Three-time MVP and 14-time MLB All-Star Alex Rodriguez is saying goodbye to his playing days.

The Yankees and and a tearful A-Rod announced his retirement at a news conference late Sunday morning. Interestingly, the plan is for Rodriguez to become a special advisor and instructor working with the franchise's younger talent. The Yankees will release him from his player contract after Friday night's game (August 12, 2016), and he'll officially hit the market as a player available to all other teams. However, both sides have agreed A-Rod would then sign another deal as the Yanks will bring him back in the his new role.

'I want to make it clear, I'm not a coach,' Rodriguez said when asked about a future as a MLB coach, joking that it would be more likely he'd coach his daughter's basketball team.   He instead said he hoped to bring 'value' to the franchise's young players, saying the bridge from the team's Class-A affiliate in Tampa, FL to the Bronx was a long one.

Rodriguez failed to fight back tears, breaking down several times while making the announcement. 'Accepting the end gracefully is part of being a professional athlete,' he said.

Cashman also stated that A-Rod 'could change his mind', apparently meaning he could decide not to take an advisor's role with the team, or possibly decided to sign and play elsewhere.

Rodriguez - whose 696 career HRs places him fourth on the all-time home run list - signed a 10-year, $275 million in 2008, meaning he is under contract through the 2017 season and is slated to earn $21 million, according to GM Brian Cashman said Sunday that the team will pay Rodriguez everything he's owed in his contract.

A-Rod said Hal Steinbrenner reached out to him on Wednesday and floated the idea. When asked if thought he could still play and chase his 700th career homer, A-Rod replied, 'Sure, of course, I think I can still play baseball, you always think you have at least one more hit in you.' He also indicated the immediacy of the change was preferred by Steinbrenner, however both sides agreed he'd get at least more chance to play at Yankees Stadium.

Manager Joe Girardi hasn't played Rodriguez much in the past month. On Sunday, he referred to his time on the bench as 'embarrassing.'

Rodriguez's career has been full of success and controversy. On numbers alone, A-Rod is a Hall of Famer. However, he's become a hated villain for his reported failed PED test in the early 2000s, and his suspension for all of the 2014 season for his ties to the Biogenesis scandal.

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