It takes a lot for a major-league player to voluntarily step away from the game, but Seattle Mariners catcher Mike Marjama felt he had more important work to do. Marjama decided to abruptly retire from baseball Monday so he could become an Ambassador for the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA).
The 28-year-old Marjama went public with his battle with an eating disorder in March. In his retirement note Monday, Marjama said the positive feedback he’s received inspired him to take on a bigger role helping others with eating disorders.
Marjama also noted that injuries played a role in his decision to step away from the game. An injury in 2016 revealed Marjama suffered from a Pulmonary Embolism. He was told he would need to take blood thinners for the rest of his life, but doing so would have prevented him from playing baseball. He decided to chase his dream for a few more seasons, but said a recent concussion and back injury caused him to think about his “mission in life and future goals.”
After seven years in the minors, Marjama made his major-league debut in 2017 with the Mariners. With Mike Zunino injured at the start of 2018, Marjama was named the team’s starter on opening day. In his retirement note, Marjama mentioned catching Felix Hernandez’s opening day start as one of his career highlights.
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