David Aardsma

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David Aardsma
David Aardsma on July 25, 2013.jpg
Aardsma with the New York Mets
Free agent
Relief pitcher
Born: (1981-12-27) December 27, 1981 (age 33)
Denver, Colorado
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
April 6, 2004 for the San Francisco Giants
Career statistics
(through 2013 season)
Win–loss record 15–17
Earned run average 4.23
Strikeouts 305
Saves 69

David Allan Aardsma (/ˈɑrdzmə/; born December 27, 1981) is an American professional baseball pitcher who is currently a free agent. He has played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox, Seattle Mariners, New York Yankees and New York Mets.

Amateur career[edit]

High School[edit]

Aardsma was born in Denver, Colorado, and attended Cherry Creek High School in Colorado, which was also the high school of Major Leaguers Josh Bard, John Burke, Brad Lidge, Darnell McDonald and Donzell McDonald. He graduated from Cherry Creek High School in 2000.


He attended Pennsylvania State University in his first year of college. He transferred to Rice University in 2001, where he remained for the rest of his college tenure. Playing for the Rice Owls baseball team, Aardsma set school single-season and career records in saves in 2002-2003. In the 2003 College World Series, Aardsma earned two wins and a save as the Owls won their first national championship.

In 2002, Aardsma was a Summer League First-Team All-American.

Professional career[edit]

San Francisco Giants[edit]

The right-hander was drafted in the 1st round (22nd overall) of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft by the San Francisco Giants. He went to the San Jose Giants (Single-A), where he posted a 1.96 ERA while striking out 28 in about 18 innings. He made the major-league roster in 2004, skipping Double-A and Triple-A, and made his debut in the season's second game. In his major league debut, in front of friends and family at Minute Maid Park, he pitched two innings, allowing three hits and walking one, to earn his first MLB win. In his first 6 appearances, he had a 1.80 ERA; unfortunately his success did not last as his ERA ballooned to 6.75 after 11 appearances. After giving up two runs in one inning on April 20, he was sent down to Fresno, the Giants Triple-A team, the next day. He was called up 6 more times throughout the season.

Aardsma's route through professional baseball has been somewhat unique, given that after making the leap from Single-A to the Giants, he was demoted to Triple-A and then subsequently started the 2005 season in Double-A with the Norwich Navigators.

Chicago Cubs[edit]

Along with pitcher Jerome Williams, Aardsma was traded to the Chicago Cubs for veteran pitcher LaTroy Hawkins on May 28, 2005. He spent the season in the minor leagues before returning to the big leagues with the Cubs in 2006, posting a 3-0 record and 4.08 ERA in 45 relief appearances, finishing nine games. Aardsma was especially effective against left-handed hitters, holding them to a .190 (12-for-63) batting average against.

Chicago White Sox[edit]

After a solid 2006 season with the Cubs, Aardsma, along with minor leaguer Carlos Vásquez, was sent across town to the Chicago White Sox in exchange for reliever Neal Cotts. Aardsma started the 2007 season strong. In April, he posted a 1.72 ERA while recording 23 strikeouts in only 15.2 innings pitched; he struck out at least one batter in each of his first 13 appearances of the season.[1] On April 4, Aardsma matched a career high with five strikeouts against the Cleveland Indians. On April 11, as the White Sox visited the Oakland Athletics, he recorded his first American League win. In May, however, troubles mounted and Aardsma finished the month with a season ERA to that point of 4.73 and an ERA of 9.00 for the month.

Following June 2, Aardsma was optioned to Triple-A Charlotte. He was recalled on June 19, but continued to struggle in his last appearances with the team.

Aardsma pitching for the Boston Red Sox in 2008

Boston Red Sox[edit]

On January 28, 2008, the Boston Red Sox acquired Aardsma from the White Sox for pitching prospects Willy Mota and Miguel Socolovich.

He pitched in 47 games for the team that year, going 4-2 with a 5.55 ERA. He also spent two games in the minors, posting a 0.00 ERA for the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox.

Seattle Mariners[edit]

Less than a year after joining the Red Sox, Aardsma was traded to the Seattle Mariners on January 20, 2009, for minor league pitcher Fabian Williamson.[2]

On April 10, Aardsma recorded the first save of his career, pitching 2 innings of relief against the Oakland Athletics. This save also marked the first MLB win for Chris Jakubauskas.

The Mariners gave Aardsma a chance to close a game behind Brandon Morrow. Afterward, he became the team's official closer.[3]

Aardsma during his tenure with the Seattle Mariners in 2009

Aardsma was a projected pick for the All-Star Game, but failed to make both the starting and the reserve roster.[4]

Aardsma followed an outstanding 2009 season with an excellent 2010. Converting 31 of 35 save opportunities, he finished the year 19-for-20 in saves with a 1.80 ERA from June 13 to September 19.

After having Tommy John surgery in July 2011, Aardsma was not offered arbitration by the Mariners and became a free agent after the season.[5]

New York Yankees[edit]

On February 22, 2012, Aardsma signed a contract with the Yankees worth one year and $500,000 with a club option for 2013. Aardsma had been in talks with New York all winter. Cashman was quoted as saying, "The move could help us in 2012, but it has a lot more eyes toward 2013."[6] Aardsma was activated on September 25, 2012 after Steve Pearce and Justin Thomas were designated for assignment.

On October 29, the Yankees elected to exercise Aardsma's incentive-laden $500K club option for 2013.[7] Needing to carry a pitcher who could pitch multiple innings in one game, the Yankees designated Aardsma for assignment before the start of the 2013 season. He was subsequently released.[8]

Miami Marlins[edit]

Desiring the best opportunity for playing time, Aardsma signed with the Miami Marlins, and was assigned to their Class AAA team.[8] He opted out of his contract on May 15, 2013.[9]

New York Mets[edit]

On May 20, 2013, Aardsma signed a minor league deal with the New York Mets.[10] Aardsma was promoted to the Mets on June 8, 2013 from Triple-A Las Vegas.[11]

Cleveland Indians[edit]

Aardsma signed a minor league deal with the Cleveland Indians on January 23, 2014.[12] He was released on March 21, 2014.[13]

St. Louis Cardinals[edit]

Aardsma signed a minor league deal with the St. Louis Cardinals on March 26, 2014.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Aardsma is of Dutch descent, and all of David's great-great grandparents came from the Netherlands. Because of this, he was slated to play for the Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic, but was ruled ineligible and did not play.[15] Of all baseball players in history, the surname 'Aardsma' ranks first alphabetically; his major league debut displaced Hall of Famer Henry Aaron. Aardsma's sister is American actress and beauty pageant contestant Amanda Aardsma.[16]

Aardsma and his wife Andrea have a son, born on June 26, 2010.[17]


  1. ^ redsox.com.
  2. ^ "Mariners acquire RHP David Aardsma from the Boston Red Sox" (Press release). January 20, 2009. Archived from the original on February 25, 2012. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  3. ^ Street, Jim (May 2, 2009). "Mariners closer Morrow lands on DL". Seattle Mariners. Archived from the original on February 25, 2012. Retrieved May 3, 2009. 
  4. ^ "MLB News, Videos, Scores, Standings, Stats, Teams, Players". FOX Sports (MSN). Retrieved July 2, 2009. 
  5. ^ Greg Johns (October 31, 2011). "Injured Aardsma becomes free agent". MLB.com. Archived from the original on June 21, 2014. Retrieved December 6, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Yankees sign David Aardsma". MLBlogs Network. February 22, 2012. Archived from the original on June 21, 2014. Retrieved February 22, 2012. 
  7. ^ Nicholson-Smith, Ben (October 29, 2012). "Yankees Exercise Options For Aardsma, Cano, Granderson". MLB Trade Rumors. Archived from the original on February 2, 2014. Retrieved October 29, 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Daniel Barbarisi (April 16, 2013). "What It's Like When a Player Loses His Job". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on May 20, 2013. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 
  9. ^ "https://twitter.com/jcrasnick/status/334744905828143105". Tweeter. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Mets sign RHP David Aardsma to minor league deal". The Wall Street Journal. May 20, 2013. Archived from the original on January 16, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2013. 
  11. ^ "David Aardsma joins Mets". ESPN New York. ESPN.com. Archived from the original on January 16, 2014. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 
  12. ^ Hoynes, Paul (January 23, 2014). "David Aardsma latest Mets reliever to sign with Cleveland Indians". Cleveland Plian Dealer. Archived from the original on January 24, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  13. ^ Bastian, Jordan (March 21, 2014). "Veteran Aardsma granted release from Indians". MLB.com. Archived from the original on April 7, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Cardinals sign reliever David Aardsma". Associated Press. ESPN.com. March 26, 2014. Archived from the original on June 21, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  15. ^ Matt Meyers (February 21, 2006). "WBC "Carpetbaggers" Create Complaints". Baseball America. Archived from the original on June 21, 2014. Retrieved June 21, 2014. 
  16. ^ Stone, Larry (March 18, 2009). "Mariners' David Aardsma hoping it's finally his time". The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on March 27, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  17. ^ Stone, Larry (June 29, 2010). "Game thread, Mariners vs. Yankees, Tuesday, June 29: M's win 7-4". Seattle Times. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 

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