Tag: Chad Cordero

Blue Jays Buy Low On Former Closer Chad Cordero

For the second consecutive week the Blue Jays signed a former closer with the intent of rebuilding their bullpen for 2011. The newest addition to the bullpen corps is Chad Cordero who was last seen throwing a whole nine and two-thirds innings out of the Mariners’ bullpen last season. Previous to that he, more or less, completely missed all of 2008 and 2009 after an injury to his right shoulder. The deal is a minor league contract with an invite to spring training, making it about as low-risk a move as your going to find.

Cordero is best know for his three year run as the closer for the Washington Nationals. From 2005 to 2007 he made at least 68 appearances and worked no less than 73 innings each year while compiling 113 saves in 133 chances, an 85 percent success rate. If you throw in his 2004, in which he pitched 82 innings but had only 14 saves in 18 chances, he had a cumulative ERA of 2.83 in over 300 innings of work. His FIP in that time was a much less impressive 4.05.

Though Cordero was consistently healthy and effective in terms of his ERA and save percentage for those four years his peripheral numbers fluctuated greatly. None more so than his walk rate which went from bad(4.68 BB/9 IN in 2004) to outstanding(2.06 in ’05, 2.70 in ’06) to just average(3.48 in ’07) in the span of four seasons. His strikeout rates fluctuated as well, peaking at 9.04 K/9 IN in 2004, but stayed above average each season. His homer rates were around average, with one glaring exception in 2006.

Cordero out pitched his FIP by almost a full run in each of his four full seasons which leaves a reasonable expectation he can repeat that in the future. He was able to do so in both 2005 and 2006 by suppressing line drives better than all but two NL relievers. Cordero kept his homer rates around average despite being a heavy flyball pitcher. That too looks to be repeatable skill, and not luck, from 2004 to 2007 his percentage of flyballs that turned into homers was just 9.1 percent, league average is generally around 12-14 percent.

All that is good and fine but the reality is that on Opening Day 2011 that run of performance will be almost four years into the past. Cordero will still be just 29 when the season opens however, making it very possible he can still be effective if healthy. He was healthy enough to throw 45 1/3 innings over 43 appearances between Triple-A and the show in 2010. His Triple-A numbers were impressive putting up a 2.66 FIP between the Mets and Mariners Triple-A teams and striking out 36 batters in 35 2/3 innings while walking only 9.

The arm injury is a concern and is the reason for Cordero’s absence from the majors for the last three seasons. But on the bright side, Cordero wasn’t a fireball pitcher who had success by throwing high 90s heat past opposing batters. His fastball averaged right around 89 MPH during his peak seasons and was paired almost exclusively with a 79-80 MPH slider and an occasional 83 MPH change-up.

Cordero has also never heavily relied on being a swing and miss pitcher, he had two seasons above and two seasons below average swinging strike percentages. That would partially explain his fluctuating strikeout rates as most pitchers who consistently strikeout more than a batter an inning also have high swing and miss rates. That implies his success had more to do with deception in his delivery and a batters inability to differentiate his fastball from his slider than anything else. This would be great for the Jays and Cordero since he’ll be facing plenty of new faces in a new league. 

The Jays would be delighted if Cordero could put together 50-60 innings of anything resembling his peak performance out of the Jays ‘pen next season. If healthy, he’ll almost certainly be given the opportunity. And unlike the recently acquired Octavio Dotel, all of 37 years young, the Jays might actually keep Cordero around for two or three seasons if he’s able to pitch effectively and stay healthy. A harmless move for the Jays if it fails but with his history Cordero is one of the more interesting guys to pay attention to next season when summoned from the ‘pen.  

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New York Mets Sign Chad Cordero

The Mets need help, in multiple aspects. Today, they made a move that improves one part of their roster, possibly.

Chad Cordero was signed by the Mets today, and will be sent to the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, who had their contract as affiliate of the Mets extended today through 2012, for now.

Cordero is most known for closing out games for the Washington Nationals from 2005-07. He also closed for the Montreal Expos in ’03 and ’04 before the franchise moved to Washington.

He pitched with the Seattle Mariners earlier this year, pitching in nine games and going 0-1 with a 6.52 ERA. Cordero was signed to a minor league deal.


Flushing Baseball Daily reporter, Tyler Moore. Follow Tyler on Twitter, where he’ll discuss Mets, and also his posts. If you wish to email him, send an email to Tyler with the subject of Flushing Baseball Daily Mail. Thanks for reading!

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Chad Cordero is a Good Fit for San Francisco Giants Bullpen

It was reported today that the Mariners signed well-worn right-handed pitcher Jamey Wright and assigned him to the team. 

In order to clear roster space, the M’s optioned right-handed pitcher Chad Cordero to Triple-A Tacoma, but Cordero elected to become a free agent rather than accept the minor league assignment.

It’s not a move I understand at all. 

With Wright, 35, you know exactly what you are getting, and it isn’t very good.

Wright was released by the Indians after 18 appearances, in which he posted a 5.48 ERA with terrible ratios. 

Wright has a career ERA of 5.03 over 16 Major League seasons.

After being released by the Indians, he made 10 relief appearances for the Oakland Athletics’ Triple-A team in Sacramento, and he didn’t pitch well there either (9.00 ERA with 23 hits, nine walks, and 16 Ks in 14 IP). 

Wright opted out of his minor league contract to sign with the Mariners.

Meanwhile, 28-year-old Chad Cordero is working his way back from the major arm injury he had in 2008, when he had surgery to repair a torn labrum. 

Labrum tears are now generally harder to come back from than blown elbow tendons because shoulder injuries more often result in reduced velocity after surgery and rehabilitation.

Cordero hadn’t pitched well for the M’s this year (6.52 ERA in 9.2 IP with 10 hits and five walks allowed and six Ks), but that’s no worse than what Wright did in Cleveland this year.

Cordero also made 17 appearances at Triple-A Tacoma this year, where he posted an unimpressive 4.12 ERA but had fine peripheral numbers (19.2 IP, 19 hits, and four walks allowed, and 22 Ks).

That’s far better than Wright’s work at Triple-A Sacramento.

Unlike Wright, Cordero was once a great pitcher, and Cordero is still young enough to make a comeback. 

Why a going-nowhere club like the 2010 Mariners would essentially elect to trade in a 28-year-old pitcher with great upside for a 35-year-old pitcher who was never very good to begin with, I simply don’t understand.

Meanwhile, the San Francisco Giants should give serious consideration to making Cordero an offer—particularly if he is willing to pitch two weeks at Triple-A Fresno first so he can show he’s still got something. 

The Giants could use another right-handed middle reliever, given the command problems many of their middle relievers have had.

While it’s likely that at least one Major League team will offer Cordero a Major League job without a Triple-A audition first, the Giants can offer Cordero the chance to play on a contender by the end of July.

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Bring Chad Cordero Back to the Washington Nationals!

One-time Nationals All-Star closer Chad Cordero has refused a minor league assignment with the Seattle Mariners and opted for free agency.

Cordero is working back from a torn labrum which can be almost entirely blamed on the Nationals training staff, who allowed him to pitch through shoulder tendinitis, then a torn lat, which finally led to the torn labrum—once considered a death sentence for pitchers.

Fans may also remember how former General Manager Jim Bowden unceremoniously announced live on sports talk radio that he would non-tender Cordero—before informing Cordero or his agent.

He is now 28 years old (that’s less than a year older than J.D. Martin). He appeared in nine games for the Mariners and allowed seven earned runs in 9.2 innings pitched.

That’s not great, but he struck out six, showing that he could still compete. Earlier this season at Triple-A Tacoma, he struck out 22 in 19.2 innings and had a 4.12 ERA.

His velocity is down, but he never had much to begin with. This season, his average fastball was right about 88 mph during his time in Seattle; compared to the absurdly slow 83 mph we saw back in 2008 when he last threw for the Nationals.

It seems clear that Cordero will pitch on any team that gives him a shot in the majors.

Why shouldn’t it be Washington?

As long as he doesn’t totally implode, he’ll be a fan favorite.

Pretty soon Tyler Clippard’s arm will fall off.  Would you really rather watch Joel Peralta?

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