Phillies decline 2017 option on Ryan Howard

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Thursday, November 3, 2016

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Philadelphia Phillies have officially declined the 2017 option on Ryan Howard's contract.

This makes Howard a free agent after 12 seasons with the Phillies.

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Philadelphia Phillies baserunner Ryan Howard, left, is safe at home after Cincinnati Reds catcher Corky Miller, right, had dropped the ball in the second inning, Sept. 15, 2004.
AP Photo/Al Behrman

On October 3rd, a special pre-game ceremony honored the team veteran, who was the only remaining member of the 2008 World Series Championship team.

His wife, Krystal, joined him on the field. Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt presented him with a commemorative plaque. For Howard, it was hard to keep back the tears.

"My family has grown with all of you," Howard told the crowd at Citizens Bank Park.

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Philadelphia Phillies star Ryan Howard was honored Sunday at Citizens Bank Park prior to what is believed to be his final game for the team.

Howard's accolades include National League Rookie of the Year in 2005 and the National League's Most Valuable Player in 2006.