The Oakland A’s continue to make moves to improve their team.
The A’s announced on Thursday that they have added Fernando Rodney from the Twins.
— Oakland Athletics (@Athletics) August 10, 2018
The 41-year-old has been shaky at times this season, but he has successfully closed out three straight save chances for the Twins. He has a 3.09 ERA and 25 saves this season.
The A’s are looking to increase their lead over the Mariners for the second wild-card spot in the AL.
Sunday was a pretty busy day for Minnesota Twins reliever Fernando Rodney.
During the Twins’ series finale against the Tampa Bay Rays, manager Paul Molitor elected to bring in Rodney, who usually closes for the team, during the fifth inning. The Rays were up 4-1 with two on and one out, so Molitor pulled starting pitcher Fernando Romero and entrusted Rodney to get the final two outs of the inning, which he did. The Twins would then go on to rally and win in extra innings by the final of 11-7.
Molitor’s seemingly out-of-the-box thinking earned praise on social media.
Interesting move by Molitor to bring in Rodney….in the 5th inning. #MNTwins
— Alex Donovan (@AlexDonovan13) July 15, 2018
Lots of criticism for Molitor in 1st half of season. His move with Rodney early saved game & was eventual difference.
— Tom Cody (@TjdsbTom) July 15, 2018
Yesterday I felt Molitor blew it for the @Twins BUT today his call using Rodney early was SMART and helped us win. And then there is Dozier! Good job Twins! @dbremer_pxp #Givecreditwhereitsdue #2ndhalfisours
— TH (@HinrichsTee) July 15, 2018
It turns out though that Molitor actually had a very specific reason for using Rodney that early. 1500 ESPN’s Judd Zulgad revealed Rodney to leave in the middle of the game around 3 PM CST for an immigration hearing in Miami.
Earlier today the baseball world loved what Molitor did when he brought in Rodney to get two huge outs in the fifth. So what was the thinking in this genius strategical decision? Molitor: Fernando had an immigration hearing in Miami and had to leave just after 3 p.m.
— Judd Zulgad (@1500ESPNJudd) July 15, 2018
For Rodney, who hails from the Dominican Republic, it was probably quite a balancing act with the game beginning at 1:10 PM. Also complicating matters was that it was played at home in Minnesota instead of in Tampa Bay, which is just a few hundred miles away from Miami.
As for the 44-50 Twins, this is just the latest oddball occurrence in a season that has often trended towards the bizarre for them.
The Boston Red Sox are reportedly hoping to add a reliever ahead of the July 31 trade deadline.
According to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, the Red Sox are looking far and wide for bullpen depth. One option is Minnesota Twins closer Fernando Rodney, who has still been effective as the team’s closer at the age of 41 this season.
The #RedSox are cutting a wide swath in search of bullpen depth. One name on their list: Fernando Rodney, who is familiar to GM Dave Dombrowski from their time together with #Tigers. Rodney, 41, has 18 saves and a 2.97 ERA for #Twins this season. File it under "worth a look.''
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) July 7, 2018
The Red Sox are in fine shape. They’re 60-29 and they have an established closer in Craig Kimbrel. It’s just a matter of getting him the ball with the lead. Given how close they are with the New York Yankees in the AL East race — and how the Yankees may be poised to make a splash themselves — expect Boston to be active this month.
There’s a little bit of a beef brewing between the Angels and the Mariners this year.
The teams have been two of the best in the AL this season and are competing for a playoff spot from the AL West. They also had a great 3-game series in Anaheim over the weekend, with the teams splitting 3-2 extra-innings wins the first two games, and the Angels getting a walk-off 6-5 win on Sunday.
Rodney walked Trout to start the 9th, and Pujols inside-outed a fastball down the right field line for a tying double to make the score 5-5. After Trout scored the tying run, he and Pujols exchanged arrows to mock Rodney, who fires a bow and arrow as his save celebration. Keep in mind that after escaping a jam in the 8th inning, Rodney did his arrow celebration and pointed it towards the Angels dugout.
After allowing the tying run, Rodney gave up a single, intentional walk and got a double play. Following another intentional walk, Grant Green hit a walk-off RBI single to give the Angels their 59th win of the season.
There will be other days for Rodney, but you know this had to hurt. And he has no room to get mad at the Angels for mocking him when he started things by pretending to fire one of his arrows at the Angels dugout.
“Fernando’s animated. Our guys noticed it,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said after the game.
Angels starter Tyler Skaggs, who took a no decision, had even better quotes.
“I did not,” Skaggs said when asked if he saw Rodney fire the arrow at the Angels dugout, “but I heard about it and I’m glad we scored and won because that’s ridiculous. Just goes to show you — don’t rile up our team because we have a lot of good players. I’m looking forward to the rest of the season. I’m looking forward to the next time we play them.”
What goes around comes around. Also keep in mind that Rodney pitched for the Angels in 2010 and 2011 and was not happy by the end of his stint with the team. After losing the closer job in 2011, Rodney complained about his lack of a role and said the team should trade him. Maybe some of that beef with the coaches still lingers for him.
Here’s another angle for Pujols doing the bow and arrow:
Fernando Rodney has been nearly unhittable during the World Baseball Classic, and he is one of the reasons the Dominican Republic reached the championship game of the tournament. Of course, if you ask Rodney, a piece of fruit may be the reason why he’s having so much success.
During introductions before the Dominican’s semifinal game against the Netherlands Monday, Rodney pulled out a plantain from his pants.
According to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi, Rodney said after the game that the lucky platano (Spanish for plantain) told him, “If you keep me close to you, you’re going to get the win.”
Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan says Rodney had the plantain flown in from the Dominican Republic to San Francisco before Monday’s game, which the Dominican won 4-1.
Whatever Rodney is doing is working. He has six saves for the 7-0 Dominican squad, and he has only allowed one hit and no runs in 6.1 innings while walking three and striking out six.
H/T Cut 4