Eduardo Rodríguez (left-handed pitcher)
Rodriguez with the Boston Red Sox
|Boston Red Sox – No. 57|
Born: April 7, 1993|
Valencia, Carabobo, Venezuela
|May 28, 2015, for the Boston Red Sox|
|MLB statistics |
(through September 24, 2018)
|Earned run average||4.10|
Eduardo José Rodríguez Hernández, (born April 7, 1993), nicknamed E-Rod, is a Venezuelan professional baseball pitcher for the Boston Red Sox of Major League Baseball (MLB). Listed at 6 feet 2 inches (1.88 m) and 220 pounds (100 kg), he both throws and bats left-handed.
Rodríguez signed as an international free agent with the Baltimore Orioles' organization in 2010, and was traded to the Red Sox during the 2014 season for Andrew Miller. He made his MLB debut on May 28, 2015.
Minor league career
Rodríguez signed with the Baltimore Orioles as an international free agent in January 2010, receiving a $175,000 signing bonus. He made his professional debut that season with the Dominican Summer Orioles of the Rookie-level Dominican Summer League. He had a 3–4 win–loss record and a 2.33 earned run average (ERA), allowing only 48 hits and no home runs in 65 2⁄3 innings pitched, but he walked 28 batters.
In 2011, Rodríguez played for the Gulf Coast Orioles of the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League, where he had a 1.81 ERA, and a walks plus hits per inning pitched ratio of 1.01. He also made one start for the Aberdeen IronBirds of the Class A-Short Season New York–Penn League in 2011. In 2012, the Orioles assigned Rodríguez to the Delmarva Shorebirds of the Class A South Atlantic League. With Delmarva, Rodríguez pitched to a 5–7 record with a 3.70 ERA in 22 games started, allowing 103 hits and 30 walks in 107 innings, while striking out 73 batters.
The Orioles invited Rodríguez to spring training as a non-roster player in 2013. Baseball America named Rodríguez as the Orioles' fifth best prospect before the start of the 2013 season. Rodríguez started the 2013 season with the Frederick Keys of the Class A-Advanced Carolina League, where he had a 2.85 ERA in 14 games started. He appeared in the Carolina-California League All-Star Game, where he pitched a scoreless inning. Rodríguez was promoted to the Double-A Bowie Baysox of the Eastern League in June. Rodríguez, along with Henry Urrutia and Christian Walker, represented the Orioles at the 2013 All-Star Futures Game in July. He pitched one inning, allowing a hit and recording one strikeout. For Bowie, Rodríguez had a 4–3 record and a 4.22 ERA in 11 games started. After the conclusion of the regular season, the Orioles assigned Rodríguez to the Surprise Saguaros of the Arizona Fall League (AFL). He started the AFL's championship game, pitching three scoreless innings for the Mesa Solar Sox in a 2–0 victory.
Baseball America ranked Rodríguez as the Orioles' third best prospect and the 65th best in baseball before the 2014 season. MLB.com named Rodríguez the 68th best prospect, while ESPN rated him as the 43rd best prospect and Baseball Prospectus named him the 61st best prospect. The Orioles invited Rodríguez to spring training, and assigned him to start the 2014 season with Bowie. He missed five weeks of the season due to a sprained knee, and had a 3–7 win-loss record and a 4.79 ERA with Bowie through July. On July 31, 2014, the Orioles traded Rodríguez to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Andrew Miller. Orioles' general manager Dan Duquette said that he "offered about 50 other pitchers" to Boston before agreeing to trade Rodríguez, as the Red Sox "required" him in a trade for Miller.
Rodríguez started his Red Sox career with the Portland Sea Dogs of the Eastern League. In six starts for Portland, Rodríguez had a 3–1 win-loss record with a 0.96 ERA, with 39 strikeouts and eight walks. He joined the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox of the International League for one start during the International League playoffs, pitching seven innings against the Durham Bulls in the Governors' Cup Finals.
After the 2014 season, the Red Sox added Rodriguez to its 40-man roster to protect him from being selected in the Rule 5 draft. He opened the 2015 season with Pawtucket, where he went 4–3 with a 2.98 ERA in eight starts.
Major league career
Boston Red Sox
On May 28, 2015, Rodríguez earned the win in his MLB debut, tossing 7 2⁄3 shutout innings in Boston's 5–1 victory over the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park. Rodríguez allowed just three hits and walked two batters, while striking out seven on 105 pitches, 68 of them for strikes. Already the youngest Red Sox pitcher to make his debut on the road since 21-year-old Roger Clemens faced the Cleveland Indians in 1984, Rodríguez also became the youngest Red Sox starter to win his debut on the road since Billy Rohr in 1967.
His next two starts were on June 3, when he pitched seven innings giving up just one run, and June 9, when he pitched six scoreless innings. Rodríguez became first pitcher since the advent of ERA as an official statistic in 1912 to have begun his major league career with three starts of at least six innings with one or zero earned runs allowed and at least seven strikeouts.
Overall, with the 2015 Red Sox, Rodríguez appeared in 21 games (all starts), compiling a 10–6 record with 3.85 ERA, while striking out 98 and walking 37 in 121 2⁄3 innings pitched.
Rodríguez suffered a dislocated kneecap in March 2016. He began the 2016 season on the disabled list, making his first start on May 31, giving up two runs in six innings while getting a win over the Orioles. He struggled in his next five starts, pitching to a 8.59 ERA, before he was optioned to Pawtucket in late June. He was recalled to Boston in mid-July.
For the 2016 Red Sox, Rodríguez appeared in 20 games (all starts), compiling a 3–7 record with 4.71 ERA, while striking out 100 and walking 40 in 107 innings pitched.
Despite a difficult first start of the season—giving up four runs in five innings and taking the loss against the Detroit Tigers on April 8—his ERA was at 3.10 or below for all of May. In early June, he went back on the disabled list, after re-injuring his knee while warming up in the bullpen for a start in Baltimore. He returned to the rotation in mid-July.
During the 2017 Red Sox regular season, Rodríguez appeared in 25 games (24 starts), compiling a 6–7 record with 4.19 ERA, while striking out 150 and walking 50 in 137 1⁄3 innings pitched.
The 2017 American League Division Series was the first MLB postseason series for Rodríguez. He made a relief appearance in Game 2; facing two batters, he gave up a single and hit a batter—both runners later scored. The Red Sox went on to lose the series to the eventual World Series champions, the Houston Astros.
Rodríguez began the 2018 Boston Red Sox season as a member of the starting rotation. He made five starts in April, compiling a 3–0 record, plus two no decisions. On July 15, he was placed on the disabled list due to a right ankle sprain. At that point in the season, Rodríguez had an 11–3 record with 3.44 ERA in 104 2⁄3 innings of work spanning 19 starts. On August 20, he was sent on a rehabilitation assignment with the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs. Rodríguez was actived from the disabled list on September 1.
Rodríguez is naturally right-handed. He began to throw with his left arm when he broke his right arm at the age of seven. He throws a fastball that ranges between 90 to 94 miles per hour (145 to 151 km/h). He also throws a changeup that ranges from 83 to 85 miles per hour (134 to 137 km/h), and a slider that he throws between 82 to 85 miles per hour (132 to 137 km/h). Following the trade to the Red Sox, Rodriguez worked with Bob Kipper, Portland's pitching coach, to help him improve his changeup.
Rodriguez is the third of four children. His father works in construction. He played baseball, soccer, and basketball in his youth.
Rodriguez and his wife Catherine have a daughter, Annie, and a son, Ian.
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