Daniel Murphy retiring from baseball after 12 seasons

Free-agent first baseman Daniel Murphy is retiring from the sport, he announced Friday.

"This is a beautiful game, and I really just feel humbled and blessed that it let me jump on the ride for a little bit," Murphy told SNY. "It's beautiful. It can teach you about so many things. And all I can say is, thank you."

Murphy, 35, was a three-time All Star and a .296 career hitter with the New York Mets, Washington Nationals, Chicago Cubs and Colorado Rockies. He reached the World Series with the Mets in 2015, when he was MVP of the National League Championship Series, and was the NL MVP runner-up in 2016, his first year in Washington.

He never really flourished in his two seasons at hitter-friendly Coors Field after signing a $24 million deal in December 2018 and was replaced at first base last season by Josh Fuentes. Murphy hit .269 with 16 home runs and 94 RBIs in 172 games with the Rockies, dealing with a finger injury in his first season in Denver.

Murphy became a free agent after his $6 million mutual option for 2021 was declined by the Rockies, but he told SNY that he felt like he was going to retire by the end of last season.

He also told SNY about feeling terrified ahead of his first big league game and how those nerves "never really went away."

"I don't think we get less scared. I think the more we do it, we get braver," Murphy said. "So I don't think I got less afraid in my career. I think the more times you do it you're like, 'OK, you are nervous, and they are good. You want to perform well. And it's tough, but you're brave enough to do it. You did it yesterday, you'll do it today.'"

ESPN's Buster Olney and The Associated Press contributed to this report.