How have the Orioles fared against K-Rod?
July 24, 2013
Francisco Rodriguez is an Oriole. Acquired in a trade for minor leaguer Nick Delmonico, Rodriguez - aka K-Rod or Frankie - was 1-1 with a 1.09 ERA and 10 saves in 25 appearances for the Brewers in 2013.
The revitalized O's came to be defined by their bullpen last season. The K-Rod trade adds some intrigue to the 2013 relief corps, which is creating a new identity.
Rodriguez is a known commodity league-wide after tallying 62 saves in 2008; however, his work in the A.L. West for the Angels and then in the National League for the Mets and Brewers makes him a less-familiar face in Baltimore.
I went back to see what Rodriguez has done in fairly limited action against A.L. East opponents, because let's face it, we all want to know if a guy is going to help us beat teams like the Yankees and Red Sox. Of interest, but perhaps not tremendous significance, is that the Orioles have been the biggest thorn in the closer's side among A.L. East teams (career splits).
Overall, the O's have the top OPS against Rodriguez of any major league opponent. Here's the rundown of what A.L. East teams specifically have done against him:
Orioles - 26 games, 112 plate appearances, .253/.333/.444 slash line, four home runs, 2.36 SO/BB
Blue Jays - 24 games, 122 plate appearances, .220/.347/.290 slash line, one home run, 1.55 SO/BB
Rays - 16 games, 65 plate appearances, .161/.246/.304 slash line, one home run, 3.67 SO/BB
Red Sox - 21 games, 91 plate appearances, .169/.242/.265 slash line, one home run, 3.75 SO/BB
Yankees - 34 games, 169 plate appearances, .204/.321/.282 slash line, two home runs, 1.84 SO/BB
It's not that these stats tell us a reliable story; instead, they give us a sense of which fan bases have come to view Rodriguez as "that guy who always beats us."
Now to some specifics. The Orioles have homered four times off Rodriguez. That's the third-highest total among all teams. The O's trail only the Indians (seven) and Athletics (six) and are tied with the Rangers and Nationals for home runs against Rodriguez.
Here are the four Orioles homers off Rodriguez:
July 18, 2003 - Tony Batista homers.
July 20, 2003 - David Segui hits a grand slam on the first pitch he sees from Rodriguez, who entered the game with the bases loaded.
Aug. 23, 2005 - Miguel Tejada hits a grand slam. Tejada was the first batter Rodriguez faced after coming on to try and clean up Kevin Gregg's mess.
July 25, 2008 - Kevin Millar hits a solo shot.