Reactions to New York Yankees Great Jorge Posada's Retirement

Yahoo Contributor Network

Seventeen-year veteran Jorge Posada formally announced his retirement at Yankee Stadium Tuesday, prompting many congratulatory reactions from within the New York Yankees family and members of the Major League Baseball world.

Posada, seated by his wife, Laura, daughter and son, had an appropriate sendoff, at times getting emotional while addressing a room jam-packed with reporters, photographers, several of his teammates, Yankees brass and a group of season ticket holders seated in the back rows.

Posada, who's been on four World Series-winning teams, is last in the line of great Yankees catchers, his predecessors being Thurman Munson, Elston Howard, Yogi Berra and Bill Dickey.

Here are 12 reactions to the lifelong Yankee's retirement:

"I want to congratulate 'Jorgito' on an outstanding career. He was one of the greatest catchers of his era, and one of the best Puerto Rican players to ever play the game. He was a great teammate, is a great friend and human being, and will always be a great Yankee. I was honored to take the field with him every day for so many years, and I cherish all the memories we have together, topped off by those World Series championships. Frankly, I can't believe that 'Jorgito' is actually announcing his retirement before I do. Seriously, I wish him, Laura, and the kids happiness and success in their future. He will be missed by the Yankees family, all of his teammates, coaches, and most of all, the great Yankee fans." - Bernie Williams (Yankees teammate from 1995-2006)

"Jorge was obviously one of the heart and soul pieces of all those championships with us. Everyone brings their own style to the table but Jorge played with so much fire and intensity, and you have to have all the different mixes of personalities on a team to be able to win the way we did. The intensity that he brought on a daily basis to the field was just amazing to watch. He was a wonderful teammate - one of the greatest teammates I've ever played with - and a great friend and a great person. "The fans loved Jorge because of the passion he played with. He didn't try to hide it, and he didn't make up excuses. He's a stand-up guy, and if he wasn't able to get it done, he would say 'I didn't get it done.' He handled all the victories and all the success with class and never made excuses for anything. Fans love that. They love to see you be real and passionate. When you're like that in New York, you're going to be loved, that's for sure." - Andy Pettitte (Yankees teammate from 1995-2003, '07-10)

"Jorge was one of the cornerstones of all those championship teams, handling the pitching staff all those years. The way he prepared every single day assured that he became the best player he could possibly be. He's going to go down as one of the greatest all-time Yankees. It's very rare that somebody comes up through the minor league system with the Yankees and plays 17 years with the club. He did it the right way as a true professional, a great teammate and a great baseball player." - Tino Martinez (Yankees teammate from 1996-2001, '05)

"Jorge is a good kid and he had a wonderful career. He has always been one of the toughest and most passionate guys on the club - the Yankees don't win those championships without him." - Yogi Berra (Hall of Famer, former Yankees player [1946-63] and manager [1964, 1984-85], and current Special Advisor)

"Jorge has bled the pinstripes for a long, long time, and he played with a passion that certainly rubbed off on his teammates. To play the number of games that he did, at the level he did, year in and year out, at the toughest position on the field, is a credit to his commitment to his craft. He left everything out on the field, and that's what made him special. - Alex Rodriguez (Yankees teammate from 2004-2011)

"I remember when we switched Jorge in the minors from second base to catcher. I always got reports of his improvement. Jorge was a worker - someone who was always in shape and who you didn't have to worry about. Even from the beginning, I loved how selective he was at the plate, his power, his strong arm and the fact that he was a switch-hitter. In my tenure as general manager [from Aug. 1990 through Oct. 1995], I never talked about him in a trade. In the big leagues, he provided big time offensive production, and you never had to platoon him. He was tough, durable and the little things just didn't bother him. He was a lot like Thurman [Munson] in that way." - Gene Michael (former Yankees player, coach, Manager, General Manager and current Yankees Senior Vice President)

"Jorge Posada has been a winner during the season, the postseason and in the clubhouse. He is a loyal and devoted Yankee and is a champion in the game of life. I will always treasure the time I spent with him." - Joe Torre (Yankees Manager from 1996-2007)

"Jorge was exceptional behind the plate. He gave you so much in terms of his target, working the umpires, and with the level of communication that he had. To me, the pitcher has to be comfortable and in-sync with the catcher. He fought with me, worked with me, and knew the counts. If I didn't see something that he did, I would shake off his sign, and he would just put down the same sign again. Whenever that happened, I realized that he knew something I didn't. It speaks to the trust I had in him. He always wanted the pitcher to feel as comfortable as he could. That's why in my mind, he was the greatest catcher." - David Wells (Yankees teammate 1997-98, 2002-03; with Posada as catcher, tossed perfect game May 17, 1998 vs. Minnesota)

"I'd like to congratulate Jorge on a fantastic career. As two catchers playing in New York at the same time, I was able to get to know him over the years and appreciate everything he brought to the table. He was a general behind the plate and delivered in the clutch when it mattered most. I wish him well on his retirement." - Mike Piazza (Major League Baseball player from 1992-2007; New York Mets catcher from 1998-2005)

"After hundreds of head-to-head games during the regular season and the postseason, I can't say I respect and admire anyone at our position more than I do Jorge. The hard work and preparation he put into catching is a huge reason he has five championships on his resume. He is a true grinder." - Jason Varitek (Boston Red Sox catcher from 1997-2011)

"Jorge has carried on the tradition of great Yankees catchers most notably Bill Dickey, Yogi Berra, Elston Howard and Thurman Munson. Jorge has lived up to the tradition of great Yankees catchers." - Arlene Howard (widow of Yankees catcher [1955-67] and coach [1969-79] Elston Howard)

"Jorge was one of my most favorite teammates of all time. He was into winning. He was mentally tough, physically tough, and he was never scared. It means a lot that he is retiring as a Yankee. As the seasons go on, I think people will realize how important he was to the team, and how big a role he played in the Yankees' success over the years. He was a great teammate and a fun guy off the field. I had a lot of fun with Jorge. I have all the respect in the world for him. He is going to be considered for the Hall of Fame, and any time people talk about you that way, it tells you what type of player you are." - Paul O'Neill (Yankees teammate from 1995-2001, current YES Network broadcaster)

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