Always A Tiger
For full access to all our areas, please register (free), there are areas that do not show up until you register and log-in.

Always A Tiger

A place for Detroit Tiger Fans to learn and talk about their Favorite Baseball Team, as well as just enjoy one another's company.
 
HomePortalFAQSearchRegisterLog in
Please log in and join in the fun of game day threads (GDT) and in overall Tigers chat.
CONGRATS TO CABRERA AND HUNTER on winning 2013 Silver Slugger Awards!
DETROIT TIGERS - 2011, 2012 & 2013 AL CENTRAL DIVISION CHAMPS!

Share | 
 

 FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER

Go down 
AuthorMessage
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Sun May 03, 2009 5:17 pm

Rodney not afraid to rely on fastball
Going with the heat critical to closer's early success

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

05/03/09 2:39 PM ET

DETROIT -- Joel Zumaya finished off the eighth inning Saturday with a changeup when Grady Sizemore was expecting fastballs. The Indians stepped to the plate against Tigers closer Fernando Rodney looking for changeups and got a heavy dose of fastballs instead.

For a closer whose fastball command has always been a question, Rodney's ability to make opponents pay when they look for the changeup is key. Saturday, it was critical to getting out of a ninth-inning jam with the potential tying run on base to preserve Detroit's 9-7 win.

"I saw the first two hitters I faced sitting down on the changeup," Rodney said. "The last two hitters, I saw they were waiting on a slow pitch, and I [reacted]. I have a pretty good fastball, and I'll throw it. I have to lead with my fastball now."

Asdrubal Cabrera led off the inning with an infield single off a fastball before Victor Martinez flew out to right on a changeup. After Shin-Soo Choo lined an 0-2 changeup to right to put runners at the corners, Rodney threw only one changeup over his final four pitches. The rest were fastballs.

Mark DeRosa went down swinging at a high fastball. Jhonny Peralta battled Rodney to a full count before he swung and missed at an inside fastball.

Rodney has given up one run on three hits over five innings with a walk and five strikeouts in five save situations, converting all of them. He has allowed four runs in as many innings on seven hits in four non-save situations.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


Last edited by TigersForever on Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:53 pm; edited 2 times in total
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Sun May 24, 2009 9:52 pm

Saturday, May 23, 2009
Lynn Henning
With Tigers' Rodney, it's substance over style

Fernando Rodney must know how it feels to be mayor. You never can win with the constituents.

There always is something for which the citizenry can blame its civic boss: budgets, services, inevitable miscues, etc., and sometimes worse, as local history will attest.

Likewise, there always is some grievance Tigers fans have against the man who became the closer this year: walks and hits, for example, which he sometimes allows in ninth-inning efforts that aren't always 1-2-3 stints.

But what matters to a team, of course, is whether the job gets done. And Rodney has been a mission-accomplished kind of pitcher: Eight of eight save opportunities have been handled successfully.

Never mind that fans seem to flip a coin when Rodney comes in to pitch: Do we watch the ninth inning or opt for a Freddy Krueger movie?

Look at the numbers beyond those successful saves and you see the anxiety is fairly baseless.

No, it's not always pretty

Rodney's ERA (3.50) is neither sparkling nor embarrassing. And his WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched), a better barometer of what a pitcher is responsible for, is a solid 1.06.

By contrast, Bobby Jenks of the White Sox has a 2.40 ERA and 1.13 WHIP, and owns a strikeouts-to-walks ratio similar to Rodney's. Kerry Wood of the Indians has horrific numbers: 7.71 ERA, 1.86 WHIP, with 16 hits and four home runs in 14 innings.

What matters, as Todd Jones taught fans through the years, is not always how a ninth inning is closed -- but whether the team is shaking hands afterward.

Rodney's style, for sure, isn't confused with the mow-'em-down ways of Joe Nathan of the Twins, or, before he became a mortal, Mariano Rivera of the Yankees.

He succeeds mostly because of a change-up that (a) Rodney can control better than his fastball; and (b) is fairly unhittable even when a batter is sitting on it. The change-up got him out of trouble a couple of times this week, including Thursday, when Rodney came within an inch of blowing a save against the Rangers.

Eye on the prize: Free agency

Make no mistake: The Tigers would love to have an intimidator who pretty much has that game's save in his pocket before he reaches the mound. And they believe they soon will, in either Joel Zumaya or Ryan Perry, and probably by next season.

Zumaya and Perry are closer to the shut-the-door brand of closer teams covet. But they aren't likely to dislodge Rodney this season, at least if he keeps recording saves, no matter how nerve-wracking they might be.

Next year will be different. Rodney is six months from free agency. And, as long as his numbers hang in the general vicinity of his 2009 statistics, as well as those racked up during his career, the 32-year-old right-hander will be signing a nice, fat, multi-year contract with some team aching for a closer or set-up man as reliable as Rodney, no matter what the Tigers camp thinks of his tension-inducing ways.

lynn.henning@detnews.com
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Rodney remains perfect in save chances   Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:11 am

Rodney remains perfect in save chances
Tigers closer shutting door despite several shaky outings

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

06/25/09 6:22 PM ET

DETROIT -- Say this about Fernando Rodney: He hasn't been perfect in his pitching this season, but he remains a perfect closer. And he's working well with traffic on the basepaths, even if it's traffic he creates.

For the fifth time in his last six chances, and the second time in 24 hours, Rodney brought the potential tying or go-ahead run to the plate in a save situation. In Thursday's case, against the Cubs, Rodney allowed a leadoff homer to Micah Hoffpauir and a two-out double to Kosuke Fukudome. Yet once again, he made the big pitch to escape, striking out Geovany Soto on a nasty changeup that finished off the series sweep with a 6-5 win.

A night earlier, Rodney retired the side in order with runners on first and second, striking out Milton Bradley on a fastball that left Bradley trying to snap his bat over his leg. Jake Fox flew out to one of the deepest parts of the ballpark, then Kosuke Fukudome stood at the plate stunned at a called third strike on a high changeup.

With Thursday's save, Rodney improved to 16-for-16 in save chances, the longest streak by a Tiger since Todd Jones converted 19 consecutive opportunities in 2006. Nobody else in the Majors has more than 12 saves without blowing an opportunity this season.

Rodney did allow the baserunners that erased a ninth-inning lead this season when he walked the bases loaded June 9 against the White Sox. However, it was Brandon Lyon who allowed the runs to score, saddling him with the blown save.

Much like Jones, Rodney's saves haven't often been clean, but they've included big pitches when he has needed them. What's critical in that situation is that Rodney now believes he can make the big pitch. That hasn't always been the case.

"In that situation, I know I have a pitch I can throw," Rodney said. "I can move the ball both sides of the plate. And I feel more comfortable this year, because [manager Jim Leyland] gives me a chance. It's important to me that he gives me a chance, and I can show every night, every time I go to the mound, I can do what I'm supposed to do."

Leyland is concerned with the trouble Rodney encounters. And after Rodney began Wednesday's ninth inning with a four-pitch walk, Leyland came to the mound and gave Rodney a reality check.

"I told Rodney, 'Come on, you're better than this,'" Leyland said. "'You're just throwing it and falling off the mound. You're got to drive right to the hitter.'"

That seemingly got Rodney focused, though he gave up a single right after that.

Part of the issue Rodney faces, Leyland believes, is that his energy gets going ahead of his arm when he has a save situation.

"I can't figure it out. I think the adrenaline has gotten to him a little bit," Leyland said. "It sounds crazy, but when we pitched him a few times ... when it wasn't a save situation, his delivery was much more calm and compact. When it got to a save situation, he got hyped up to where he was overthrowing. I know it sounds nuts, but I think that's true."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:55 pm



Rodney travels unusual road to Majors
Dominican pitcher played other sports, changed positions

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

08/05/09 8:00 PM ET

Our week-long package of stories looking at the Tigers' Latin-American players and how they grew up around baseball continues with a look at closer Fernando Rodney. The package leads up to the Tigers' annual Fiesta Tigres celebration Saturday at Comerica Park.

DETROIT -- To say Fernando Rodney overcame long odds to get to this point in the Major Leagues would be an understatement. For him, simply getting noticed was a gamble.

Rodney didn't spend all his days on the ballfields of Samana, Dominican Republic, as a kid. He had plenty of other things to do. His father worked in town doing various jobs, sometimes as a fisherman on the beaches, other times in agriculture. Rodney would venture out and join him some days after going to school in the morning. Other times, he'd be in school, or at the local gym boxing, or practicing karate or wherever.

Baseball was something he did on weekends, if he wasn't at the beach along the Dominican Republic's eastern coast. To get him serious about it, he said, took a dare.

"One day my friend went to Santo Domingo, to a baseball academy," Rodney said. "And one day my friend said, 'Hey, I think I have a better arm than this guy.' [The guy] said [he'd offer] 100 pesos to go to home plate and throw the ball out to the field. And he threw the ball out.

"And [the guy] said, 'Do you play baseball?' He said, 'Yeah, I like to play baseball. That's what I do in Samana.' And the next day, he signed him. And I said, 'Oh, well, if my friend can do it, why can't I do it, too?' That's what motivated me to play baseball."

He wasn't a hard-throwing pitcher as a teenager, but instead a third baseman and a catcher. After all, he had more of an infielder's size than that of a pitcher. It wasn't until after he took interest in baseball as a profession that he took the mound, starting to pitch in 1996, the year before he signed.

He wasn't a baseball-academy product, but a player in a program. His coach, however, had the ear of scouts. So when he called longtime Tigers talent evaluator Ramon Pena with a couple pitchers for him to see, Rodney got his chance. Rodney threw to Pena, he said, and eventually Pena tossed a contract his way.

The next year, Rodney was pitching in the Dominican Summer League. A year after that, Rodney was in Lakeland, Fla., with the Tigers' Gulf Coast League team.

It's a unique story, as far as Dominican talents go. But, of course, Rodney is a unique personality compared with a lot of players. He didn't know what he wanted to do for a career until late in his childhood. But he also knew enough to realize pitching was his quickest way to get into pro ball, and he knew long-tossing was a way to keep his arm big. He also knew enough that boxing wasn't a career. He sparred with some good fighters, but never entered an organized bout. He liked practicing karate, but didn't feel he could block well enough to avoid getting beaten up.

Eventually he knew enough to pick up English as he made his way through the Tigers' farm system -- not so much through formal instruction as by observation. When he was first in Lakeland, he said, he knew how to say 'Good morning' and 'Good afternoon,' and he knew how to order food at a restaurant. So he would make a 15-minute walk to McDonalds, say hello and order a burger with no pickles or onions.

"Those were the only words I knew," he said.

So how did he learn the language?

"I have an open mind," Rodney said. "I started paying attention around 2000, 2001. I listened more. I paid more attention. It was a lot of work, but most of what I know now is to see people and how they talk -- people on the street, friends, watching TV, a lot of comedies. That's helped me a lot."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Thu Aug 27, 2009 11:05 pm

Control the key for maturing Rodney
Hard-throwing righty evolving as reliable closer for Tigers

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

08/27/09 1:07 PM ET

ANAHEIM -- Fernando Rodney's entrances tend to be loud. His stats somehow are not.

Rodney will walk into a clubhouse with a bellow and a voice that echoes around the room. He trots in from the bullpen for a save situation at Comerica Park to the beats of reggaeton artist Daddy Yankee. He raises his arms to the sky with the final out of a save, once before the third out was even caught.

His personality might be larger than any other Tiger on the roster. His contribution to the division-leading Tigers' playoff hopes are arguably bigger than many give him credit. With each save converted and each clutch out, however, that seems to be changing, and what the Tigers have seen in him seems to be what others are starting to find.

The turbulent outings, the base-loading control issues are quieting, leaving an imposing closer with command of two nasty pitches in his place, and an increasing grip on the ninth inning of a close game.

"That's the evolution of a closer, I hope, right before our eyes," pitching coach Rick Knapp said.

It hasn't been a sure progression over several years, obviously, but there's no longer any question who commands a Tigers lead in the ninth inning.

The conversion rate has been strong all year, and it's becoming more prominent. With 28 saves in 29 opportunities, he's one of just three closers this season with at least 20 saves who haven't blown more than one opportunity, the other two being Major League saves leader Mariano Rivera (36-for-37) and Colorado's Huston Street (33-for-34).

The conversions, though, are just part of it. His two most recent saves show his recent evolution.

After the Angels turned a 10-0 deficit into a 10-7 game in the eighth inning, bringing the potential tying run to the plate, Leyland turned to Rodney for a four-out save for the first time all season. Worse, his first out would have to come against Juan Rivera, previously 4-for-6 against him with two doubles and five RBIs. Rodney got an inning-ending ground ball from Rivera, sat down for a few minutes while the Tigers went down in the order in the top of the ninth, then sent down the Angels in turn with back-to-back strikeouts.

One night later, Rodney began the ninth inning against the top of the Angels order and gave up a leadoff single to Chone Figgins and a walk to Bobby Abreu to put the would-be tying run on base for the middle of the order.

Torii Hunter, Vladimir Guerrero and Rivera were a combined 10-for-22 for their careers against him. Rodney jammed Hunter and Guerrero with 100 mph fastballs on 0-2 counts, then got another grounder from Rivera to end it.

Asked what was going through his mind as those three hitters loomed, Rodney said, "Those are going to be the last three outs."

Those are good words to Leyland.

"I do think the closer dictates a lot of the mentality of the club," Leyland said. "If you have closers that are blowing [saves], that takes some heart out of your team. And when you've got a closer that's closing most all of them, that gives your team that little swagger in that inning that's real important. "

There's a swagger with Rodney. His games might bend, but in close games, they rarely break, no matter who is at the plate. He leaves any movement to his offspeed pitch. The way he's going, he isn't afraid of anyone.

"There's nothing soft about Rodney," Leyland said. "Rodney's a trooper. He's a gamer."

He can carry that mentality, that unflinching confidence, because of his recent stuff. It isn't just about how hard he's throwing lately, growing the distance between fastball and changeup. It's more about how well he's throwing them.

Knapp didn't have Rodney listed as his big project when he came on board, but he had a tool to finally get Rodney to keep working on command. The knee-to-knee drill, standard practice for several teams, calls for a catcher to set up with his mitt on one of his knees, and for the pitcher to try to throw to it without forcing the catcher to move his mitt.

"He's one of the guys that really have taken to that knee-to-knee stuff, the stuff we put in Spring Training," Knapp said. "He's really concentrating on throwing his fastball over more, and it just helps him stay in control. We don't let him go more than two days without getting back on the mound and throwing a little so he doesn't lose the touch."


The Tigers had tried in past years to get him to throw on the side regularly to keep fresh, but the results were inconsistent. His work ethic this season, on the other hand, gets lost in the quirks. But it isn't lost on Knapp.

"He busts his butt," Knapp said. "He really works hard. I mean, he works as hard as anybody. You see him after the game, and he's in the weight room, doing his stuff to make sure he's in perfect tune, ready condition. He's the first one out every day pitching-wise, stretching to make sure that he's prepared. It's not the Rodney that you would stereotype."

Nor are Rodney's secondary numbers. Not only is his percentage of strikes up, it's up big from last year. At 63 percent, it's the best ratio of any of his full seasons, according to research from baseball-reference.com. His first-pitch strike percentage is up from a previous career high of 57 percent last year to 64 percent now.

"For the most part, he hasn't been near the walks that he had early in the season," Knapp said. "He's commanding the ball better."

Meanwhile, with all that work, Rodney's average fastball velocity of 95.8 mph is his highest in the Majors, according to fangraphs.com. He hit triple digits twice against the Angels Monday. His changeup is consistent as always around 84 mph, giving him around a 12 mph difference on pitches that look similar coming out of his hand.

"When you can throw it 98 mph," Leyland said, "and you've got the same action where you can throw it 84 mph, that's pretty good."

When he can locate both of them, hitters have to choose one. The problem there is that Rodney is picking up more and more with experience how to read hitters and quickly read what they're looking to hit. Not only can he can now overpower hitters with all fastballs, he can spot them on the corner for called third strikes.

That produces a lot of confidence, not just from the Tigers, but from Rodney.

"In situations like that -- one-run or two-run lead -- I feel like I have more confidence," Rodney said earlier this month. "No matter if it's a full count, I feel more comfortable. I feel like a monster."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Sat Sep 05, 2009 1:48 am

Rodney: No malice behind heave
Tigers closer launches ball at stands after frustrating ninth

By Alden Gonzalez / MLB.com

09/04/09 11:50 PM ET

ST. PETERSBURG -- Perhaps it was a little bit of frustration, perhaps it was a little bit of celebration. Whatever it was, Tigers closer Fernando Rodney may have earned some trouble after Friday night's 4-3 win over the Rays.

Upon getting Willy Aybar to ground out to first base to cap a frustrating bottom of the ninth -- one he inherited with a three-run lead but made close after giving up two runs and putting runners on second and third with two outs -- Rodney got the ball from first baseman Miguel Cabrera after he touched first and chucked it toward the stands behind home plate.

The ball ended up sailing into the press box at Tropicana Field, bouncing off the first row and toward the back without hitting anybody.

But it was close.

"I was throwing the ball to the fans," Rodney said after notching his 32nd save. "[I was] emotional. It's nothing bad.

"I know I'm not supposed to throw the ball, but I'm feeling in the moment. ... I don't throw it to hit nobody. I think if I throw it in the right spot, I don't hit nobody."

Manager Jim Leyland didn't know about the incident until after the game and declined to comment because he hadn't spoken with Rodney about it.

But he did offer up a joke, saying Rodney was going after the official scorer after some close pitches were called balls.

When asked if he always throws balls into the stands after saves, the 22-year-old right-hander half-jokingly replied: "When the fans are close, I throw it to the fans when it's close. When they're far, I throw it far."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Tue Sep 08, 2009 1:59 pm

Rodney suspended, fined for throw
Closer claims no malice intended in heave toward stands

By Tom Singer / MLB.com

09/08/09 12:42 PM ET

Closer Fernando Rodney's "wild pitch" at the conclusion of Friday's 4-3 victory in Tampa Bay has turned into an expensive heave.

Major League Baseball on Tuesday handed Rodney a three-game suspension for tossing the last-out ball wildly toward the stands, bouncing it off the first row of the Tropicana Field press box. Rodney was also assessed an undisclosed fine for what Bob Watson, MLB's vice president of on-field operations, called "his inappropriate actions."

Rodney's emotional throw did not strike anyone, but it did scatter reporters as it caromed to the rear of the press box.

Immediately after the incident, Rodney claimed to have tossed the ball to the fans. However, to witnesses he appeared to have heaved it in frustration after a difficult ninth inning in which he had allowed two runs prior to securing his 32nd save.

"[I was] emotional. It's nothing bad," Rodney said at the time. "I know I'm not supposed to throw the ball, but I'm feeling in the moment. ... I don't throw it to hit nobody. I think if I throw it in the right spot, I don't hit nobody."

If Rodney appeals, the discipline will be held in abeyance until a hearing. Otherwise the suspension begins with the Tigers' game on Tuesday night in Kansas City.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Change for a Nickel. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Tue Sep 08, 2009 4:07 pm

Rodney to appeal suspension
BECK'S BLOG
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 1:22 PM

A Tigers spokesperson said Tuesday that Fernando Rodney plans to appeal his three-game suspension handed down from Major League Baseball for his throw into the press box at Tropicana Field Friday night. The suspension otherwise would've started tonight against the Royals.

The heave came after Rodney gave up two runs in the ninth inning but still held on to save a 4-3 Tigers win over the Rays. After giving up an RBI single and double, Rodney stranded the potential tying run at third base and go-ahead run at second with a groundout. Rodney got the ball from first baseman Miguel Cabrera and flung it towards the seats behind the plate. The ball hit off the front row of the press seats and bounced into the back of the press box.

Nobody was hit, but it obviously raised safety concerns at the Commissioner's office, as well as in the press box. Rodney insisted there was no malice intended.

"I was throwing the ball to the fans," Rodney said afterwards. "[I was] emotional. It's nothing bad. I know I'm not supposed to throw the ball, but I'm feeling in the moment. ... I don't throw it to hit nobody. I think if I throw it in the right spot, I don't hit nobody."

UPDATE @ 2pm: There is some precedence for this suspension. A Major League Baseball spokesperson cited former Astros reliever and current Diamondbacks reliever Chad Qualls, who threw a ball into the third deck of seats at Angel Stadium after blowing a five-run lead in the seventh inning against the Angels on June 18, 2007. He, too, was suspended three games along with a $3,000 fine. Qualls' appeal was denied about a month later.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:41 pm


Tigers at a glance
2009 record: 85-73
2008 record: 74-88
AL Central: Lead Twins by 3
Possible matchup:
Tigers at Yankees
Magic numbers
Playoffs: 2 Division: 2
Postseason tix: Information

WHO ARE THESE GUYS?

Rodney: Nearly perfect
Inge: Ignoring pain
Verlander: Big statement
Granderson: Good timing
Leyland: Calm, cool leader
Defense: Key to success
Detroit: Tigers lift spirits
Jackson: Back on track
Verlander: Off the charts


Rodney may bend, but he rarely breaks
Tigers closer brings swagger to nailbiting save outings

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

10/01/09 1:47 AM ET

DETROIT -- The numbers don't add up for Fernando Rodney. The presence does.

Tigers fans have spent most of the year wondering how a closer who has blown only one of his 37 save chances this year can make so many of them seem like a thrill ride. Three-run leads have turned into one-run games twice this month. Other games come perilously close, such as the night he walked the bases loaded with Cardinals in a three-run game and escaped with a double play.

Rodney has pitched a perfect ninth inning in less than a quarter of his save situations. He has had multiple baserunners in a dozen.

His teammates and coaches know how he does it. The same mentality that allows him to shrug off the couple runs or hits that bring the potential tying run to the plate allows him to execute the pitch that leaves it there.

"There's nothing soft about Rodney," manager Jim Leyland said last month. "Rodney's a trooper. He's a gamer."

Rodney doesn't get rattled. He might get out of whack mechanically, fling a fastball to the backdrop or spike a changeup in the dirt, but it won't be out of fear. If the Tigers can finish off the Twins and get to the postseason, a ninth inning with Rodney is going to be quite a show on the national stage, just in time for possibly the least heralded closer headed for the playoffs to become a free agent.

There's a statistical dichotomy going on here between the efficiency and the damage. According to research from STATS, no closer with at least 25 saves in a season and only one blown chance has posted an ERA higher than 3.00 since the save became an official stat in 1969.

Rodney's 4.41 ERA would obviously obliterate that mark. Even if he blows another save chance, his ERA would be the highest for anyone with at least 25 saves and two blown opportunities, topping Ryan Dempster's 3.13 ERA.

To be fair, those numbers include a 6.19 ERA for Rodney in non-save situations, either when he's protecting a four-run lead or when he enters in a blowout to get in some work. His 2.89 ERA in save situations is much more reasonable, but still higher than expected.

His on-and-off issues with walks suggest an inconsistency, but there's nothing scattered about his end results. When the Tigers have needed the final out from Rodney, they've almost always gotten it. In that sense, he has blossomed into the front-line closer that Leyland and others in the organization had waited for him to become.

The comparisons some in Detroit have made with Todd Jones aren't well-grounded. Though the sense of suspense might be similar, their styles and routes to get their results are different. Jones mixed pitches, speeds and locations to get hitters to go for the pitch he wanted, not what they wanted.

Rodney is a high-velocity, high-strikeout pitcher whose combination of a high-90s fastball and low-80s changeup from the same motion are devastating. But he's also a pitcher with a history of falling out of form easily, with what used to be devastating results. He has tempered those spells with hard work between outings, throwing a lot of drills designed to improve command.

"He busts his butt," pitching coach Rick Knapp said. "He really works hard. I mean, he works as hard as anybody. You see him after the game, and he's in the weight room, doing his stuff to make sure he's in perfect tune, ready condition. He's the first one out every day pitching-wise, stretching to make sure that he's prepared. It's not the Rodney that you would stereotype."

Like Jones, Rodney is not a pitcher to let an opponent rattle him. His games might bend, but in close games, they rarely break, no matter who's at the plate. Before he sent down Torii Hunter, Vladimir Guerrero and Juan Rivera in order last month against the Angels, he said he knew they would be the final three outs of the game.

More recently, after a Brandon Inge diving catch finished off a Rodney save last Thursday at Cleveland, Rodney returned the gesture by rebounding from a fly ball over center field Curtis Granderson to finish off a save over Minnesota Tuesday.

In other words, there's a swagger, which Leyland loves to see.

"I do think the closer dictates a lot of the mentality of the club," Leyland said. "If you have closers that are blowing them, that takes some heart out of your team. And when you've got a closer that's closing most all of them, that gives your team that little swagger in that inning that's real important."

That confidence from Leyland has meant plenty to Rodney.

"I feel more comfortable this year," Rodney said, "because he gives me a chance. It's important to me that he gives me a chance, and I can show every night, every time I go to the mound, I can do what I'm supposed to do."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Mon Dec 14, 2009 11:09 pm

Mets, Phillies, Orioles Interested In Rodney
By Zach Links [December 14, 2009 at 5:17pm CST]

The Mets, Phillies, and Orioles are all "in" on Fernando Rodney, tweets Jorge Arangure of ESPN.com. However, Arangure adds that nothing appears imminent at this point.

What kind of contract offer would you extend to Rodney, who will turn 33 before Opening Day?


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Tue Dec 22, 2009 8:11 pm

Rodney on Angels' radar?
Posted on December 22, 2009 at 3:14 PM

The Angels are actively bidding for free-agent reliever Fernando Rodney, according to ESPN's Jayson Stark. In his first full season as Detroit's closer in 2009, Rodney converted 37 saves in 38 tries. He could return to a setup role or close in a lefty-righty tandem with Brian Fuentes, who led the Majors with 48 saves in 55 chances.

Rodney, who will be 33 when the season opens, is the brand of hard thrower manager Mike Scioscia likes. Rodney is a Type B free agent who would deliver a suppemental Draft pick, not belonging to the Angels, if he doesn't return to the Tigers. He has appeared in 308 games in seven seasons in the Motor City with a 4.28 career ERA. He had a 4.40 ERA in '09 across 75 2/3 innings with 61 strikeouts and 41 walks.

-- Lyle Spencer


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:34 pm

Halos pursuing Rodney to beef up 'pen
Free-agent righty coming off two seasons as Tigers closer

By Lyle Spencer / MLB.com

12/22/09 6:10 PM EST

With Darren Oliver having departed for Texas, the Angels reportedly are seeking to replenish their bullpen with free-agent right-hander Fernando Rodney, Detroit's closer the past two seasons.

According to Jayson Stark of ESPN, the Angels are in active pursuit of Rodney, who converted 37 saves in 38 tries in 2009, going 2-5 with a 4.40 ERA in 73 appearances. Working 75 2/3 innings, he had 61 strikeouts and surrendered 41 walks.

If he agrees to terms, Rodney could be employed in a setup role or close in a lefty-righty tandem with Brian Fuentes, who led the Majors with 48 saves in 55 chances.

Rodney, who will be 33 when the season opens, is the brand of hard thrower Angels manager Mike Scioscia prefers. Rodney has produced 314 career strikeouts in 330 innings across seven seasons, while walking 170 hitters and yielding 300 hits. His lifetime ERA is 4.28.

A Type B free agent, Rodney would not cost the Angels a Draft pick. The Tigers would receive a supplemental pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft if he signs elsewhere.

Rodney earned $2.7 million in 2009. Fuentes draws $9 million in 2010, the second year of his free-agent deal signed last winter. Fuentes has a $9 million vesting option for 2011 if he finishes 55 games in '10. The ESPN report speculates that the lefty could be used at least part of the time earlier than the ninth inning if the Angels want to prevent the option from kicking in.

The Angels adhere to a policy of not commenting on free-agent negotiations. At the Winter Meetings, however, general manager Tony Reagins indicated that the club would be aggressive in seeking a reliever if Oliver -- who was not offered arbitration as a Type A free agent -- chose another club. The Rangers, an AL West rival of the Angels, offered the advantage of keeping Oliver close to his Dallas-area home. Family was a consideration he mentioned on several occasions last season.

As the Angels weigh possibilities for the starting rotation with the departure of John Lackey, a former Rangers right-hander could be an intriguing alternative.

Vicente Padilla, who excelled down the stretch for the Dodgers, is a free agent at 32. Padilla was 4-0 with a 3.20 ERA in seven starts and eight outings with the Dodgers.

In the postseason, Padilla shut out the Cardinals on four hits across seven innings, nailing down a win in the National League Division Series for the Dodgers. He was 0-1 in two NL Championship Series starts against his former club, the Phillies, finishing the postseason with a 3.63 ERA while allowing 12 hits and four walks in 17 1/3 innings, striking out 13.

A native of Nicaragua known for throwing hard and bringing it inside, Padilla is believed to be seeking a two-year deal totaling in the $15 million range with performance incentives that could bring it to $9 million to $10 million annually.

Padilla is 98-85 with a 4.33 ERA in 305 career games, 221 as a starter. He has pitched for four Major League teams, three times reaching at least 200 innings in a season. Padilla has won at least 14 games in four seasons. Lackey, one year younger than Padilla, owns four more career wins.

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:52 pm

Angels, Rodney said to have deal
Tigers' former righty closer headed to Halos' bullpen

By Lyle Spencer / MLB.com

12/23/09 4:30 PM EST

The Angels have come to terms with free-agent reliever Fernando Rodney on a two-year deal reportedly worth $11 million, according to ESPNDeportes.com.

Rodney, Detroit's closer the past two seasons and a Tigers reliever for seven years, will add depth to the back of the Angels' bullpen in support of closer Brian Fuentes and setup men Scot Shields, Kevin Jepsen and Jason Bulger.

Rodney, a right-hander who has hit triple-digits on the radar gun, gives manager Mike Scioscia a second closing option along with Fuentes, who led the Majors last season with 48 saves.

Rodney converted 37 saves in 38 tries in 2009 and was 2-5 with a 4.40 ERA in 73 appearances. Working 75 2/3 innings, he had 61 strikeouts and surrendered 41 walks.

Rodney, who will be 33 when the season opens, has produced 314 career strikeouts compared to 170 walks while yielding 300 hits in 330 innings across seven seasons. His career ERA is 4.28.

A Type B free agent, he does not cost the Angels a Draft pick. The Tigers will receive a supplemental pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.

Rodney earned $2.7 million in 2009. Fuentes draws $9 million in 2010, the second year of his free-agent deal signed last winter. Fuentes has a $9 million vesting option for 2011 if he finishes 55 games next season.

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
TigersForever
Tiger All-Star
Tiger All-Star
avatar

Aries Location : Ohio

PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:05 pm

_______Angels______ Updated_ Status___ Due Back____ Injury_______ Notes
Rodney, Fernando (P) 03/09 Day-to-day Early March Shin soreness Threw bullpen session March 8.


"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
Back to top Go down
http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER   

Back to top Go down
 
FERNANDO RODNEY CAREER TRACKER
Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Bounty Hunter Tracker IV
» Bounty Hunter tracker IV questions (thanks dave)
» bounty hunter tracker 4 "IV"
» Tribute to Rodney Dangerfield -- classic one-liners...
» yamaha 250 bear tracker

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Always A Tiger :: MLB NEWS AND TEAMS :: MLB AL TEAMS :: Anaheim Angels-
Jump to: