Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Before Sunday’s game versus the New York Yankees, Brewers’ closer Francisco Rodriguez was having a perfect season. He was 15 for 15 in save opportunities and had a flawless earned run average of 0.00. And while he blew his first save by giving up a two strike, two out home run to Mark Teixeira on Sunday, he still earned the victory.
Rodriguez was traded in the middle of the 2013 season to the Baltimore Orioles, but re-signed with the Crew this winter. General manager Doug Melvin was shocked more teams didn’t show an interest in him.
"“People forget he was 10 for 10 for us last year. When we fell out of it we traded he and John Axford. But we knew what he had done for us, so we were fortunate to re-sign him.”"
Right-handed reliever Jim Henderson went into spring training with the closer’s title, but on Opening Day, unbeknownst of the media and fans, Rodriguez got the call to nail down the save. And he hasn’t looked back yet.
"He doesn’t throw 95 anymore. He’s 90-91, but unlike other pitchers who have had a loss of velocity, he has a great curveball and changeup and locates his fastball so well. Not to mention how aggressive he is. He’s really been a mentor to our other relievers.”"
K-Rod leads the Majors with 15 saves, and is well on his way to signing a lucrative deal. At 32-years-old, he still has a lot of baseball left in him. Don’t be surprised if he stays in Milwaukee for the next couple of years.