The Washington Nationals are desperate for a closer, so they might sign Francisco Rodriguez.
Have a pulse and an arm that has all its ligaments and cartilage? Come on down! You might just be the next contestant to save the Washington Nationals bullpen this season. It appears as though the Nats are going to be the lucky winner in the very hotly-contested Francisco Rodriguez sweepstakes.
Rodriguez, who has 437 career saves and is the active leader, was released by the floundering Detroit Tigers over the weekend. The 16-year veteran began the year as the Tigers closer, but quickly lost his job. At the time of his release, the artist formerly known as K-Rod had a 2-5 record, 7.82 ERA and had blown six of his 13 save chances. Rodriguez had given up nine home runs in only 25.1 innings. Overall, opponents were batting .292/.364/.642 against the six-time All-Star.
“It’s never fun to tell guys you like, or good people, bad news,” Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said before Friday night’s 1-0 loss to the San Diego Padres. “Franky has had an extremely good career. He was as gracious and as professional as I would have expected.”
Don’t feel too bad for Rodriguez, though. It seems he will not be out of a job for long. The Nationals are ready to scoop him up and inject him into a bullpen that has a 4.88 ERA and 12 blown saves.
There really isn’t too much to say about this move. It will not amount to much more than throwing gasoline on a burning dumpster fire. Rodriguez has a long track record as an elite closer, but he is far removed from his glory days.
You can’t blame the Nationals for trying, and there is always a chance Rodriguez can figure something out in the right setting. Asking him to be the savior (or even useful part) of a bullpen that has not been the same since Drew Storen was unceremoniously dumped for Jonathan Papelon, however, might be an exercise in futility.