Former White Sox pitcher Gio González retires from MLB after 13 seasons

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Tori Rubinstein
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Former Sox pitcher Gio González retires after 13 seasons originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Former White Sox pitcher and two-time All-Star Gio González has retired. The lefty had three separate stints with the White Sox in 13 major league seasons.

In an Instagram announcement on Thursday, González voiced his gratitude to the White Sox organization for allowing him to finally pitch in a big league game for the team that drafted him with the 38th-overall pick in 2004.

"The White Sox, full circle, drafted me at the age of 18 and met back up 12 years later. Thank you for giving me a chance to put on a major league jersey and pitch for the team that drafted me. Truly special moment,” González wrote.

The White Sox traded González, along with Aaron Rowand, to the Phillies in 2005 in exchange for slugger Jim Thome. He was traded back to the South Side in 2006, where he led the minor leagues in strikeouts in 2007.

In 2008, González made his MLB debut in Oakland, where he was named to the first All-Star team of his career in 2011.

His most successful years, though, were with the Washington Nationals. In 2012, González set a team all-time record by pitching 25 consecutive scoreless innings and made his second career All-Star team later that year. He ended the season with a major league best 21 wins, a 2.89 ERA, 207 strikeouts and a third-place finish in the NL Cy Young vote.

González returned to the White Sox for the third time in 2019 on a one-year, $5 million contract with an option for 2021. He appeared in 12 games for the 2020 squad and finished the year with a 1-2 record, a 4.38 ERA and 34 strikeouts.

González’s retirement comes after a brief 2021 spring training stint with the Miami Marlins, in which he appeared in one game.

"I gave it one last fight, unfortunately my body wasn't keeping up with my mind," González wrote on Instagram. "My heart and my mind are finally at peace with my decision."

Related: Vaughn and other Sox options for replacing Eloy

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