The Diamondbacks are in the process of selling the rights to right-hander Rubby De La Rosa to Japan’s Yomiuri Giants, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports. Terms of the deal aren’t known, though Piecoro writes that De La Rosa is “likely to make more significant money” for the Nippon Professional Baseball team than he would if he cracked Arizona’s Major League roster.
De La Rosa underwent Tommy John surgery in August 2017, and then turned a two-year minors deal with Arizona that offseason. The agreement allowed the D’Backs to retain De La Rosa’s rights while he spent all of 2018 rehabbing, with an eye towards being fully healthy this season.
Thus far, De La Rosa seems to be both healthy and effective, judging by his 2.49 ERA, 4.14 K/BB rate, and 12.1 K/9 over 21 2/3 relief innings for Triple-A Reno. Piecoro also notes that the right-hander is again throwing a high-90s fastball, yet despite this apparent success and the overall middling results posted by Arizona’s bullpen, De La Rosa doesn’t appear to be in the Diamondbacks’ plans.
De La Rosa has a significant injury history that includes two Tommy John procedures and a stem cell treatment on his elbow, though he achieved some decent success in appearing in parts of seven big league seasons with the Dodgers, Red Sox, and D’Backs from 2011-17. Over 421 1/3 career innings (starting 70 of 98 games), De La Rosa posted a 4.49 ERA, 2.27 K/BB rate, 48 percent grounder rate, and 7.6 K/9.