David Robertson (baseball)
|New York Yankees – No. 30|
April 9, 1985 |
|Bats: Right||Throws: Right|
|June 29, 2008 for the New York Yankees|
(through May 14, 2013)
|Earned run average||2.94|
|Career highlights and awards|
High school career 
Robertson was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and played his first three years at Central-Tuscaloosa High School. He was a 2-year starter for the Falcons at shortstop and pitcher. He helped lead his team to back-to-back area titles, as well as back-to-back 6A State Playoff appearances. After his junior year, Central High School was split into three smaller high schools, and Robertson attended Paul W. Bryant High School. He led the Stampede to an area title and the Class 5A State Playoffs in the school's first year of existence.
College career 
Robertson played college baseball at the University of Alabama. As a freshman in 2005, Robertson appeared in a team-high 32 games with 3 starts. He compiled a 7–5 record with 8 saves and a 2.92 ERA. He led the Southeastern Conference by limiting hitters to a .183 batting average. He was named Freshman All-SEC and Freshman All-America by Baseball America.
In his sophomore season, Robertson helped lead the Crimson Tide to their 25th SEC Championship. He appeared in 29 games, compiling a 4–4 record with a 3.02 ERA. He led the SEC with 10 saves. Due to Robertson being 21 at the time of the 2006 draft, he was a draft eligible sophomore and was drafted in the 17th round by the New York Yankees. He played summer league in Cape Cod and was named MVP of the Cape Cod League playoffs.
Professional career 
In 2007, pitching for three minor league teams, he was 8–3 with 4 saves and a 0.96 ERA in 84 1⁄3 innings, allowing 45 hits while striking out 114 batters. In 2008, pitching for two minor league teams, he was 4-0 with 3 saves and a 1.68 ERA in 53 2⁄3 innings, allowing 28 hits while striking out 77.
On June 28, 2008, the Yankees called him up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. On August 28, 2008, the Yankees optioned him back to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees with an earned run average of 6.31. He was recalled back to the majors on September 13.
After starting the 2009 regular season in Triple-A, Robertson was recalled to the majors on April 16, 2009, to replace Xavier Nady, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list. The next day he was optioned back to Triple-A to open a roster spot for Juan Miranda. On May 25, 2009, he was again recalled to the majors to replace reliever Brian Bruney. Robertson finished the season with a 3.30 ERA and 13.0 strikeouts per 9 innings in 43 2⁄3 innings.
In the 2009 playoffs, Robertson entered two games in high-pressure situations with multiple runners on base, once in the ALDS and once in the ALCS, and managing to escape the inning without letting any runs score. Robertson received the win in both games.
Robertson finished the 2010 season with a 3.82 ERA and 10.4 strikeouts per 9 innings in 61 1⁄3 innings.
The Yankees entered the 2011 season with the additions of Pedro Feliciano and Rafael Soriano. Robertson lost out to Joba Chamberlain to be the 7th inning pitcher who manager Joe Girardi wanted to bridge to Soriano and closer Mariano Rivera. Injuries to Feliciano, Soriano and Chamberlain put Robertson in the 8th inning setup role, where he achieved 55 strikeouts half way through the season. Robertson was named to the 2011 American League All-Star roster replacing David Price for his first All-Star appearance. He finished the season with 100 strikeouts, becoming the first Yankee reliever since Rivera (in 1996) to record 100 strikeouts in a single season. Robertson finished his breakout season with an AL-leading 1.08 ERA, 13.5 K/9 ratio (2nd in the AL), and an MLB-leading adjusted ERA+ of 410. He also received exactly one (1) point in the voting for both the AL Cy Young Award (the only non-starter or non-closer with a vote) and AL MVP (the only reliever with a vote).
In January 2012, the Yankees and Robertson agreed on a 1-year non-guaranteed contract worth $1.6 million, plus another $25,000 in incentives.
When Rivera went down with a season-ending injury in May 2012, Girardi announced that Robertson and Soriano would share the duties of closing games for the remainder of the season. Robertson himself would be placed on the 15-day disabled list on May 15 after a he strained a muscle in his ribcage, twelve days after Rivera's season ending knee injury. He returned to action on June 15.
Pitching style 
Robertson throws a four-seam fastball at 92–95 mph. Robertson's main off-speed pitch is a curveball in the low 80s. Infrequently, he throws a circle changeup to left-handed hitters in the mid-high 80s. Although Robertson's fastball speed is not unusually high, his long stride toward home plate during his delivery appears to "add" 2 mph to his fastball by shortening the ball's time in flight. His fastball also has a "natural cut" to it, making it appear as if he is throwing a cut fastball.
Robertson has always had a high walk rate (about 1 every 2 innings over his career), but this is mitigated by an outstanding strikeout rate; Robertson has averaged at least one strikeout per inning in every year of his career so far. His high strikeout rate has proved useful in critical late-inning situations — in 2011, Robertson struck out 14 of the 19 hitters he faced with the bases loaded and allowed only one hit. His tendency to invite trouble by walking batters, only to escape it by getting strikeouts, earned him the nickname "Houdini."
Personal life 
His brother, Connor, formerly played for the Oakland Athletics and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Robertson married Erin Cronin in January 2009. They had their first child, a boy named Luke Joseph Robertson, on August 27, 2012.
Robertson and his wife started a charitable foundation called "High Socks for Hope" to help the victims of Robertson's hometown of Tuscaloosa, Alabama deal with the tornado strikes in 2011. Robertson agreed to donate $100 for every strikeout he recorded in the season. For his work, Robertson was nominated for the 2011 Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award.
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- "Yankees Demote Robertson". WFTV. The Sports Network. 2008-08-28. Retrieved 2011-07-23.
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- "PITCHf/x Player Card: David Robertson". BrooksBaseball.net. Retrieved 7 May 2012.
- Verducci, Tom (April 12, 2011). "How a Danish tech company is revolutionizing pitching data". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 28 June 2012.
- Kepner, Tyler (October 19, 2009). "Bullpen Move Backfires on Yankees". New York Times. Retrieved 6 September 2012.
- "David Robertson 2011 Pitching Splits - Baseball-Reference.com". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 28 June 2012.
- "Ex-Tide player eager to show he belongs in the Major Leagues". Tidesports.com. Retrieved 2010-07-29.
- "Connor Robertson". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-10-26.
- Kernan, Kevin (2008-06-15). "Joba II ... With A Twist". NYPOST.com. Retrieved 2010-07-29.
- "David Robertson Stats, Bio, Photos, Highlights | yankees.com: Team". Newyork.yankees.mlb.com. 2010-03-19. Retrieved 2010-07-29.
- Hoch, Bryan; Steven Miller (August 28, 2012). "Robertson gets an inning in on day son is born". MLB.com. Retrieved 29 August 2012.
- "The David and Erin Robertson Foundation". High Socks for Hope. 2011-04-27. Retrieved 2011-08-24.
- "Robertson pledges aid to ravaged hometown | yankees.com: News". Mlb.mlb.com. 2011-05-27. Retrieved 2011-08-24.
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