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Derek Lowe leaving baseball

Derek Lowe pitched for the Rangers briefly this season.

Gregory Bull/AP

Derek Lowe pitched for the Rangers briefly this season.

Former Red Sox pitcher Derek Lowe has decided he has thrown his last pitch in Major League Baseball, calling it quits after 17 years.

Just don’t call it a retirement.

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The 40-year-old pitched in nine games for the Texas Rangers this season before being cut May 23.

“I’m officially no longer going to play the game,” Lowe told USA Today. “It’s still enjoyable, but the role I was having wasn’t fulfilling.”

Lowe spent eight seasons with the Red Sox, winning a World Series title in 2004 as part of the team’s starting rotation. He won the three series-clinching games in the team’s postseason run that ended the franchise’s 86-year title drought. He churned out a Cy Young-worthy season in 2002 for the Sox, finishing third in voting after piling up 21 wins and 8 losses. It was the best season for the two-time all-star.

In his 17 seasons, he was 176-157 with a 4.03 ERA.

Lowe told USA Today: “Like I told my dad, I’ll never retire. If you’re not playing, it’s completely self-explanatory. I’m not going to go to the Hall of Fame, so I don’t feel like I need to have a retirement speech.

“But I was able to play 17 years on some pretty cool teams and win a World Series. So, everyone’s got to stop playing at some point, and this is my time.”

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