PHOENIX Ryan Braun says hes strongly leaning toward retirement, but the Milwaukee Brewers home-run leader isnt ready to make any decision regarding his future.
Braun visited the Brewers spring training site Monday and said he hasnt picked up a bat since the end of the 2020 season. The 2011 NL MVP became a free agent when the Brewers declined to exercise a $15 million mutual option in his contract last October.
Im strongly leaning in the direction of being done as an active player, the 37-year-old Braun said. But I think you can always push that decision back. Im still young enough, still working out, still in shape. If something were to change, I might as well leave that door open as long as possible.
Braun has spent his entire major league career with the Brewers and said that I cant foresee a scenario in which I play for any other major league team.
Last season, Braun batted a career-low .233 with seven homers and 27 RBIs in 39 games while dealing with a back issue. He came on strong late in the season and had a .958 OPS in September.
His back issues prevented him from playing in the Brewers first-round playoff loss to the eventual World Series-champion Los Angeles Dodgers.
Once the regular season starts and Im able to watch some games, I feel like thats when Ill actually miss the game itself, Braun said. Im kind of interested to see how I feel, what it feels like. Obviously Ive never experienced it before. Time will tell.
Braun made his debut with Milwaukee in 2007. His 352 homers as a Brewer are the most of anyone in franchise history.
He ranks second among all Brewers in career RBIs (1,154), extra-base hits (809), total bases (3,525) and doubles (408). He ranks third in runs (1,080), hits (1,963), triples (49), stolen bases (216) and walks (586).