The Boston Red Sox have won their arbitration case against left pitcher, Eduardo Rodriguez, per a tweet from The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.
The Boston Red Sox have had a rocky offseason, embroiled in a sign-stealing investigation, losing Mookie Betts and David Price, and more. They had one bright spot in their offseason recently when naming Ron Roenicke the team's interim manager. You could also call winning their arbitration case against Eduardo Rodriguez a win for the beleaguered club.
Rodriguez was seeking $8.975 million for the 2020 season, but the Red Sox were unwilling to pay that amount, so the case went to an arbitrator. In the end, the Red Sox won and Rodriguez lost $675K.
Fans all across social media voiced their displeasure that the Red Sox would quibble over such a small amount (in comparison with millions), but even small amounts in arbitration are common business for teams, and $675,000 is nothing to sneeze over for either Rodriguez, or the Boston Red Sox.
Still, I understand the sentiment from fans, particularly when you view it from the perspective of how well Rodriguez performed for the Red Sox in 2019. The Venezuelan lefty ended the 2019 season sixth in AL Cy Young voting and had amazing numbers.
Joining the Red Sox in 2015, Rodriguez has an overall ERA of 4.03 over five years, but he posted a 3.82 ERA in 2018 and went 13-5, and in 2019 a 3.81 ERA along with a 19-6 record. Additionally, according to stats from Fangraphs, Rodriguez induced ground balls at a cool rate of 48.5 (GB%) and had a K/9 (strikeouts per 9 innings) rate of 9.43 over a hefty 203 innings pitched. To call that a workman-life effort is putting it mildly.
Rodriguez is arbitration eligible through 2021 and will become a free agent in 2022. Whether or not the Red Sox decide to extend him at some point remains to be seen, but certainly the Sox hope to see another year of Cy Young-worthy pitching from the lefty.