Phillies Sign Roberto Hernandez

The Phillies added to their rotation on Wednesday by officially announcing the signing of right-hander Roberto Hernandez to a one-year, $4.5MM contract. In addition to that base salary, Hernandez can earn $1.5MM via incentives. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has learned that Hernandez will earn $200K for reaching 140 and 155 innings pitched, $300K for reaching 170 and 185 innings pitched, and $500K fo reaching 200 innings pitched. Hernandez is represented by Charisse Espinosa-Dash and Jorge Brito of Draft Pix Sports.

Hernandez-Roberto

On the morning that the agreement was reported, GM Ruben Amaro Jr. told reporters that he had an agreement in place with a starter but didn't wish to disclose the pitcher's name until a deal was finalized.

Formerly known as Fausto Carmona, the 33-year-old Hernandez pitched to a 4.89 ERA with 6.7 K/9, 2.3 BB/9 and a healthy 53.2 percent ground-ball rate in 151 innings, marking his first full season since 2011. Hernandez will join a rotation that is fronted by Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels and also figures to include Kyle Kendrick and Cuban right-hander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez as well.

Though his ERA wasn't all that impressive, Hernandez was primarily done in by the fact that 20.9 percent of his fly-balls left the park — a rate that is nearly twice as high as his career mark. Assuming that trend was an anomaly, it could be reasonable to expect a 2014 ERA that more closely resembles Hernandez's 3.60 xFIP or 3.66 SIERA — both of which reward him for solid command and a plus ground-ball rate.

Hernandez's best season came in 2007 when he finished fourth in the American League Cy Young voting after posting a 3.06 ERA in 215 innings for the Indians. A hip injury derailed his 2008 campaign and likely impacted his 2009 season as well, but he came back strong with Cleveland in 2010, posting a 3.77 ERA in 210 1/3 innings and earning his first All-Star selection.

A move to the National League for the first time in his career will likely benefit Hernandez, and his career 57.8 percent ground-ball rate will play well in the small dimensions of Citizens Bank Park. Dierkes reports (on Twitter) that the Cubs were also very competitive on Hernandez, but Hernandez really wanted to pitch in Philadelphia.

Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly first reported the agreement with Hernandez (on Twitter). MLBTR's Tim Dierkes was the first to report the terms of the contract and the incentives structure (via Twitter).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.


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109 Comments on "Phillies Sign Roberto Hernandez"


phillies1102
1 year 8 months ago

It actually hurts to be a Phillies fan sometimes.

KJ4realz
1 year 8 months ago

I was thinking the same thing. RAJ didn’t want to name him because he wasn’t sure what his name was!

JacobyWanKenobi
1 year 8 months ago

I just feel bad for all of those poor baseballs. Baseball abuse is a serious problem people.

KJ4realz
1 year 8 months ago

Pretty good, which I said, doesn’t equal strong.

Rollins and Utley, regardless of age, are still plus defenders. As stated above, Galvis and Hernandez are plus defenders. Asche is average defender, maybe slightly below. Ruiz is a plus defender. I’d say when 3/5ths of your infield is above average it’d still be a ‘pretty good’ defense.

acerulli1
1 year 8 months ago

Utley, Rollins and Ruiz have each shown noticeable defensive regression the last 2-3 years. And Howard is as substandard as they come, and always has been. Ashe being average at third may be their best defensive position this year, if Rollins loses yet another step.

They are average defensively on the left side (Rollins and Ashe) and far below average on the right side (Howard and Utley). No one in the infield is “above average” today.

It’s not 2008 anymore.

Lawrence Levine
1 year 8 months ago

I agree. The worse part bout Ashe is we don’t know if he can hit major league pitching.. if he can’t you are really in a mess at third base Michael Young hit better Rollins had a substandard offensive year as did Ruiz . At least Utley can hit.Howard may be done if his legs are shot

Alpez16
1 year 8 months ago

All i have to say is lol

rct
1 year 8 months ago

I came here to write only ‘LOL’ and then saw your comment, haha. Not that I think it’s an egregiously terrible move or anything, I just find it funny.

John Kreese
1 year 8 months ago

Amaro wasn’t lying. He’s a back end, way back end starter.

Jordan Zutski
1 year 8 months ago

bascially another Kendrick GREAT!

Nick Munyat
1 year 8 months ago

Like Kendrick, but older and with more baggage.

Lawrence Levine
1 year 8 months ago

And Kendrick was the worse starter in the National League the second half of the season

sflomenb
1 year 8 months ago

Disappointed

Phillyfan425
1 year 8 months ago

Lots of groundballs coming. He had better control and more strikeouts last year – leading to a decent xFIP and SIERA (3.60 and 3.66, respectively). He’s a good type of guy to sign (assuming its for a lower end salary) for a team who has decent pitching a year away.

Jerry Mandering
1 year 8 months ago

Beat me to it, this is going to be a better signing than people think.

nepp
1 year 8 months ago

He sucked with Tampa’s superior defense (both overall and due to their shift/positioning) behind him…moving to a more hitter friendly park and with the Phillies creaky defense behind him is not going to improve matters.

acerulli1
1 year 8 months ago

My sentiments exactly. Although moving to the more pitching friendly league could offset some of that.

Who knows? Who cares? They are a 3rd or 4th place team in denial without him, probably no better than a 3rd place team in denial with him.

Zach Ripple
1 year 8 months ago

Doubtful. Philadelphia is a terrible place to pitch, and guys who give up home runs like that aren’t going to get better, even if they are a sinkerballer. Braves and Nationals have good lineups too, and the Mets have added power too.

Dave Traverso
1 year 8 months ago

If the Nationals had such a good lineup, they would’ve made the playoffs last year. They’re an average at-best lineup.

Dave Traverso
1 year 8 months ago

If the Nationals had such a good lineup, they would’ve made the playoffs last year. They’re an average at-best lineup.

phillies1102
1 year 8 months ago

But Amaro is purely a scouting GM, he doesn’t look at analytics as “advanced” as xFIP. Those numbers make me feel a bit better, considering our defense sould at least be average now that Asche is helping out at 3B.

Still, Amaro shouldn’t pay more than $3 mill for this guy, not after he underperformed on the same exact deal

tbslim
1 year 8 months ago

That was essentially his role in TB in 2013. He ate a lot of the innings left open with the departure of James Shields pitching 150+ despite being demoted to the bullpen for September and being skipped a few times otherwise in favor of some of our younger kids. He wasn’t brilliant but he was solid. He was actually effective coming out of the BP sometimes too. I don’t know enough about the Phillies staff to speculate on his role but he’s not a bad guy to have for long relief and the spot start when the schedule requires it. I will admit that I’m glad somebody else signed him so there’s no chance he’ll be back in TB though.

nepp
1 year 8 months ago

I’m now actually sad that it wasn’t Jerome Williams…way to keep lowering those fan expectations, Rube!

Comfy_Wastelander
1 year 8 months ago

Hey, that’s six starters on the 40 man. The way has been cleared for a Lee and/or Hammels trade! Gotta clear that logjam, Ruben!

HHHDMS
1 year 8 months ago

good luck with that, better off signing Roberto Hernandez the former late inning reliever :)

raltongo
1 year 8 months ago

haha yea, I was wondering if he was making a comeback?? Then I saw Fausto Carmona and thought, ohhhhhhhhhh…..THAT guy

Jordan Zutski
1 year 8 months ago

4.67 career era with a whip of 1.42…. Ruben your actually making the team WORST

Nick Munyat
1 year 8 months ago

Ruben Amaro was being truthful about needing a youth movement, you know, because Fausto Roberto Carmona Hernandez is only 33 (as far as we know), which is barely out of diapers compared to the rest of his signings over the past year or two.

Edictor27
1 year 8 months ago

Watch it be an overpay

Ryan
1 year 8 months ago

Hasn’t had a WAR above ZERO since 2010, yet somehow Rube translates that into $4.5M……..well, if you were hoping for an overpay, you weren’t disappointed.

Edictor27
1 year 8 months ago

I was hoping for the contract Lannan got, which I think was 2 Mil or so.

raltongo
1 year 8 months ago

When Scott Feldman gets 3/30 from the ASTROS, 4.5 mil is not really an overpay. Some team on the market would have given him that amount no doubt (Cubs). Ruben doesn’t dictate all of that

BeantownGreen
1 year 8 months ago

Amaro continues his brilliant signings

Cabro Epico
1 year 8 months ago

I miss the name Fausto Carmona

x man
1 year 8 months ago

I miss the name Car-bomb

FS54
1 year 8 months ago

I know right. such a cool sounding name. I wonder why he chose that.

Jonathan T.
1 year 8 months ago

In Amaro’s eyes, Christmas came early.

Jeff Ball
1 year 8 months ago

I know I’m in the minority on this one, but having watched him with the Rays last year, I wouldn’t be surprised if he actually has a decent year. He seemed to be quite unlucky last year in regards to giving up HRs and he drastically improved his SO / BB ratio. If his HR totals come back down to earth, along with pitching in the NL, he could be better then one would think.

acerulli1
1 year 8 months ago

While I wish I could share your optimism, I can’t help but wonder…

Do HR/FB ratios often drop when pitchers move TO Citizens Bank Park?

I know it isn’t the bandbox it appeared to be when the Phillies had a monster offense and a brutal pitching staff that surrendered homeruns like it was going out of style, but you have to admit, it certainly still yields a fair number of cheap homeruns.

Phillyfan425
1 year 8 months ago

Unsustainable ones (like a 21% HR/FB for a career 12.5% HR/FB pitcher) usually do – no matter what park you’re moving to/from.

KJ4realz
1 year 8 months ago

I don’t hate this move. It’s all dependent on the $ though. As a 4th/5th starter in the NL, he shouldn’t be terrible.

Also, the phillies infield d is actually still pretty good.

acerulli1
1 year 8 months ago

First baseman with no range and lousy hands
Second baseman with two bad knees
Shortstop losing range every year, but still has strong arm
Third baseman who looks good at times, but defensive metrics show him as average at best

Yeah, that’s a strong defensive infield.

Matt Mccarron
1 year 8 months ago

Losing range every year? He won a gold glove in 2012, last year.. He had 1 bad year. Utley has proven to be healthy. And with Galvis on the bench, he could defense for Asche late in games.

acerulli1
1 year 8 months ago

He…won…a…Gold…Glove…most meaningless testament to a player’s defensive prowess ever. Jimmy Rollins gets to substantially fewer batted balls the last two years than he used to. He is losing range every year (which is what happens to short stops as their age progresses through their 30’s).

Utley has not “proven to be healthy”. He missed an entire month last year. Just because it was not related to his knees does not mean it didn’t happen. And just because he had one year without major knee problems does not mean his chronic, degenerative condition in BOTH knees has miraculously gone away. Also, his health is irrelevant. He had drastically diminished range last year, healthy or not.

Since 2007, Chase Utley has had a broken right hand (2007), torn left hip labrum (2008), torn right thumb ligament (2010), destruction of the cartilage in his right knee (patellar tendinitis and chondromalacia) (2011), destruction of the cartilage in his left knee (patellar tendinitis and chondromalacia) (2012), strained abdominal muscle (2013)…oh yes, he has been the epitome of health and durability.

I love him, but he has never “proven to be healthy”.

Jeff Miller
1 year 8 months ago

Which is why the Phillies should’ve traded him to the A’s last year for at least OF Michael Choice and let Galvis/Hernandez play 2B.

Brendan Purcell
1 year 8 months ago

Utley’s knee problems (as you probably don’t know because you don’t follow) look to be completely gone. The Phillies found out how to treat them, and it looks like they’re going to be a non-factor. One of the better second basemen in the game.

Rollins is one year removed from a 8.7 UZR/150, and in the past year dealt with an infield and pitching staff in shambles.

Cody Asche has played 50 major league games and some minor league games and you’re already claiming you know how good he is defensively?

This is not a bad signing. What more do you want out of a fifth starter? Matt Garza?

raltongo
1 year 8 months ago

I agree, its kind of hard to hate this move because even if he’s terrible its not a huge investment. 4.5 mil is nothing in this market. Ruben managed to get a SP on a short contract, who wanted to play in philly for virtually nothing in financial terms. Its easy for everyone to poke fun at Ruben’s signings, but apparently he didn’t want to waste over 10 million per season on an average-at-best pitcher (Nolasco, Hughes, Feldman, Colon, Kazmir…)

But……infield D is maybe “still pretty good,” but its regressed quite rapidly

bernbabybern
1 year 8 months ago

Phillies Have Agreement With Unnamed Starter

Phillies To Sign Roberto Hernandez

😀

Phillyfan425
1 year 8 months ago

With drafting a player in the Rule 5 draft earlier, it means the Phillies will make some kind of move (roster is at 40 now, would be 41 with Hernandez – which is why this deal hasn’t been announced, along with him still needing to pass a physical). Something has to happen before this signing goes official.

Rally Weimaraner
1 year 8 months ago

Hope it isn’t too costly a deal, Hernandez/Carmona has only had 2 good seasons, 2010 and 2007.

jalva323
1 year 8 months ago

was it one under Hernandez and the other one under Carmona?