He gave it his all for the only franchise he played with during his MLB tenure, and will always be remembered by fans.
He is the kind of player who earned respect from the whole baseball universe, not just Nationals fans, at a time in which loyalty is not easy to find.
The Nationals had a heartfelt tweet for him to say goodbye.
“Thank you to our 1st pick in team history. Thank you to a father, husband, brother and son. Thank you to the heart and soul of our franchise. Thank you, Mr. Walk-Off. Thank you, World Series Champion Ryan Zimmerman. Thank you, Mr. National,” the team tweeted, along with a three-minute video, just a few minutes after his retirement was announced.
Thank you to our 1st pick in team history.
Thank you to a father, husband, brother and son.
Thank you to the heart and soul of our franchise.
Thank you, Mr. Walk-Off.
Thank you, World Series Champion Ryan Zimmerman.
𝐓𝐡𝐚𝐧𝐤 𝐲𝐨𝐮, 𝐌𝐫. 𝐍𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐥. pic.twitter.com/Xn5cJMaX36
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) February 15, 2022
The First Player To Be Drafted By The Nationals
Zimmerman was actually the first player picked by the Nationals as a franchise.
Previously the Montreal Expos, the league purchased the team and Washington was chosen as the destination for the new franchise in 2004.
They took part in their first MLB Draft in 2005, and took Zimmerman with their first-round pick (fourth overall).
Zimmerman repaid the team’s faith with a .277/.341/.475 line, 284 home runs, 963 runs, and 1,061 RBI, which is more than the Nats probably would have hoped for.
He became famous for his walk-off hits, his two-way talent (he was always a great hitter and was once a very good fielder at third base, in the first part of his career), and later, in 2019, won the first World Series in franchise history.
Zimmerman retires with two All-Star Games (2009, 2017), his 2019 World Series ring, a Gold Glove Award (2009), and two Silver Slugger Awards (2009, 2010).
Have a nice retirement, Mr. National.NEXT: Juan Soto May Be Eyeing A $500 Million Deal