Josh Beckett says he's retiring

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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Josh Beckett is retiring, he told

Beckett said he is calling it a career after the Dodgers were eliminated by the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 4 of the National League Division Series on Tuesday night.

Beckett, who was a World Series MVP at age 23 and threw a no-hitter May 25 at age 34, pinned the decision on his health. He needs surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left hip, with reporting the surgery will take place in May.

"I just don't see me going through that rehab and coming back to pitch at this point in my life," Beckett told

Beckett returned this past spring after undergoing a procedure to alleviate thoracic outlet syndrome near his right shoulder and surprised many by going 6-6 with a 2.88 ERA in 20 starts, including his no-hitter against the Phillies in Philadelphia. He also had three stints on the disabled list with the hip injury, finishing the season on the DL after he reached a plateau in his rehab and was told by doctors that he would need the surgery, which requires about four months of recovery.

Beckett, who would have been a free agent following this season, previously sounded as if he was leaning toward retirement but said he would make the final call over the winter after spending time with his wife and two young children.

Beckett said in early September, when the need for surgery was announced, that he had to do four hours of work before games to get his body in position to make his starts this season. He said he realized he wasn't going to be able to bounce back from the hip injury when he played light catch from 50 feet and was sore the next day.

"At some point, you decide, 'Is this really worth trying to get myself ready for another season when you know the stuff that goes into it,'" he said last month. "It's not the pitching part that bothers you. I probably felt best on the days I pitched. It's the other days leading up to it."

Beckett began hinting that he might retire after the season in a TV interview immediately after his no-hitter. He pitched 2,051 innings over 14 major league seasons with a 3.88 ERA and 138-106 record.

A three-time All-Star, he won the World Series in 2003 with the Miami Marlins and was the American League Cy Young runner-up in '07, when he went 20-7 and won the World Series with the Boston Red Sox. Boston traded him to the Dodgers along with Carl Crawford, Adrian Gonzalez and Nick Punto in August 2012.'s Mark Saxon and's Doug Padilla contributed to this report.