The Detroit Tigers have claimed right-handed pitcher Dereck Rodriguez off waivers from the San Francisco Giants and optioned him to the alternate training site at Fifth Third Field in Toledo, the team announced Monday.
Rodriguez, 28, is the son of former Tigers catcher and Hall of Farmer Ivan (Pudge) Rodriguez, who played 21 seasons and five with Detroit from 2004-2008.
He is expected to provide depth in Toledo to combat the season-ending forearm injuries sustained by right-handed pitching prospects Matt Manning and Alex Faedo.
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Dereck Rodriguez was designed for assignment by the Giants on Wednesday before the Tigers scooped him up from waivers.
He made his MLB debut in 2018 for the Giants after being selected in the 2011 draft (sixth round) out of high school by the Minnesota Twins.
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Rodriguez compiled a 6-4 record with a 2.81 ERA, 1.132 WHIP, 89 strikeouts and 36 walks over 118⅓ innings in his rookie season. He started 19 of his 21 games.
His production plummeted in 2019 with a 5.64 ERA in 28 games (16 starts) across 99 innings. And after allowing six runs in two games and four innings in 2020, the Giants optioned Rodriguez to their alternate training site Aug. 17 before designated him for assignment.
Although he has been added for minor-league depth in intrasquad games, his previous big-league experience gives him a chance, even if it’s slim, to toss impactful innings in the majors this season.
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In his five years with the Tigers, Ivan Rodriguez hit .298 with 62 home runs and 300 RBIs in 611 games. He played 13 seasons for the Texas Rangers, two for the Washington Nationals and one each for the New York Yankees, Houston Astros and Florida Marlins.
Evan Petzold is a sports reporting intern at the Detroit Free Press. Contact him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold. The Free Press has started a new digital subscription model. Here’s how you can gain access to our most exclusive Detroit Tigers content.