Are you younger than MLB's 10 oldest players?

March 15th, 2018

There is a point in almost any baseball fan's life when they realize, with a moment of sad resignation, that every Major League Baseball player is younger than they are. Major League Baseball players are roughly the same age, forever; it's the rest of us who keep getting older. And eventually, we're older than all of them. I've joked before that this is Baseball Fan Woodersonism, referring to Matthew McConaughey's character from "Dazed and Confused." My seven stages of Baseball Fan Woodersonism:
• Youth. All baseball players are older than you. They all seem eternal and massive, like redwoods.
• Peerism. Rookies are your age; you watch up-and-coming prospects while studying for midterms. The world spreads out before you, limitless.
• Peak years. This is when you are the same age as the superstars, mid-to-late 20s, when players are at their absolute best and you start worrying, "Hey, I should have a lot better idea of where my life is going than I do."
• Established veteran. This is when the players who were rookies when you were in college started getting called "grizzled."
• Retirement. It is incredibly disturbing when baseball players your age start retiring and you're still figuring out how to tackle that student loan.
• Manager. "Wait, how in the world is Gabe Kapler old enough to be a baseball manager?"
• Death. Fortunately, we are all immortal and will never die.
Personally, I always measured my own baseball age by former Phillies, Tigers and Cardinals player Placido Polanco, who was born on the same date as me, Oct. 10, 1975. But he retired a few years ago. So now, like middle-aged humans everywhere, I'm hanging on for dear life. There are only a few guys left.
The patron saint of this, of course, was Jamie Moyer, the crafty Phillies lefty who was pitching for the Rockies when he was 49. His final start was May 27, 2012, just less than six months away from his 50th birthday. For a long time, you could make yourself feel better, as a baseball fan, by saying, "I'm still younger than Jamie Moyer."

But baseball is, and always will be, a young man's game. Life, however, just keeps going. So here's a look at the oldest 10 players in baseball heading into the 2018 season. To qualify for this list, you must:
• Have played in 2017
• Be either on a Major League roster, be on a Minor League contract or receive a non-roster Spring Training invite
• Not have been cut yet
:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::
Some players, like R.A. Dickey, played last year but are not on a roster and apparently have not decided if they are retiring. Others, like , are playing overseas. And finally did retire. So they're not here. It is possible players in their late 30s like , , , , and will still sign with a team this spring. If so, they'll make this list. But for now, they're not here, either.
If you are younger than everyone on this list, congratulations. But time is coming for you yet.
10. , Miami Marlins
Birthdate: Oct. 10, 1979 (38)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($9 million '18 salary)
First season: 2008
Career fWAR: 6.4

Ziegler is slated to be the Marlins' closer, though might ultimately have something to say about that. As you'll note, there are many relievers among MLB's relative elderly; it's easier to stick around when you just have to show up for an inning here or there.
9. , San Diego Padres
Birthdate: May 25, 1979 (38)
Contract situation: Signed to Minor League deal
First season: 2004
Career fWAR: 12.9

Young is still insanely tall and still plugging away, back with the team he made the All-Star Game with back in 2007, trying to crack the Padres' rotation. Manager Andy Green says Young is "in the mix." He is also almost 20 years older than potential San Diego teammate Fernando Tatis Jr., whose father homered off Young a decade ago.
8. , Texas Rangers
Birthdate: April 7, 1979 (38)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($18 million '18 salary)
First season: 1998
Career fWAR: 84.3

This is my favorite kind of older ballplayer: The one who has already long clinched his spot in the Hall of Fame. Beltre is still, somehow, one of the best third basemen in baseball. He only played 94 games last year, but he hit .312 with 17 homers. Beltre will be a free agent next offseason, and he has shown few signs he won't be a smart investment. He may play forever.
7. , Detroit Tigers
Birthdate: Dec. 23, 1978 (39)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($18 million '18 salary)
First season: 2002
Career fWAR: 29.6

It was just 2014 that Martinez was one of the best hitters in baseball, but it's been coming apart since then. He hit only 10 homers in 107 games last year, and he has only played 15 games in the field over the past two years. The Tigers are obviously rebuilding, and all told, this looks like close to the end for V-Mart. He did reach the 2,000-hit milestone last season.

6. , Los Angeles Dodgers
Birthdate: Dec. 17, 1978 (39)
Contract situation: Signed through 2019 ($1 million salary in '18 and '19)
First season: 2003
Career fWAR: 64.5

You have to love that Utley got a two-year contract. The amount per season, $1 million, is so small that the Dodgers must have figured, "Why not?" Utley still has some utility, though it's worth noting he hasn't had an above-average offensive season since 2014 and hasn't made an All-Star Game since '10. But if teams kept paying you to keep playing, you'd stick around, too.
5. , Atlanta Braves
Birthdate: Dec. 2, 1978 (39)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 (potential $1.25 million '18 salary with incentives)
First season: 2006
Career fWAR: 2.2

Moylan is back with the Braves after spending the first seven years of his career there; it's actually his third stint with the team. (He pitched there in 2015 as well before spending the past two seasons with the Royals.) Moylan is obviously handy to still have around: He did lead baseball in games pitched in 2017, with 79. Moylan somehow threw only 59 1/3 innings in those 79 games, which is sort of remarkable.
4. , Washington Nationals
Birthdate: July 26, 1977 (40)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($1 million '18 salary)
First season: 2001
Career fWAR: 12.2

Did you know Benoit used to be a starter? His first five seasons in Texas, he was a starting pitcher, totaling 55 starts before landing in the bullpen for good in 2006. Benoit has appeared in 764 games over 16 seasons for eight teams; the Nationals, who signed him last month, are his ninth. He made one start back in 2001, giving up six earned runs in five innings of a 19-6 loss to Detroit, a game famous for the Tigers scoring 13 runs in the top of the ninth. Players who appeared in that game include Alex Rodriguez, Rafael Palmeiro, Ivan Rodriguez, Kapler, Ricky Ledee, Craig Monroe, Randall Simon, Damion Easley, C.J. Nitkowski and current MLBPA chief Tony Clark.
3. , Minnesota Twins
Birthdate: March 18, 1977 (40)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($4.5 million '18 salary)
First season: 2002
Career fWAR: 8.1

Rodney remains indestructible, the guy you can't believe is being counted on to be a closer yet still hangs onto the job all season. He somehow had the third-most saves of his career for the D-backs last year despite a 4.23 ERA. Rodney's last save was his 300th, which puts him 26th all time; he's four away from passing Doug Jones. If he puts together 39 saves again, he'll pass John Wetteland for 14th place.

This is where my cutoff is, by the way. There are only two active players in baseball older than me. I suspect you know who they are.
2. , Seattle Mariners
Birthdate: Oct. 22, 1973 (44)
Contract situation: Signed through 2018 ($750,000 '18 salary)
First season: 2001
Career fWAR: 58.2

What a relief it is to still be able to put Ichiro's name on this list; it was close there for a second, wasn't it? He's back with the Mariners, and it just feels right. One thing that doesn't feel right: Ichiro's calf, which tightened up and forced him to leave Wednesday's game early. Please come back soon, Ichiro.
1. , Texas Rangers
Birthdate: May 24, 1973 (44)
Contract situation: Signed to Minor League deal
First season: 1997
Career fWAR: 51.4

Of course. You should know that Colon has given up just one run in 8 2/3 innings of three starts this spring. In his last start, he retired the final seven batters he faced. Colon might just win a rotation spot with Texas. The world is sometimes more beautiful than words can possibly express.