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Ventura retires after 16 seasons
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10/11/2004 5:31 PM ET
Ventura retires after 16 seasons
37-year-old slugger finishes career with 294 home runs
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Slugger Robin Ventura racked up 1,885 base hits in his 16-year Major League career. (Ed Betz/AP)
LOS ANGELES -- Robin Ventura announced his retirement following Sunday night's 6-2 loss to St. Louis that ended the Dodgers' season.

"I realize it's time to go," said the 37-year-old Ventura, a six-time Gold Glove winner and two-time All-Star who served as a bench player and elder statesman. "That's it. It was fun. The way it ended, it's not supposed to be some movie. It is what it is. I had a great time this year. Growing up, you always hope to play for the team you followed."

Ventura began his Major League career with the Chicago White Sox in 1989, playing 10 seasons in the Windy City before spending the next five with the New York Mets (1999-2001) and New York Yankees (2002-2003). He was traded to the Dodgers by the Yankees on July 31, 2003, in exchange for outfielder Bubba Crosby and minor league pitcher Scott Proctor.

The left-handed hitter finished his career with 294 home runs, 1,182 RBIs and a .267 average in 2,079 games. His best season came in 1999 with the Mets when he belted 32 long balls, drove in 120 and hit .301.

In his final campaign as a Dodger, Ventura saw most of his action coming off the bench, hitting five home runs and driving in 28 with a .243 average in 152 at-bats.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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