This touches me, and pretty much anyone who read the outstanding book by Michael Lewis, Moneyball, deeply. Jeremy Brown was “the Badger” — the prototypical Moneyball player, one of the focuses of the book. He wasn’t pretty, didn’t look good with his shirt off, and he wasn’t heavily scouted coming out of college. But Billy Beane’s scouting system saw something — they saw a catcher who mixed an outstanding on-base percentage with some good power. They took Brown in the first round of the draft at a discounted rate when most people thought he was an extremely late round pick, if that. Beane reminded his scouts that they weren’t “selling blue jeans,” and looks didn’t matter. Well, after a career that’s lasted six years in the minors, and one 10-game stint in the majors, it appears as if Brown is calling it quits:
Brown … called Oakland assistant general manager David Forst on Tuesday and said that, for personal reasons the A’s chose not to disclose, he would not arrive in spring training camp.
The A’s announced Brown’s decision as a retirement, but general manager Billy Beane said it could be viewed more as a sabbatical, based on the fact that the A’s told Brown he would be welcomed back if he decided to change his mind.
I really don’t know what his reason for not reporting is, but I do know that at 28, he could have felt old for a minor leaguer. Maybe he thought his future wasn’t as a professional ballplayer. Sad news. The bright side is that Brown was 3-for-10 in the majors, and could retire as a .300 hitter for his career if he is hanging it up.