David Schoenfield, over at ESPN’s SweetSpot, agrees with us about the newest Red, Ryan Madson; it’s a great pickup for the Redlegs:
Cincinnati Reds general manager Walt Jocketty may be too old to do a backflip, but he may be attempting one right now. This is how you build a good team in a small market with a limited budget: Sign one of the better closers in the game for a one-year, $8.5 million contract, as Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Over the past five seasons, only eight relievers with at least 300 innings pitched have a lower ERA than Madson’s 2.89 mark. Over the past two seasons, he has a 2.45 ERA, a 126-15 strikeouts-unintentional walks ratio and has allowed just 96 hits in 113.2 innings. In his first season as a closer, he converted 32 of 34 save opportunities. Importantly for the Reds, considering the cozy dimensions of Great American Ballpark, Madson keeps the ball in the park, allowing just two home runs in 2011 and six over the past two seasons.
Go read the entire thing. It’s worth your time.
The more I think about this signing, the more I like it. Kudos, Walt Jocketty.