It’s looking more and more like 2008 will be Francisco Rodriguez’s last season with the Angels. His ’08 contract situation is not said to be the reason he’s late to camp. But the two sides are a solid $2.5MM apart and Rodriguez will try to become the first player to win a hearing this year on Thursday. Mike DiGiovanna thinks the hearing "could lead to animosity."
Rodriguez recently turned 26. He has a career ERA of 2.37 in 383 innings, with 146 saves under his belt. That’s the most saves in baseball history for a pitcher before his 26th birthday. Gregg Olson is next with 131, then Chad Cordero with 128.
Currently scheduled to join K-Rod in the free agent closer class of 2008-09: Joe Nathan, Brad Lidge, Jason Isringhausen, Trevor Hoffman, and Eric Gagne. My very unofficial research says B.J. Ryan received the largest-ever total for a reliever in November of 2005 with $47MM.