LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — This will be it for Chipper Jones.
The Braves’ future Hall of Fame third baseball announced today that the 2012 season will be his last. The Jones played all 18 years with the Braves, who made him the No. 1 pick of the 1990 draft, where he won a World Series and a National League MVP award.
Jones, 40, ranks as the Atlanta Braves franchise leader in nearly every offensive category with a .304 career batting average, 454 home runs, 526 doubles and 1,561 RBIs in 2,387 games. His home-run total ranks 33rd in major league history.
Jones’ 18 years of service with the same team leads all active major league players, bettering Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera (17 years with the Yankees).
The Braves and Jones, a seven-time All-Star, are discussing a yet-to-be-determined role with team following the season.
Jones finished second in the National League Rookie of the Year voting in 1995, the season the Braves won the World Series. He was the league’s Most Valuable Player Award in 1999 when he hit .319 with a career-best 45 home runs and 110 RBIs.
He won his first career batting title in 2008 with a .364 average (league-best .470 on-base percentage). It marked the second-highest single-season average ever for a switch hitter. Mickey Mantle hit .365 for the Yankees in 1957.
Jones is the only switch hitter in Major League history to post a .300 career average with more than 300 homers, and his career batting average ranks second all-time among switch hitters. He also ranks third behind Mantle’s 536 and Eddie Murray’s 504 career home runs by a switch-hitter.
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