In case you missed the news, baseball is back! As of 6 p.m. on March 10, the agreement between MLB and MLBPA had been ratified, and free agency was on.
Nearly 24 hours later, there was finally some movement. Alas, it was Carlos Rodón signing a two-year deal with the San Fransisco Giants.
Rodón will earn $44 million, which includes an opt-out after the first season. Yep, pretty much the qualifying offer that the White Sox passed on last year.
Let's break down some of the memorable moments, both good and bad.
Rodón was drafted in the first round, third overall by the White Sox in the 2014 draft. In 2013, White Sox fans were hoping to tank the season so Rodón could be drafted at #1.
Rodón was called up to the major league on April 20, 2015, and would make his White Sox debut the next day. He pitched just more than two innings, gave up two runs, walked three batters, and struck out Lonnie Chisenhall for his first major league strikeout.
Before long, Rodón would begin his frequent stints on the injured list. In July 2016, he suffered a wrist sprain. In 2017, Rodón was only able to start 12 games. He started 2018 on the 60-day disabled list due to a shoulder injury.
On March 18, 2019, the White Sox announced Rodón would be the Opening Day starter, but just two months later, he would undergo Tommy John surgery and be out for the remainder of the season.
In the pandemic season of 2020, Rodón hit rock bottom, only appearing in four games, compiling an 0-2 record and 8.22 ERA, with six strikeouts in 7 2⁄3 innings pitched. By December 2, he was non-tendered by the White Sox. On Jan. 30, 2021, Rodón re-signed with the White Sox on a one-year, $3 million contract.
In an incredible bounce-back season, Rodón led the 2021 White Sox in wins with 13, pitched his first career no-hitter, and was named to his first All-Star Game.
The final out. A spectacular night on the mound for Carlos Rodón! pic.twitter.com/xkYMaLR9vP— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 15, 2021
He also posted a team-best 2.37 ERA, and had 185 strikeouts in 132 2⁄3 innings. The organization and fans had high hopes for his career after the ups and downs Rodón faced, but GM Rick Hahn refused to extend a qualifying offer to the southpaw after the season, all but assuring his exit from the South Side.
The fact that Rodón’s contract with San Francisco has that opt-out would seem to indicate he would have assessed the market and very likely taken the White Sox QO, betting on himself for a fully healthy 2022 and major bucks in free agency from there.
I can’t speak for everyone, but No. 55 will be missed on the South Side of Chicago. Thanks for the memories, Los!