mariners have kept the following numbers out of circulation since the departure of a popular member of the team who wore it: #19 (Jay Buhner), and #51 (initially for Randy Johnson, and later for Ichiro Suzuki).

On Opening Day of the 2012 season, the New York Mets unveiled a memorial "Kid 8" logo to honor the late Gary Carter. Although no Met has worn the number 8 since Carter's election to the Hall of Fame, it is not retired. The Mets have not issued #5 since the retirement of David Wright.

The Baltimore Orioles have not re-issued numbers 7, 44, and 46 since the passing of Cal Ripken Sr., Elrod Hendricks, and Mike Flanagan respectively. The team has placed a moratorium on the three numbers in their honors.[24]

The Boston Red Sox have not re-issued uniform numbers 21 (Roger Clemens), 33 (Jason Varitek) and 49 (Tim Wakefield) since those players left the Red Sox or ended their careers.[25] Varitek later reclaimed #33 upon joining the Red Sox coaching staff.

The St. Louis Cardinals did not reissue Albert Pujols's #5 from his first departure after the 2011 season until his return to the team in 2022. Since his retirement at the end of that season, the Cardinals have again kept the number out of circulation. Yadier Molina's #4 was also taken out of circulation upon his retirement in 2022, as was Adam Wainwright's #50 after his 2023 retirement.

After Darryl Kile's death in 2002, the teams he played for (Colorado Rockies, Houston Astros, and St. Louis Cardinals) took his #57 out of circulation.[16] The Cardinals first re-issued the number in 2021 Spring Training, to pitcher Zack Thompson.

The Colorado Rockies have not re-issued Carlos Gonzalez's #5 since he left the team after 2018.

The Tampa Bay Rays have not re-issued Evan Longoria's #3 since he left the team after 2017.

The Detroit Tigers have not re-issued Justin Verlander's #35 since his departure from the team in 2017. The Tigers also removed Miguel Cabrera's #24 out of circulation following his 2023 retirement.

The Los Angeles Angels had not re-issued Nick Adenhart's #34, after he was killed in a car accident on April 9, 2009, although Noah Syndergaard requested and received the number when he joined the team in 2022. He stated that he wanted to wear his old Mets’ number as a tribute to Adenhart. The Angels have not re-issued Tim Salmon's #15 since his retirement at the end of the 2006 season. They have not retired Tyler Skaggs #45 since he died on July 1, 2019, although it is not in use anymore. For the remainder of the 2019 season, they put the 45 on the mound instead of the sponsor.

Number retired by Major League Baseball

(Left): The number 42 worn by Robinson on a plaque at Monument Park; (right): Mariano Rivera was the last player to wear the 42 on his shirt

Normally the individual clubs are responsible for retiring numbers. On April 15, 1997, Major League Baseball took the unusual move of retiring a number for all teams. On the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the baseball color line, his number 42 was retired throughout the majors, at the order of Commissioner Bud Selig. This meant that no future player on any major league team could wear number 42, although players wearing #42 at the time were allowed to continue wearing it (Mariano Rivera was the last active player to be grandfathered in, retiring after the 2013 season).[26]

Starting in the 2007 season, the 60th anniversary of Robinson's Major League debut, players and coaches have all worn the number 42 as a tribute to Robinson on Jackie Robinson Day, April 15.

There is a lobby to have uniform #21 retired in all of baseball to honor Roberto Clemente.[27]

Similar honors

Players who pre-date uniform numbers

Four teams have honored players who played before the advent of uniform numbers by placing their names among those of players whose numbers have been retired:

Broadcasters

The Ralph Kiner memorial logo (black), found adjacent to the New York Mets' retired numbers at Citi Field, 2018

Owners and contributors

Umpires

See: Umpire (baseball) § Numbers retired by the National and American Leagues

See also

Notes

References

  1. ^ Jauss, Bill (September 29, 2003). "Santo: Flag 'my Hall of Fame'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 19, 2010.
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Further reading

  • Baseball Uniforms of the 20th Century, Marc Okkonen, 1991, Sterling Publishing.

External links

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