Former-Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez agreed to a minor-league deal with the division-rival Philadelphia Phillies that includes an invitation to Spring Training last night.
The right-hander was one of the best relievers at one point and in 2008 recorded an MLB single-season record 62 saves with the Los Angeles Angels. He also had a 2.24 ERA, 67 strikeouts, and 3.22 FIP in 68.1 innings pitched that season.
Following that season, the Mets signed K-Rod to a three-year deal worth $37 million.
While he was still effective as a closer, notching 83 saves in the two-and-a-half years he spent with the team, he had some off-the field-issues that ended up tainting his tenure with the team and prompted Alderson to essentially dump him prior to the 2011 MLB trade deadline.
Those off-the-field issues were highlighted by an incident in 2010 in which he was forced to get surgery on his right thumb and miss the last two months of the season after beating up the father of his girlfriend at the time. You can read more about that in this article by NBC Sports.
After his tenure with the Mets was completed, K-Rod went on to pitch Milwaukee Brewers (twice), Baltimore Orioles, and Detroit Tigers.
He even regained his closer role from 2014-2016 as he had 126 saves during that time span.
However, he lost that job in 2017 in Detroit and was released by the team after recording a 2-5 record, 7.82 ERA, and 1.658 WHIP while blowing six of his 13 saves attempts to start the season.
He appeared to have also lost the ability to miss bats as he recorded only 23 strikeouts in 25.1 innings.
Jon Heyman of the FanRag Sports Network spoke to Rodriguez recently, in which the 36-year old reliever said that he believes he has re-found his velocity and is ready to go out this season and prove that he can be a dependable reliever again.
He has a strong resume, on the field, to suggest he might be able to have some value to the Phillies this season. For his career, Rodriguez has accumulated 437 saves along with a 2.86 ERA, 1,142 strikeouts, 1.155 WHIP, and 3.31 FIP.