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Twins sign Fernando Rodney for one-year, $4.5 million

Say hello to your veteran closer to start the 2018 season.

MLB: Colorado Rockies at Arizona Diamondbacks Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

While the starting pitching market has remained slow over this week’s Winter Meetings in Orlando, relief pitching has been flying off the shelves: the Phillies signed Pat Neshek and Tommy Hunter; the Rockies landed both Greg Holland and Bryan Shaw; the Cubs scooped up Steve Cishek and Brandon Marrow; the Mariners got Juan Nicasio; and late last night the Nationals nabbed Brandon Kintzler. Names started coming off the board so quickly I was afraid the Twins would have nothing left to sign.

But the Twins acted in time, signing Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $4.5 million deal.

Yes — 41-year-old Fernando Rodney.

You probably know Rodney from his many years with the Detroit Tigers, or because of his perennially crooked hat, or his animated bow-and-arrow mound celebration. After all, he’s spent 15 years in the majors, posting a career 3.73 ERA with a 1.35 WHIP and 9.0 K/9 rate. While his last few years haven’t been quite as pretty (he has a 4.12 ERA with a 9.7 K/9 since the beginning of 2015), he still adds depth to the Twins bullpen.

What this signing says to me is that Thad Levine really wasn’t kidding when he recently said he thought the Twins already had their future closer on the roster. At 41, Rodney looks to be just a veteran closer to act as a stopgap until the Twins think a younger guy can take over. I mean, it’s worth noting the Twins only gave Rodney a one-year deal, and every single one of the other relievers I listed above got multi-year deals.

Though I’m not sure how I feel about Rodney — his meltdowns seem more memorable to me than his successes for some reason — it’s not a bad signing. The $4.5 million he’s guaranteed (with a max of $6 million possible with bonuses) is not much money on today’s market, given a pitcher with a history of success like Rodney. The fact it’s only a one-year deal also ensures it doesn’t block the slew of young arms the Twins have — like J.T. Chargois, Jake Reed, John Curtiss, among others — from developing into cheap, major league contributors.

My only fear, perhaps, is that we’ll rudely find out Rodney doesn’t have much left in the tank. Even then, it’s only $4.5 million.

With the addition of Rodney and today’s earlier Rule 5 draft pick, the 40-man roster now stands a 39 players.


How do you feel about the Twins signing Fernando Rodney?

This poll is closed

  • 5%
    Love it! Perfect fit.
    (40 votes)
  • 44%
    It’s fine for the price.
    (339 votes)
  • 33%
    (253 votes)
  • 11%
    Is this a joke?
    (87 votes)
  • 4%
    I’m dead inside anyway.
    (35 votes)
754 votes total Vote Now