By HOWIE RUMBERG AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Former New York Yankees center fielder Bernie Williams has officially retired _ finally.
The four-time World Series champion last played in 2006 and has already appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot and been dropped for a lack of votes. He agreed to a minor league contract Friday, then signed retirement papers during a ceremony at Yankee Stadium before the Subway Series opener against the Mets.
Not offered a major league contract by the Yankees after the 2006 season, the switch-hitter did not pursue a deal with other teams and turned down New York’s offer to go to spring training with a minor league contract. Williams has joked with former teammates for years that he was still not retired, even though for nearly a decade he has had a successful music career that includes a Latin Grammy Award nomination.
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