Jason Monti, 27, is going to retire after his final start at home Friday against the Sugar Land Skeeters after six years of professional baseball. The righthander was drafted in the 25th round by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2007. In rookie ball in 2007, he made 19 relief appearances and went 5-0 with a 3.65 ERA with a 35/5 K/BB ratio in 37 innings. Monti made 21 appearances with Class A Auburn in 2008 and went 4-1 with two saves and went to spring training with the Blue Jays in 2009. He spent last season with the Ducks and went 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 20 games out of the bullpen. He struck out 33 in 30 innings. Monti has appeared in 26 games this season, including seven starts and is 6-4 with a 3.64 ERA.
Why have you made Friday your last game?
Sometimes you realize it’s time to call it quits. I just got married in March and my wife Kerri and I have done the long-distance thing for eight years. She’s from Boston. She was a point guard at Sacred Heart and we went to college together. We want to enjoy our marriage. It’s time to move on with the next chapter of our lives.
What will that be?
We are going to St. Croix for the next four months. We both got jobs at a restaurant and will work four days a week and then enjoy the other three days. We’re doing something out of the ordinary. I am trying to get a position with the NYPD. I hope to be in the academy in December. My wife is a teacher and she’s going to move to New York with me and find a job there.
How difficult was it to make this decision?
It’s very tough. It’s been so much fun playing for the Ducks. The last two years have been great. Last year was one of the most fun seasons I ever had in pro ball. We fell just short of a championship. We have great camaraderie. It’s every kid’s dream to get drafted and it happens for very few. Just to get drafted is an honor. I had an amazing experience to go through that process. Friday is going to be an emotional day.
You were selected to the All-Star Game last week for the first time in your career. What was that like for you considering it is your final season?
It was the best way to end a career. I had a blast. I was soaking in every moment. It was one of the best days I had in baseball next to being drafted.