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Fernando Rodney unhappy with how Mike Scioscia uses him

Sep 14, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Photo Day Getty Images

Fernando Rodney began this year as the Angels’ closer, but was quickly stripped of ninth-inning duties and has spent most of the season pitching in low-leverage situations while rookie Jordan Walden racks up saves.

Rodney vented his frustration yesterday, telling Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles that he’s unhappy with the quick hook and how manager Mike Scioscia has used him since the demotion:

Four games. In 162 games, that’s not a lot. Look around baseball. A lot of teams have problems with their closers. St. Louis, Kansas City, the Chicago White Sox. They get more chances. I’ve walked too many guys, but I know I can do my job. I feel good. I’m a relief pitcher. My whole career, I’m pitching every day or every two or three days. I can’t get comfortable.

The funny thing about Rodney’s complaints is that despite not being “comfortable” he’s essentially pitched the same as always with a 4.50 ERA in 32 innings. During the previous four seasons he posted ERAs of 4.26, 4.91, 4.40, and 4.24.

Rodney has struggled to throw strikes more than usual, which has made it even harder for Scioscia to trust him in key situations, but ultimately he’s been the same mediocre reliever for going on five seasons now. The biggest difference is that the Angels aren’t desperate for relief help and Scioscia has been smart enough not to turn back to Rodney just because he saved a bunch of games in 2009.

Rodney will be a free agent this offseason and seems unlikely to get any offers to close or any offers that approach the $5.5 million per season he got from the Angels.

  1. dailyrev - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:03 PM

    Perspective: unemployment rate in CA is 12% last I checked. The ultra-wealthy whine over absurdities while the rest of us on the wrong side of that wall of ignorance keep pushing our boulders in the silence of urgency.

    • dwishinsky - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:50 PM


    • The Baseball Idiot - Sep 14, 2011 at 2:43 PM

      He’s not complaining about the money. He’s complaining about not playing. Big difference. That’s the perspective.

      Nothing wrong with a player wanting to play more than he is. Why would you want anything athlete who doesn’t want to play?

      • sfbookreviews - Sep 14, 2011 at 8:15 PM

        In the end, it is all about the money. All those saves he hasn’t gotten will cost him on his next contract and he knows that all too well. Add that to a 4.50 ERA and more walks than strikeouts and his walk year has been an utter disaster as far as his next contract is concerned.

        THAT’s the perspective.

  2. SmackSaw - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:11 PM

    I’m unhappy that he stinks.

  3. singingfriar - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:23 PM

    Another brilliant Angels free agent signing.

  4. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:24 PM

    Maybe if he squared up his cap it would similarly square up his pitches a bit…I think the bigger news story here is that a reporter talked to Fernando Rodney.

  5. silverdeer - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:24 PM

    The problem he is having with base runners is the reason the Tigers got rid of him. More times that not he would get the save, but I have a hard time remembering the number of times that he didn’t make the inning too uncomfortable for us fans.

  6. dwishinsky - Sep 14, 2011 at 12:49 PM

    I think Angels fans probably are unhappy with how Mike Scioscia uses him – i.e. he does.

    • pitperc - Sep 14, 2011 at 3:03 PM

      Yes, yes we are.

    • hep3 - Sep 14, 2011 at 6:07 PM

      And now that he has called out the best manager in baseball, Rodney is guaranteed to be pitching for another team next year. Guys who mess with Mr. Scioscia don’t last for the Angels and that is how it should be.

  7. jimatkins - Sep 14, 2011 at 5:34 PM

    When you actually demonstrate the ability to pitch in a pressure situation, you get used in such situations. When you have a track record that is at best mediocre, you get to be the garbage-time mop-up. The facts are all there, and they indicate Rodney is in no way closer material.

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