Position: Relief pitcher
Year in Review: For a second year in row, Rondón mislaid a preference of Joe Maddon and found himself as one of a final relievers sitting in a bullpen many nights. The consequence of this preference did not find itself discussed mostly in a pages of ball blogs, nonetheless it substantially should have—by a finish of a year, and positively in a playoffs, there were concerns about a coherence of a bullpen. With Koji Uehara injured, Carl Edwards walking too many hitters, and Justin Wilson descending off a face of a earth, a Cubs stared down a high charge of winning in a playoffs with usually dual relievers in whom their manager trusted. Rondón was foul shunted in a playoffs, not even creation a Division Series roster. Even yet he was entrance off an damage from early September, Maddon could have done improved use of a long-tenured righty.
Rondón pitched lights out over a final month, before and after his injury. I’ve epitomised this considerable widen elsewhere, yet it’s value repeating: his final 13 appearances featured no walks, and in his final 10 he gave adult no runs. The deteriorate ERA is unsightly, yet his DRA was 25 percent improved than joining average, and his strikeout rate was a best of his career. Rondón also had a misfortune travel rate of his career, however, doubling his 2016 percentage.
Looking Ahead: It’s a latter cause that looms largest streamer into 2018. Rondón had one of a best travel rates in a bullpen, and was one of a usually Cubs to come in next joining average. A discouraging trend opposite a Cubs’ bullpen, a ceiling travel rate trend among Cubs relievers expected becomes a primary regard of new pitching manager Jim Hickey this offseason and in a spring. Look during his section profiles, though, and one competence start to consider that Rondón doesn’t have a problem during all:
In 2017, Rondón was some-more successful during burying his pitches low and divided to righties and low and in to lefties than he was in 2016. This suggests that Rondón’s travel rate was something of a fluke, or outward his control. There’s a good possibility that Rondón’s sequencing or hitters’ increasing calm opposite him are a producers of a high travel rate, so don’t be astounded if Rondón slashes his travel rate in 2018.
In terms of his role, Rondón’s destiny is murkier. Despite pitching really good for a Cubs in his fourth true year, Rondón will expected remove high-stress innings to Edwards and Pedro Strop. The further of a new closer, a re-emergence of Wilson, or a re-signing of Wade Davis would also pull Rondón down a bullpen ladder. Should a Cubs proposal Rondón a contract—and they should, even yet there are many good relievers on a giveaway representative market—then Rondón should be tapped for likewise high-leverage situations to a aforementioned relievers.
Lead print pleasantness Jim Young—USA Today Sports