Padres Add Fernando Rodney to Bullpen Mix


The San Diego Padres added veteran reliever and closer Fernando Rodney to their bullpen Wednesday, according to multiple reports the deal is worth about $1.5M for the year with incentives based on performance for the 38 year old veteran. Rodney started the 2015 season with the Mariners before being designated for assignment and finishing out the season with the Cubs.

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The man who is know as much for his off-center hat and post-game arrow shooting as much as his actual pitching was the MLB saves leader in 2014 but couldn’t find the same magic in 2015. In 54 appearances he had just 16 saves and had blow six saves to come up with a 5.68 ERA before being released by the Mariners. He finished strong with the Cubs and does come with 236 career saves in 2016 for the Padres.

After trading away Craig Kimbrel and Joaquin Benoit, the Padres back end of the bullpen was void of experience. Giving Brandon Maurer the chance to start would leave the bullpen even more vulnerable, so it is smart for General Manager A.J. Preller to stock up on some experienced relievers to man the later innings as necessary. I still think Jon Edwards or Kevin Quackenbush deserves a chance to save games for the Padres as they attempt to grow from within and for the future. Rather than give a 39 year old the chance to close for a year – why not use Rodney as an insurance policy if Quack or Edwards can’t get the job done to begin with?

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It will be interesting to see how new manager Andy Green manages his bullpen corps, an area former manager Bud Black was seen to have an adept hand.

Rodney had his most success with Tampa Bay, closing 85 his two seasons there before coming over to Seattle. His best year was in 2012 when he made his first of two All Star Teams (at 35) and finishing 5th in Cy Young Award voting. He provides some nice veteran experience to the young Padres bullpen and at a good price. The Padres have added several arms over the last week as the bullpen rebuilds on a budget to replace Kimbrel and Benoit. Just how long it takes for that arrow gag to get at Petco Park remains to be seen.