Chicago White Sox's Adam LaRoche, 36, announced his retirement March 15, 2016, leaving a $13 million salary behind when the now-retired first baseman was told that "Bring Your Child To Work Day" couldn't be every day and he had to reduce the time his son Drake, spent at the team's clubhouse. Though his reason stands out as a highly unusual one a number of professional athletes have walked away from their sport at the peak of their careers.
Here's a look at some top athletes who left their sport behind early.
In this photo, LaRoche, left, and his son Drake walk to the White Sox clubhouse during a photo day before a baseball spring training workout in Phoenix, Feb. 28, 2015,.
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A safety for the Arizona Cardinals, Pat Tillman refused a contract extension worth $3.6 million in order to enlist in the army following the September 11 attacks at the age of 25 in 2002. He played for only four seasons. He served in Iraq and Afghanistan as an Army Ranger. Tillman was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan.
Tillman was the first professional football player killed in combat since Bob Kalsu died in the Vietnam War. The former Arizona Cardinal was awarded a Silver Star and Purple Heart.
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Jim Brown of the Cleveland Browns was considered by many to be the greatest running back in NFL history, but he hung up his cleats very early.
Brown's last season came at the age of 29 in 1965 after recording 1,544 yards and a league-best 17 touchdowns. In his nine seasons in the NFL, Brown led the league in rushing eight times.
World heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano defended his title six times and was undefeated his entire career. All 16 of his first matches were won by a knockout; he won 43 of 49 career bouts by knockouts. He retired at the age of 32 in 1956.
Swimmer Mark Spitz made an indelible impression at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich winning seven gold medals and setting seven world records. He announced his retirement shortly after the games at the age of 22. His Olympic accomplishments were not surpassed till Michael Phelps came along in 2008 to win eight gold medals.
Spitz did attempt a comeback in the early 1990s at 42-years-old by trying out for the U.S. Olympic team, but didn't qualify.
In the mid-1990s, Sweden's Annika Sorenstam won most major women's professional golfing tournaments - 72 of them. She was L.P.G.A Player of the Year eight times. Tired of the grind, she decided to retire in 2008 to focus on other priorities at 36-years-old.
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Considered by many to be the best NBA player of all time, Michael Jordan's first retirement came in 1993 at age 30 and was a huge shock to the sports world. He cited his loss of interest in playing and his father's murder earlier in the year.
Jordan surprised the sports world a second time when he signed a minor league deal with the Chicago White Sox in hopes of making the majors in 1994. A baseball career was not meant to be, however, and Jordan returned to the NBA in 1995 going on to win three championships. He retired a second time from the NBA in 1999. Then, in 2001, the basketball legend came back one more time to play for the Washington Wizards before retiring in 2003.
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Running back Tiki Barber came out of the University of Virginia and was picked by the New York Giants in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft, playing his entire career for them. He accumulated 10,449 career rushing yards -- the all-time leader in Giants history. He appeared in three Pro Bowl games. His career best was 2,390 yards in 2005, the second highest in NFL history.
Barber retired after a 10-year career at the end of the 2006 season, going on to work for NBC's "The Today Show" and "Sunday Night Football." ESPN reported that one reason he quit was the coaching style of the Giant's Tom Coughlin.
Barber attempted a comeback in 2011, but no NFL team wanted to sign him.
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Argentinian Gabriela Sabatini was a major player on the international tennis circuit through the late 1980s-early 1990s. She became the youngest-ever player in the semi-finals of the French Open at 15-years-old, losing to tennis star Chris Evert.
Sabatini won the U.S. Open women's singles title in 1990, the Wimbledon doubles title in 1988 and a silver medal at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. By the time she retired in 1996 at age 26, Sabatini had won 27 singles titles and 14 doubles titles. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2006.
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Lorena Ochoa is considered the best Mexican golfer ever and the first from her country to be ranked number one. She was NCAA Player of the Year in 2001 and 2002 while she was a student at the University of Arizona. After her professional debut, she became the highest earner on the LPGA Tour in 2003. She retired at the age of 29 in 2010.
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Swedish tennis star Bjorn Borg was a dominant force on the international tennis circuit winning an incredible five straight Wimbledon singles titles and the French Open six times. The Swede won a total of 11 Grand Slam titles in his career. His rivalries with Americans Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe produced incredible tennis. He retired at 26-years-old in 1983.
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According to CBS Sports, the electrifying running back for the Detroit Lions shocked the football world when he announced his retirement at the age of 30, with less than 1,500 yards to go to beat Walter Payton's all-time rushing record.
In his final season with the Lions, Sanders rushed for 1,491 yards with four touchdowns, one season after eclipsing the 2,000-yard mark. His early retirement didn't stop Sanders from making the NFL Hall of Fame.
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Bo Jackson is one of just a handful of athletes who have been All-Stars in two major professional sports -- football and baseball. The fast running back gave up NFL football after just 4 seasons with the Los Angeles Raiders due to a hip injury, retiring at 28 in 1991. Jackson's 221 yards rushing accomplished on Nov. 30, 1987 remains a Monday Night Football record.
He left baseball at the still young age of 31, after the best season of his career.
Michael Phelps has won an incredible 18 Olympic gold medals and 22 medals overall, the most decorated Olympian ever. He surpassed Mark Spitz's record of seven gold medals in one Olympics, winning eight. Having accomplished so much and trained so hard, he quit competitive swimming following the 2012 Summer Olympics in London at age 27.
Announcing that "retirement was pretty boring, to be honest," Phelps returned to the sport at 29 in 2014.