Mets postseason hero Murphy retires

January 29th, 2021

, who slugged the Mets into the World Series in 2015 and transformed into an MVP candidate with the Nationals, is retiring after 12 seasons in the Major Leagues.

Murphy told SNY's Andy Martino on Friday that he has decided to retire.

"This is a beautiful game, and I really just feel humbled and blessed that it let me jump on the ride for a little bit," Murphy told SNY. "It’s beautiful. It can teach you about so many things. And all I can say is, 'Thank you.'"

The 35-year-old Murphy was a free agent this offseason. He spent the last two seasons with the Rockies, after playing his first seven years in the big leagues for the Mets, the next 2 1/2 for the Nationals and half a season with the Cubs.

Murphy was a three-time All-Star -- once for the Mets, twice for the Nationals -- a two-time Silver Slugger at second base and the National League MVP runner-up in 2016 while with Washington. But he's most famous for his historic postseason run in 2015 with the Mets, when he crushed seven home runs, including homering in a record six straight games, to lead New York to the NL pennant.

Murphy homered off Clayton Kershaw twice, Zack Greinke, NL Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, Kyle Hendricks, Jon Lester and Fernando Rodney as the Mets defeated the Dodgers and Cubs on their way to their first World Series appearance since the 2000 Subway Series. Murphy was named the NLCS MVP.

"Murph was one of my all-time favorite teammates and a great friend," longtime Mets captain David Wright told SNY via text message after hearing of Murphy's retirement. "I could sit and listen to him talk about hitting for hours, which I often did while playing cards after games. He worked tirelessly to perfect his craft and was selfless on the diamond. His postseason heroics in 2015 were one of the most impressive things I have ever witnessed on a baseball field."

Murphy's breakout in the 2015 playoffs was a result of swing changes he'd made working with Mets hitting coach Kevin Long that transformed him from a line-drive contact hitter to a power hitter who embraced the "fly-ball revolution." Murphy took those changes with him to Washington when he signed with the Nationals as a free agent after that playoff run and had the best season of his career in 2016.

That year, Murphy batted .347 and led the NL with a .595 slugging percentage and a .985 OPS, hitting 25 home runs and a league-leading 47 doubles with 104 RBIs. The Nationals won the NL East and Murphy finished second to Kris Bryant in the MVP race.

Murphy finishes his career with a .296 batting average, 1,572 hits, 138 home runs and 735 RBIs.

"The numbers are cool," Murphy told SNY, "because it’s a really hard league and I never thought I would get one hit, let alone 1,500."