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Rays' Fernando Rodney voted majors' top reliever, AL comeback player

Fernando Rodney is voted the majors’ top relief pitcher and the AL’s comeback player.

JAMES BORCHUCK | Times

Fernando Rodney is voted the majors’ top relief pitcher and the AL’s comeback player.

ST. PETERSBURG — Where Fernando Rodney came from makes what he did in 2012 even more impressive.

The Rays closer received a pair of awards Friday that cover both aspects. He was named Major League Baseball's delivery man of the year and the American League comeback player of the year.

The delivery man award, voted on by a major-league panel for the "most outstanding relief pitcher," acknowledges his performance. He converted a team-record 48 of 50 save chances, went 2-2 and posted a majors-relief record 0.60 ERA.

The comeback player award, voted on by MLB.com writers, recognizes his turnaround from 2011, when he went 3-5 with three saves and a 4.50 ERA in 39 games for the Angels.

"Fernando was a significant part of the success we enjoyed in 2012, and he personally had a historic season in many ways," Rays executive vice president Andrew Friedman said. "It's nice to see him recognized."

Rodney joins Carlos Peña (2007) as Rays to win the comeback player award, which was first given in 2005.

Giants catcher Buster Posey was named the National League comeback player. The former FSU star was limited to 45 games in 2011 because of a broken leg but returned this year to win the National League batting title (.336) and get a career-high 24 homers and 103 RBIs.

Also receiving votes for the relief award, which also started in 2005, were Atlanta's Craig Kimbrel (3-1, 42 saves, 1.01 ERA) and Baltimore's Jim Johnson (2-1, majors-most 51 saves, 2.49 ERA). Rodney is expected to receive some votes in the American League Cy Young Award balloting. The winner will be announced Nov. 14.

Magadan leaves Bosox for Rangers

Dave Magadan, a Tampa native and former Jesuit High standout, is leaving the Red Sox to become the Rangers' hitting coach, replacing Scott Coolbaugh.

Magadan, 50, had been Boston's hitting coach for six seasons, and the club held an option on his contract for next season. Because the Red Sox are mired in a search for a manager, team officials gave Magadan permission to talk to other teams.

More Red Sox: The Red Sox, long thought to be interested in John Farrell as a candidate to replace fired manager Bobby Valentine, have asked the Blue Jays for permission to talk with their manager, the Associated Press reported. The teams are discussing compensation if Farrell, who has one year left on his Jays contract, is eventually hired in Boston, the report said. The Red Sox have also interviewed Brad Ausmus, Tony Pena, Tim Wallach and DeMarlo Hale.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

Rays' Fernando Rodney voted majors' top reliever, AL comeback player 10/19/12 [Last modified: Saturday, October 20, 2012 10:30am]
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