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01/12/2007 3:59 PM ET
Former Yankee Jeff Nelson retires
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The New York Yankees announced today that right-handed pitcher Jeff Nelson - who earlier today was signed by the Yankees and invited to Spring Training - has announced his retirement.

Nelson, 40, was a member of four World Championship teams with the Yankees in 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000. He was originally acquired by the Yankees from the Seattle Mariners along with INF Tino Martinez and RHP Jim Mecir in exchange for LHP Sterling Hitchcock and INF Russ Davis on Dec. 7, 1995. After being re-signed by the Mariners as a free agent in 2000, he joined the Yankees for a second stint in 2003 in a trade that sent RHP Armando Benitez to Seattle. In 331 career appearances with the Yankees, he posted a 23-19 record with a 3.47 ERA from 1996-2000 and in 2003.

"I'd like to thank George Steinbrenner, Brian Cashman, Joe Torre and the entire Yankees' family for allowing me to retire as a New York Yankee," said Nelson. "I enjoyed a fulfilling 15-year Major League career, and each season brought experiences and friends that I will cherish forever. But being able to be a part of four World Championship teams with the Yankees, while playing in a place like Yankee Stadium in front of the greatest fans in the world-that time will always hold a special place in my heart."

Named to the American League All-Star Team with the Mariners in 2001, Nelson made 798 career appearances and played in the postseason eight times. He ranks second among all pitchers in Major League history with 53 postseason appearances, behind only Mariano Rivera (73).

Originally selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 22nd round of the 1984 First-Year Player Draft, Nelson resides in Carnation, WA with his wife, Colette and his four daughters, Chandler, Gabrielle, Emily and Alexandra.

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