Yankees love a bargain; sign reliever Trevor Rosenthal
It’s not that the Yankees are trying to sign ALL the free-agent relief pitchers, rather they are leaving no stone unturned, as former All-Star Trevor Rosenthal became the fifth reliever acquired since August 9.
Calling all recently unemployed relief pitchers! If you’ve ever reached the major leagues and worked out of the bullpen, the Yankees may be interested in signing you.
On Tuesday, 29-year-old former closer Trevor Rosenthal inked a minor league deal with Yanks, following his release from the Tigers on August 11.
Rosenthal’s best season came in 2015 with the Cardinals when he was named an NL All-Star on the back of 48 saves in 51 opportunities, while pitching to a 2.10 ERA, 2.42 FIP, 10.2 K/9 and 0.4 HR/9 across 68.2 innings.
Unfortunately, inconsistency and injuries would derail Rosenthal’s once-promising career, as he’d miss the entire 2018 campaign following Tommy John surgery.
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However, because Rosenthal proved himself as an elite bullpen option, the Nationals took a flyer on him this past offseason. The Nats gave Rosenthal a one-year, $7 million deal, with multiple options for 2020 that could have brought the total to near $30 million — had it worked out in Washington.
Alas, Rosenthal did not fare well in the nation’s capital, compiling a 22.74 ERA, 3.632 WHIP, 10.17 FIP, 11.4 H/9 and 21.3 BB/9 in 12 appearances (6.1 innings). After being released on June 23, the rebuilding Tigers signed him three weeks later.
Rosenthal’s time with Detroit was even more limited, culminating in a 7.00 ERA in 10 appearances (nine innings). After being designated for assignment by the Tigers, Rosenthal chose free agency because he must have known that the Yankees are cornering the market on relievers.
While it traditionally takes at least an entire season for a pitcher to regain the full ability of his repertoire exhibited before Tommy John — especially when it comes to subsequent control issues, Rosenthal’s fastball is already reaching 98 MPH and 88 MPH on his slider.
In addition, his spin rate ranks in the 69th percentile, something the Yankees bullpen clearly puts an onus on. Therefore, if Rosenthal can be patient down at Triple-A and the Yanks are able fix his mechanical issues, the Missouri native could be a welcome addition sometime in the future.