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The Red Sox signed Joely Rodriguez

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11:49am: Rodriguez will earn a $500,000 bonus for making it to all 30, 60, 90 and 120 days on the active roster in 2023, MLBTR has learned.

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10:28am: The Red Sox have signed a left-handed reliever Joel Rodriguez On a one-year contract with a club option for the 2024 season, the team announced. Rodriguez, an LA Sports Management client, will receive $2 million in salary, $1.5 million in 2023 and a $500,000 buyout of a $4.25 million club option for the 2024 campaign, reports Chad Jennings of The Athletic (via Twitter).

Chris Cotillo from MassLive.com Tweets Rodriguez could earn up to $2 million in bonuses based on time spent on the active roster in 2023, plus $250,000 per season from the deal based on games served. Overall, it can reach a maximum of $8.25 million over two years. Boston’s 40-man roster now includes 39 players.

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Originally signed out of the Dominican Republic by the Pirates as a teenager in 2009, Rodriguez bounced around to four different organizations before signing with the Chunichi Dragons of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball prior to the 2018 season. He performed a solid two-year run with the Dragons (1.85 ERA in 87 2/3 innings) resulted in Rodriguez securing a major league deal to return to the Rangers.

Traded twice since that time, the 31-year-old Rodriguez has spent a season with Texas and both clubs in New York, hitting a combined 4.28 ERA but more encouraging secondary marks. He averaged 94 mph on the heater, hit 25.5% above average of his opponents and posted a whopping 55.7% ground ball average. Despite a walk rate of 10.3% above average, independent metrics such as FIP (3.14) and SIERA (3.51) all feel Rodriguez pitched a little better than his more primal ERA would indicate.

In particular, Rodriguez excelled at reducing hard contact. The average batty out speed of 85.3 mph last year, the keg rate of 3.8%, and the hit rate of 31.8% are all among the lowest in the league. Statcast ranks each at the 91st percentile or better among major league pitchers. Rodriguez carried a notable platoon with the Yankees in 2021, but when ramping up his use of the sinker/changeup combination (at the expense of most four-seamers and sliders) he was generally rough on both left and right in 2022. -Hander hit .233/.320 / .326 against it, while the right was actually worse, at .220 / .325 / .300.

If Rodriguez can hold on to those gains against right-handed opponents while also reining in his drive a bit – he walked 12% of hitters in 2022 but only 8.7% in 2021 – there is potential for him to raise his profile and prove he’s a good bargain on this. Relatively modest deal.

Rodriguez would step out to a Boston Bull that was otherwise scheduled to include only one left-hander: Josh Taylor. maybe Darwinson Hernandez or a recently selected one Chris Murphy And the Brandon Walter It could eventually make its way into the mix, but left stick assist was a fairly obvious area of ​​need for the Sox. Now they’ve taken at least one step to address that—though others could certainly happen—and they’ve done it in an affordable way. With Rodriguez on the books, Boston’s payroll is up to $133.8 million, while the luxury tax ledger is north of $153 million.

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