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Mark Mulder’s comeback attempt ends with ruptured Achilles’ tendon

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Mark Mulder's comeback attempt after a five-year absence from baseball was poised to be one of spring training's most intriguing and closely followed stories.

Unfortunately, Mulder's body just wasn't willing to cooperate, and his attempt, while valiant, will seemingly end before it could truly get started after the 36-year-old left-hander ruptured his left Achilles' tendon during Saturday's agility drills at Angels camp.

It's an incredibly tough break for Mulder, who according to reports had impressed Angels officials enough in early spring workouts to leave them optimistic he could contribute this season. Now he'll be face-to-face with months of rehab, and perhaps the reality that his body has nothing left to give and his pitching career is truly over.

If the latter were true, it would really be a shame. Mulder's determination to fight back from the myriad of shoulder and rotator cuff issues that led to his reluctant retirement in 2010 was clear in his words and even clearer in his workouts. He really wanted it, and it didn't take teams long to realize his attempt was dead serious.

Soon after, minor league offers started coming in from all over the league. It was basically up to Mulder where he wanted to pitch, and the Angels ended up being the fit he preferred.

And make no mistake, the Angels wanted him, too.

Dipoto isn't the only one. That feeling will extend to every clubhouse around the league once the news trickles out.

According to Mulder, though, the person taking it the worst is his son.

That's tough to hear because it puts Mulder's comeback attempt in a completely different perspective. He wasn't just doing it for himself, he was doing it with the hopes that his son would see him pitch in the big leagues again. It makes his attempt even more admirable, and his disappointment all the more heartbreaking.

We were pulling for you, Mark. And we'll all continue pulling for you regardless of where your career goes from here.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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