Henry Rodriguez pitched two scoreless relief innings in Tuesday night’s debacle of a loss to the Cardinals. The game followed a familiar pattern for poor Henry. Nats start losing. He starts warming up. He pitches relatively well. Nats lose.
Look at the below image.
That’s seven straight appearances in a Nationals loss. In five of those appearances, Hot Rod has held the opponent scoreless.
Rodriguez has become The Streetsweeper. Cleaning up the mess long after the event is over.
Davey Johnson is a manager with a clear relieving pecking order. Soriano is the closer. Storen and Clippard are the primary set-up men. Stamman and Mattheus are the set-up guys for the set-up guys. This leaves Rodriguez and Zack Duke as the odd-men out. The mop-up guys. The innings eaters.
Rodriguez still has electric stuff. He’s the only pitcher on the team capable of hitting 100-mph on a regular basis. On most teams, he would be groomed as a closer. Indeed, Rodriguez secured 9 saves before imploding last season. If H-Rod continues to excel, maybe he’ll see another day where he’s closing out a win instead of a loss. He’s only 26 years old.
Photos courtesy of Joe Swick Foto
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