In what was a long awaited move by the Los Angeles Dodgers, left-handed reliever Paco Rodriguez was recalled from Triple-A on Friday and immediately was thrust back into his role that night.
Rodriguez became a casualty of having options earlier this season when he was sent down even though he had already established himself as a major league caliber reliever.
According to J.P. Hoornstra of the LA Daily News, the 23-year-old discussed some of the difficulties of being down in the minor leagues:
Everything’s easy up here,” Rodriguez said. “Everything that you need, you’ll have up in the big leagues. Down there you don’t have everything you need and you have to make adjustments trying to get your workouts in, trying to do the things you need to do to be successful.”
Rodriguez was not used to the minor leagues like some players are once they reach the big leagues. He was drafted in June 2012 and was pitching for the Dodgers by September. This would be Rodriguez’s first time in Triple-A and he called it a “learning experience.” In 29 appearances for the Albuquerque Isotopes, Rodriguez had a 4.56 ERA, although it was in the extremely hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.
The left-hander had to make adjustments away from the big leagues which he also discussed:
You have to find ways to do those things, keep the same mindset and make sure you work on not only baseball stuff but keeping your body in shape and doing the best you can with what you have. That goes to show you the difference-maker of people’s work habits.”
In his brief time with the Dodgers, Rodriguez struggled a bit with an ERA over six in 10 appearances. He managed to lower his ERA with an inning of scoreless relief on Friday night and should be fresh for the second half of the season.
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