Not many people realize how solid of a closer Fernando Rodney has been for the past two seasons. As a setup man for the Detroit Tigers and Los Angeles Angels for the majority of his career, Rodney had trouble finding his niche with either ball club. Well, the Tampa Bay Rays used him as a closer and it worked to both the Rays’ and Rodney’s benefit. As a result, the 36-year-old closer just signed a big two-year, $14 million deal with the Seattle Mariners.
He can thank the Rays for his rapid development into one of the league’s most reliable and fiery closers, but the Rays should thank him for 85 saves in the past two seasons — including a 0.60 ERA in 2012.
Seattle is trying to win, and win now. The addition of Robinson Cano was a big indication that Seattle wasn’t playing around in the free agent market and they were not content with finishing at the bottom of the AL West every season.
Rodney will likely become the team’s next closer as Danny Farquhar and Tom Wilhelmsen will be the team’s setup men.
The Mariners bolster their bullpen greatly because of this deal and Rodney will come in and make an instant impact. He isn’t perfect, however, as he has also blown 10 saves in the past two seasons as a result of a career-high eight blown saves in 2013.
Although he is 36 years old, Rodney still has power in his throwing arm and will be able to blow batters away. While he has somewhat of a temper, Rodney will fit in nicely and complement the bullpen right away.
Great sign by the Mariners.
Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.