David Price has been the subject of numerous conversations and trade rumors over the course of the 2014 season. In the midst of all that talk, the big left-handed starter for the Tampa Bay Rays has been enjoying a solid season in which he is throwing harder and striking out more hitters.
Those results earned him a nod in the All-Star game. Unfortunately for Price, an illness this week pushed his scheduled start back to this weekend and will force him to miss the midsummer classic. On Saturday it was announced that Fernando Rodney of the Seattle Mariners will take Price’s spot on the American League roster.
Rodney has been outstanding in 2014, leading the American League with 27 saves and posting a 1.98 ERA. Rodney is apparently following a pattern in which he pitches well in even years: he was outstanding in 2012 while pitching for the Rays, he seriously struggled in 2013, and now he is producing on an All-Star level once again.
Rodney said that he was aware there he was a chance he would be added to the roster once pieces got shuffled around and that he is excited for the opportunity. As quoted on MLB.com:
“I’m going to have fun. I’ll throw my arrow. No matter what inning I pitch, I’ll throw it…
…When you see something happen like that, you have to understand what’s going on. I knew I had maybe the numbers to be there. I’m happy to be there with that group of people.”
Rodney’s turnaround in 2014 can be attributed in large part to his improved command. His BB% in 2013 was an unimpressive 12.4%. He has that number back down to 8.1% in 2014. As a result of that success Rodney will represent the Mariners in the All-Star game.