Chicago Bandits' Finch Calls it Quits
(Elgin, IL July 22, 2010) Chicago Bandits pitcher Jennie Finch announced Tuesday, July 21, 2010, that she will retire from competitive softball following the National Pro Fastpitch season.
The 6-foot-2 striking blonde was the most dominant softball pitcher of her time and gave her sport a new face as it was really starting to gain popularity in the United States. Finch won a NCAA championship in record-setting fashion. She also won gold at the 2004 Olympics in Athens and silver four years later in Beijing. Earlier this month she helped the U.S. win its seventh straight world championship.
Coupled with her softball skills, Finch's beauty and charm gave her recognition in the mainstream.
"She set the standard for softball in a new era of being able to be feminine and play this sport," said U.S. outfielder Jessica Mendoza.
After 10 years of playing internationally, the 29-year-old softball legend has decided to that she'll play one more week with the U.S. team and retire from the sport next month when the National Pro Fastpitch season is over.
Finch says she plans to turn her focus to her family, Ace, her 4-year-old son, and husband Casey Daigle, a pitcher who has split this season between the Houston Astros and Triple-A Round Rock.
Finch also hopes that eliminating the travel and training will give her more time to help promote her sport, both through her own camps and possibly through a role in USA softball or as a coach or team owner.
"I hope to stay involved," Finch said in an interview with The Associated Press. "It's been such a big part of my life and I can't imagine my life without it."
Finch's final game is scheduled with the Chicago Bandits' last regular-season game on August 22 at Judson University.