2010 Rule 5 Options: Aneury Rodriguez

The Rays left Rodriguez unprotected for the second year in a row.

For the second year in a row, the Tampa Bay Rays left Aneury Rodriguez unprotected from the Rule 5 draft.  The Rays originally acquired Rodriguez prior to the 2009 season, in exchange for starting pitcher Jason Hammel.  Rodriguez went to the Rays’ AA affiliate, putting up a 4.50 ERA in 142 innings, with a 7.0 K/9, and a 3.7 BB/9.  The performance wasn’t enough for Rodriguez to be selected in the 2009 Rule 5 draft, which would have required that he make the jump from AA to the majors.

Rodriguez was a top prospect in the Colorado system, with a 92-94 MPH fastball.  After going to the Rays, his fastball velocity dropped to the high-80s.  It remained in that range in early 2010, although Rodriguez did make the jump to AAA after some time back at the AA level.  After two starts in AA, Rodriguez moved up to the AAA level, with a 3.80 ERA in 113.2 innings, along with a 7.4 K/9 and a 3.9 BB/9 ratio.

Rodriguez has a much better chance of sticking in the majors this year, which makes it a surprise that the Rays left him unprotected again.  One concern is his velocity.  There are reports that he was only hitting the high-80s in the early part of the 2010 season.  While Rodriguez has touched 94 MPH, he can’t really be viewed as a 92-94 MPH pitcher, with the reports over the last two years.

Rodriguez did have success at the AAA level in 2010, which could make him a strong candidate to make the jump to the majors to start the 2011 season.  If he was in the Pirates system right now, he’d be mentioned as a candidate for the major league rotation at some point during the 2011 season.  Dejan Kovacevic says that Rodriguez is a strong possibility for the Pirates with the first overall pick.

Last year Rodriguez was my favorite player in the draft, despite having to make the jump from the AA level.  He had a better year this year, and at a higher level.  There are still questions surrounding him, such as his velocity, and he didn’t exactly have the best control.  There have also been mixed reports on how effective his changeup can be.  Rodriguez would be a good pick, and if selected, could compete for a spot in the 2011 rotation.  If he doesn’t land that, he could use some time in the bullpen to adjust to the major league level, possibly making the move to the rotation later in the 2011 season, or in 2012.  As an added bonus, if he got his fastball velocity back up to the 92-94 MPH range, he could become one of the better pitching prospects in the upper levels of the organization, joining the 2010 Altoona rotation.

Share This Article

Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

Nice Start For Claggett, Key Doubles For Ciriaco and Noris

Next Story »

2010 Pittsburgh Pirates Winter Meetings Preview

  • http://twitter.com/yokedog22 Cory Yokel

    Question, Do you only get one rule 5 selection or do you get as many as you’d like as long as you have the 40 man space?

    • http://www.piratesprospects.com Tim Williams

      As long as they have the roster spots, they can select as many as they want.

Latest Analysis

  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Jose Tabata Changed His Swing After Talking With Marlon Byrd

    3 hours ago

    Yesterday, Jose Tabata put one on the roof of the batting cages over the left-field fence at Pirate City. Today, he added two more. By that pattern, ...

    Read More
  • Antonio Bastardo

    How Ray Searage is Trying to Fix Antonio Bastardo’s Control Issues

    5 hours ago

    Tony Watson has established himself as one of the best left-handed relievers in the game. Out of 142 qualified relievers last year, he ranked 21st in WAR, ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Q&A: Will PNC Park Burn Down When Neil Walker Eventually Leaves?

    7 hours ago

    Last week we started a Q&A article that will run every Friday. Right after the first article went up, we got a lot more questions. Normally I’ll ...

    Read More
  • Tyler Glasnow

    The Change That Will Help Tyler Glasnow Reach His Upside

    1 day ago

    The 2011 draft made headlines for the Pittsburgh Pirates for two main reasons. They selected Gerrit Cole first overall, and gave him a record-setting bonus of $8 ...

    Read More
  • Jameson Taillon

    The Next Steps in Jameson Taillon’s Tommy John Rehab Process

    2 days ago

    Jameson Taillon threw a bullpen session yesterday, which I outlined in the daily recap. Taillon is still in “rehab mode” as Clint Hurdle put it, which means ...

    Read More
  • Sean Rodriguez

    The Keys to Sean Rodriguez Being a Productive Hitter

    3 days ago

    The Pittsburgh Pirates added Sean Rodriguez at a high cost this off-season. They traded promising pitching prospect Buddy Borden to the Rays, getting Rodriguez in return after ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles