Jamie Moyer harbors no illusions about his recovery from Tommy John surgery, which he had less than a month ago. But he also doesn't want to be told when it's time to hang it up.
Moyer, who turned 48 in November, faces a year to 18 months of rehabilitation, meaning it'll be 2012 -- and he'll be close to 50 -- before he can return to baseball. Yet that is precisely what he is considering.
"In all honesty, I just don't feel like I'm ready to give it up. I feel I'm entitled to make my own decision," Moyer told the Seattle Times. "Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, which people don't seem to be shy about expressing.
"I respect and appreciate when it comes from the right people. The baseball people I've talked to before and since the surgery all have been very positive and very supportive."
Moyer, a free agent, spent last season with the Philadelphia Phillies, going 9-9 with a 4.84 ERA, but he missed the second half of the season after straining his left elbow in his July 20 start in St. Louis.
He rested the elbow, then began a throwing program toward the end of the season. He was pitching for Escogido in the Dominican Winter League when he was injured Nov. 6 in his third start, and had surgery Dec. 1 to repair the ulnar collateral ligament.
Moyer, 267-204 with a 4.24 ERA in a 23-year major league career -- including 11 seasons with the Seattle Mariners -- told the Times he might return to the winter league next year and see how it goes.
"It may be difficult to find a job at the age of 49," Moyer said, the Times reported. "Then again, it may not be. I know where I stand: I'll probably get a spring training invitation . . . I don't have a problem with that. Throughout my career, I've always had to earn the situation I've been in. I don't expect anyone to give me anything. It's never been that way, so why now?"
In the meantime, Moyer told the Times, he will be devoting his energy to his eight children, as well as his charitable foundation.
"It will be nice spending family time," Moyer said, according to the Times. "Maybe I'll get to the point I like that more than I like to play. We'll see."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.