As first reported by Chris Cotillo of MassLive, the Boston Red Sox agreed to a minor-league deal with veteran reliever Hector Rondon on Tuesday.
Rondon, 33, is coming off a season with the Arizona Diamondbacks in which he posted the highest ERA of his career, 7.65 in 23 appearances. An eight-year veteran with 92 career saves, Rondon last notched a save on Sept. 29, 2018 as a member of the Houston Astros.
Originally entering the major leagues with the Chicago Cubs, Rondon posted a 3.22 ERA with 303 strikeouts in 296.1 innings over his first five seasons.
According to data at FanGraphs, Rondon’s velocity has dipped for two straight years. Though he still averaged 95.8 mph on his fastball in 2020, he peaked at 97.6 mph with the Astros in 2018. Arguably more concerning is that his walks per nine innings ballooned to 4.95 in 2020, after just 2.97 in 2019. The Red Sox will ostensibly work with him to fix those issues as he begins the 2021 season in the minors.