2009 Reds

Reds sign Arthur Rhodes

It appears that the Reds have signed lefty reliever Arthur Rhodes, according to Ken Rosenthal (thanks for the tip, Phill):

The Reds have reached a preliminary agreement with free-agent left-hander Arthur Rhodes to a two-year, $4 million contract. The deal is pending a physical, which the 39-year-old Rhodes will take Friday.

Rhodes appeared in 61 games last season — 36 for the Mariners, 25 for the Marlins — and had a combined record of 4-1 with a 2.04 ERA.

Initial reactions: Rhodes probably improves the bullpen, so the Reds are probably better today than they were yesterday. I say “probably” because Rhodes is 39 years old, and I’m not going to bet the ranch on the performance of any 39-year-old, and because he only pitched a handful of innings last year (small sample size worries).

Also, I don’t like the two-year deal — especially since last year was Rhodes’ first good season since 2005 — but it’s not something I’m going to get worked up about. (A) it isn’t my money, and (B) current ownership understands the concept of sunk costs. This deal isn’t likely to be an albatross…unless Rhodes turns into a left-handed Danny Graves overnight.

Yes, I’m torn, but this deal isn’t clearly bad, in my opinion; neither is it clearly good. What do you think?

16 thoughts on “Reds sign Arthur Rhodes

  1. I’d compare this to what Reyes is asking for. Both Rhodes and Reyes are LOOGYs (aka left-handed pitchers who come in to face only left-handed batters)

    Reyes wants $4M/year for 3 years. They’re likely to put up similar numbers in the short-term (2009). If Rhodes has two years in him, then you just got him at a great bargain without the risk of the third year. If he only has one year in him, then you still got that 1 year at $4M market value.

  2. I can’t fault this signing given the overall market for relief pitching. Would rather have kept Affeldt, but it does not look like that was in the cards.

  3. I like it because now Bray doesn’t have to be the lefty specialist in the pen.

  4. Other than Rhodes’s age, I like this a lot. He is a serious power lefty.

    Check out these career splits:

    Bray (vs. RHB) – .274/.342/.456
    Bray (vs. LHB) – .282/.354/.382

    Affeldt (vs. RHB) – .275/.348/.414
    Affeldt (vs. LHB) – .250/.335/.410

    Rhodes (vs. RHB) – .245/.333/.402
    Rhodes (vs. LHB) – .221/.289/.325

    WOW! That is some serious dominance vs. lefties for Rhodes.

    But look at his numbers vs. righties! Not bad at all, and in fact, better than Affeldt (who Dusty did NOT use as a LOOGY) and Bray are vs. righties.

    Anyway… I’m happy we got him. I love low-hit, high-K pitchers. Just hope he won’t get old just yet!

  5. That gives us what……25 pitchers on the 40 man roster? My guess is a couple of them at least will be traded. Given that, I think our new outfiled will be Dye, Dickerson, and Bruce with Hairston at number 4.

  6. I think Majewski is still on the 40-man. I wouldn’t count on him making it to opening day.

  7. What do I think???

    I think this is just like the Mike Stanton, Chris Hammonds, Rheal Cormier moves…

    an aging lefthander coming off a lucky good season, squeezing us for a 2 yr deal so we can eat the second year when he sucks the first year.

    Rhodes was at his peak in OAKLAND, a pitchers park, when he threw 10mph faster. He’s gonna get killed in the NAti.

    And the cheapness is gonna cost us here. This is the slippery slope.. because for jsut 2-3M more we could land Joe Beimel a bonafide stud in his prime.

    It is not coincidental that the one good lefthanded reliever we have signed was the youngest of the bunch: Jeremy Affeldt — who we promptly lost because he is the one guy who we didn’t sign to a multi-year deal like the aformentioned geezers.

    This deal sucks and it will sink our ship because Rhodes will get murdered next season.

  8. I’m with Dan. I like this, other than Rhodes’ age. Rhodes is a lefty reliever who is tough on lefties, can anyone even remember when we last had such a pitcher ?

    Why all the post-season love for Affeldt ? He wasn’t so popular during the season, and was too erratic to serve as the 8th inning guy when Burton was out. (Instead Weathers, unjustifiably scorned on this blog, did a good job.)

  9. Aaron – I have no clue why you are so high on Beimel and down on Rhodes. Beimel is a “stud”?? Rhodes had a “lucky year”? I don’t know what numbers you’re looking at.

    6 out of Rhodes’s last 8 years have been better than any year that Beimel has EVER had.

    Rhodes has more K’s than hits allowed in his career. (About 9 K’s per 9 innings)

    Beimel has allowed about twice as many hits as K’s in his career. (About 5 K’s per 9 innings)



  10. Ever notice what happens to these situational lefties once they come to the Reds?

    All of a sudden they can’t find the plate, they don’t retire their batter(s), and next thing you know, ka-BOOM! Another late-inning meltdown.

    Must be voodoo.

  11. Saying that about Danny Graves is not fair. He was a two time All-Star who is the Reds all time save leader. He also did a lot for the community and deserves better than that.

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