The Wei Chuan Dragons of Taiwan’s Chinese Professional Baseball League announced this afternoon they’ve agreed to a deal with infielder Ronny Rodríguez (h/t to CPBL Stats). It’ll be the first CPBL action for the 29-year-old, who spent some time in Japan last season as a member of the Nippon-Ham Fighters.
Rodríguez has two seasons of big league experience, logging time at all four infield positions with the Tigers between 2018-19. After seven seasons in the Indians organization, Rodríguez signed with Detroit as a minor league free agent over the 2017-18 offseason. He earned his first MLB call in May 2018 and tallied 206 plate appearances across 62 games as a rookie.
Despite hitting just .220/.256/.335 during his debut campaign, the right-handed hitting Rodríguez received fairly significant run the following season. He appeared in a bit more than half of Detroit’s games and showed intriguing power, popping 14 home runs with an impressive .217 ISO (slugging minus batting average). Yet Rodríguez also punched out at an alarming 27.9% clip while walking in only 4.4% of his plate appearances, contributing to an untenable .252 on-base percentage.
The Brewers claimed Rodríguez off waivers the following offseason, but he never appeared in a game with Milwaukee. He spent the bulk of the 2020 campaign at their alternate training site before being outrighted off the roster that September. Rodríguez’s jump to NPB last season proved unsuccessful, as he stumbled to a .197/.216/.426 mark across 125 plate appearances with the Fighters. He’ll try to more closely approximate the .293/.324/.473 line he’s compiled in parts of four Triple-A seasons during his first year with the Dragons.