Monica Abbott, the greatest pitcher in Tennessee softball history and a mainstay with Team USA, has announced her retirement.
“Today’s the day and my heart is so full. 16 years I’ve played professionally, 20 years with Team USA and I got to play for you, I’ve got to throw rise balls with a heart full of joy and love. I’ve got to entertain you from the pitcher’s circle. I believed in building a better future for women, for women athletes, for the youth of tomorrow,” Abbott wrote Tuesday on Twitter.
“Today I’m going to say, this is going to be it for me. I’m going to retire from playing softball on the field. It was my greatest honor and joy to be able to step on the mound and pitch for you all. So I want to thank you for supporting me through my playing career and I can not wait to go on this next journey and this next chapter with you, from the other sides of the white lines. thank you so much for all your love and support from throughout the years. Although I won’t be standing on the mound throwing fireballs for you, I look forward to impacting the game of softball and finding new ways to inspire you all. I’m retired.”
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While at Tennessee, Abbott broke career records in victories (189), strikeouts (2,440), shutouts (112), appearances (253) and innings pitched (1,448). She threw 23 no hitters including six perfect games while in college. She was the first All-American in school history and was All-Women’s College World Series Team three times.
Abbott’s No. 7 jersey was retired by UT in 2013, the first softball player in school history. She is also a member of the Tennessee Athletics Hall of Fame.
Abbott was on the U.S. team which won silver in 2008 and 2020 at the Olympics and had the first perfect game in the Olympics in 2008. She has won three ISF Women’s World Championships and six World Cups of Softball.
Her most recent Team USA appearance saw her help lead them to the 2022 World Games gold medal.
Professionally she has played in the National Pro Fastball league in America and the Japan Softball League.
In 2016 the expansion Houston Scrap Yard Dogs signed Abbott to a six-year, $1 million contract. At the time it was believed to be the largest given to an active female athlete in team sports by an individual American professional franchise.