What’s Next For Wandy Rodriguez?

The Twins, Reds, Mets, Dodgers, and Blue Jays tried to acquire lefty Wandy Rodriguez on July 31st, wrote ESPN's Jayson Stark, but the Astros "never seriously entertained trading him."  Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle wrote yesterday that Rodriguez, the longest-tenured Astro, had his representatives sit down with GM Ed Wade over the weekend to discuss his future.  Wandy hopes to remain with the Astros, but Wade will wait on specific discussions until the offseason.

The Astros have Rodriguez for 2011, as he'll be arbitration-eligible one last time.  The team's victory over the pitcher in a February arbitration hearing will continue to benefit them, as his raise will be added to a $5MM salary rather than a $7MM base. 

If Rodriguez seeks an extension that buys out free agent years, Joe Blanton's deal might be an apt comparison.  Blanton, entering his final arbitration year, signed a three-year, $24MM deal with the Phillies in January of 2010.  Aside from strikeouts, their numbers stack up quite well.  Check out Wandy's projected career numbers through 2010 (with ZiPS projecting the rest of the season) and Blanton's through 2009:

  • Innings pitched: 1026.6 for Blanton, 983.6 for Rodriguez
  • ERA: 4.21 for Blanton, 4.25 for Rodriguez
  • Wins: 63 for Blanton, 63 for Rodriguez
  • Strikeouts: 643 for Blanton, 826 for Rodriguez 

One other point in Rodriguez's favor is that his ERA in his last three seasons should be around 3.50 while Blanton's was 4.22.  Wandy has really turned it around recently after a rough start to the 2010 season.  He had a 6.09 ERA as recently as June 19th, but has allowed five earned runs over his last six starts to drop his season ERA to 4.00.

Rodriguez turns 32 in January, so he qualifies as a late bloomer.  His agent Barry Praver might suggest that as a southpaw who does not depend on velocity, Wandy figures to age well.


Leave a Reply

26 Comments on "What’s Next For Wandy Rodriguez?"


Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

He’s ha an unbelievably strong second half of the season. I expect the Astros will dangle him on the trade market, and even if they can get a top 100 prospect for him, I think it’s best to keep him given the fact that they can get 1 good prospect next summer and that the Astros might be able to compete next season if all expected goes right.

Part of me says they should trade him as well. With his strong second half, tons of teams should be interested in having him in their opening day rotatin. The Blue Jays for example, should not be trading prospects to acqure him, no team who isn’t a clear cut contender should, but the Jays shouldn’t give up anybody for him when they have a strong system already.

I look at a team like the Tigers for example, Comerica is spacious, and Wandy could fit in real nicely in the middle of two righties, Verlander and Scherzer.

bjsguess
4 years 11 months ago

I would think a deal that is slightly better than Blanton’s would be in line. Something around 3/$27.

Personally, I would move the guy if I can get decent talent back. The Astros have so many holes that keeping Rodriguez will only add to payroll and will not make a significant difference in their rebuilding effort.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

But something tells me that they might have a chance to win 85+ games next season. Is it likely? absolutley not, but I’m saying that it might just be worth it to wait it until July before trading him. They have a really good thing going on at in the Astros organization. Really impressive actually.

4 years 11 months ago

What? Where is exactly is this “really good thing”? Dead last or near the bottom in most organizational rankings, playing under .500 at the big league level and have only scored more runs than the Pirates in the NL.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

They are one of the best teams in Baseball since June 30th. Not record wise but stat wise and Ed Wade has really rebuilt the organization.

AstrosWS20
4 years 11 months ago

Yeah but the problem is you make the playoffs based on your record, not your stats.

AstrosWS20
4 years 11 months ago

Sorry but you’re delusional if you think the Astros will or could have a shot at 85 wins next year. The outfield and a few rotation sports are solidified but other than that nothing is certain. The Astros should and probably will go to arbitration with Wandy and trade him next year. They need an innings eater for most of the season and that’s where Wandy fits in but the Astros probably won’t have a legit shot of contending till 2013. They could be a playoff threat in 2012 but not much more. Castro and Wallace have plenty of maturing to do, who knows if Chris Johnson is for real, the bullpen is up in the air, Lyles will take time to reach his potential and the middle infield is in shambles but they have good prospect on the horizon there. The Astros will be back but it will take time.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

I was the guy who predicted the Reds would win the central.

4 years 11 months ago

Most guys would be moved if they could “get decent talent back”.

Move him. It looks as though the Astros are wanting an innings eater with a cheap contract in a career year, then they trade him. It doesn’t make sense for the Stros to trade him at this moment. He is not at peak value, and waivers doesn’t net real value in return. Let Wandy get a good start out of the gates in ’11, and then trade at as close to peak value as possible (outside of a trade last year).

4 years 11 months ago

Once Carlos Lee leaves which I think in 2 years then I am very hopeful that the Astros are contenders. I really like Lee but he is way overdue, and the huge contract is bad for the tema obviously. The Astros have a rookie infield now, and to resign Berkman this offseason for a smaller contract can help.

Pitching looks promising as we have as Wilton Lopez might be the new closer, Bud Norris as a #3 man, Happ might be a #1 or #2, same for Brett Meyers, Alberto Arias should be good coming off his surgery, and Wandy is good for what he does best and that’s eating innings.

I wish that we haven’t signed Brandon Lyon but we live and learn. Lindstrom is streaky ://

4 years 11 months ago

Do you think the Astros will entertain the notion of bring Berkman back next year via free agency? I don’t look for Lance to return but he was always one of my favorites. If he does come back, where would they put him? Brett Wallace seems to be the 1B of the future and Berkman isn’t outfield material anymore.

I don’t understand the praise for Ed Wade (not directed at you Pyland). When he made those offseason deals for Lyon and Feliz I was hopping mad. Building a minor league system is essential, but let’s not kid ourselves; most prospects flop. For every Chipper Jones or Derek Jeter, there are fifty Brien Taylors and Chad Hermansons.

seanbergmanrules
4 years 11 months ago

I’m not completely enamored with Wade, but you can’t criticize him for Lyon and Feliz without praising him for Myers.

As for Berkman, I doubt he comes back. The Astros already have two firstbasemen (Wallace, and lets face it, Lee). While I’m sure McLane wants to from a marketing perspective, I don’t see it happening. I think its much more likely that he signs with the Rangers in order to make another run at the playoffs.

4 years 11 months ago

Brett Myers is the perfect “relapse” candidate. I can’t see him being this good in 2011. What do see in Brett Wallace’s future? He appears to be a Billy Butler type player. As a KC native, I keep waiting for Butler’s doubles power to turn into hoemrun power, but it has yet to happen. Wallace is in a much better home ballpark than Billy so I expect better long ball totals from Wallace. But the short porch might be too inviting.

4 years 11 months ago

True about the comparisons, since you’re from Kansas City look at Alex Gordon… he still has time to improve.

I still have that fantasy in my mind of Lance returning on a discount hometown salary with incentives, but it’d be weird about when and where he will play. I have not given up on Brett Wallace at all, but if he has veteran presence to help then I can see him improving his game. If the Astros can drop down money for Feliz then I would like to see them at least bring Puma(Berkman) back.

Just a fantasy … :/

4 years 11 months ago

you realize Berkman plays for the Yankees now right?

4 years 11 months ago

He is not going to renew to New York, same with Kearns.. Just rentals.

4 years 11 months ago

Actually, Kearns might come back to NY, or at least has a better chance to than Berkman.

4 years 11 months ago

I highly doubt the Astros plan on bringing back his salary. Don’t get me wrong, I would love it, but think that’s why they got rid of him in the first place. I can’t see them entertaining the notion of bringing any high dollar player back until Lee is gone, Period.

4 years 11 months ago

It can go either way, I feel that Berkman would do a discount for the team so he can retire here(Houston, I live here and go to games constantly). If not then it was fun while he was here.

4 years 11 months ago

His, Lance’s, salary is gone and will not come back. He is not a 15mm player anymore. Period.

That being said, what is his value in a highly flooded 1b FA market? About 8mm. Houston could deal with that to have the final Killer B retire an Astro. 3/27 is a better value for Lance than Wandy in my opinion.

Lance is just too streaky. Great when he is on, but man it hurts when he isn’t.

4 years 11 months ago

I can’t wait to see what the offseason has instore for us(Astros). We might see the team finally get talked into being bought by someone else, I know Drayton likes to talk about that during the offseason.

Mark Cuban would be a good fit, he is competitve but he is also a douchebag with a lot of spending money. I heard that the Bush family might wanna go back into the baseball business, but I hope not.

4 years 11 months ago

I do agree with Spandomomium on the Wandy Rodriguez deal above. Seems most likely to me

4 years 11 months ago

He’s a goner, doesn’t make a lot of sense to keep him with just one year of free agency. An expensive extension doesn’t make a lot of sense in a rebuilding mode.

Guest
4 years 11 months ago

I could go either way with Wandy. If there’s a demand for him this offseason and some team offers a top 100 prospect, then I say pull the trigger and trade him. Otherwise, I wouldn’t mind keeping him around until next summer. The Stros rotation next year at the moment projects to be (to me, anyway):

Myers
Wandy
Norris
Happ
Lyles

If you’re counting, that includes two kids that had injury problems this year, and a 20 year old who’s innings would surely be monitored throughout the year. Having two reliable starters at the top of the rotation until the all star break would take a lot of pressure off the young guys in the rotation, not to mention a presumably inexperienced bullpen. Then they can trade Wandy at the deadline for w/e they can get and go w/ makeshift guys the rest of the way.

But like I said, I wouldn’t be opposed to trading him if they get a quality (top 100ish) prospect in return, but I wouldn’t feel any pressure to deal him this winter either. The team will be able to afford him raise from arbitration

TeamCropDusters
4 years 11 months ago

Wandy doesn not deserve Joe Blanton money. Joe Blanton doesn’t deserve Joe Blanton money.

I would give him arbitration next year and hope that he has a strong season before the trade deadline and move him for prospects.

He won’t be worth the money he will get as a FA and he won’t be an integral piece by the time the Astros are ready to compete.

4 years 11 months ago

I agree but it’s hard to make a case for him not to get paid that based upon comparable numbers. It’s all about the $