Rays close to deal with reliever Rodney
The Rays are close to a one-year deal with RH reliever Fernando Rodney.
Though Rodney told the AP last week in the Dominican the deal, for just more than $2-million, was somewhat official, there is still further work to be done. It seems likely to be wrapped up in the next day or two.
Rodney, who turns 35 in March, would give the Rays another veteran option, and potentially an alternative to Kyle Farnsworth in the closer's role.
He had 37 saves (in 38 chances) for the Tigers in 2009 (despite a 4.40 ERA), but wasn't as effective at the end of games after signing a two-year, $11-million deal wih the Angels, logging 17 saves in 28 opportunities with a combined 4.32 ERA.
One difference was his control.
In 2009, when Rodney was 2-5 with the 37 saves and a 4.40 ERA, he averaged 7.3 strikeouts and 4.9 walks per nine innings, and by allowing 70 hits in 75 2/3 innings, posted a 1.467 WHIP (walks and hits per inning).
In 2010, he was 4-3 with 14 saves and a 4.34 ERA, but averaged 7.0 strikeouts and 4.6 walks, and with 70 hits allowed in 68 innings had a 1.544 WHIP. And last season - which included six weeks on the DL with a back strain and minimal late-season work - he was 3-5 with three saves and a 4.50 ERA, while averaging 7.3 strikeouts and 7.9 walks per nine innings, and allowed 26 hits in 32 innings for a 1.688 WHIP.
Rodney is the reliever who in 2009 while with Detroit earned a three-game suspension when he threw a ball from the Trop field into the press box after getting the final out.