Dodgers Sign Right Hander David Aardsma, Extend Invite To Spring Training
By Scott Andes
The Dodgers have signed 33-year old reliever David Aardsma and invited him to Major League spring training as a non roster invitee. The right hander announced the signing himself via twitter on Sunday evening. You probably remember the Dodgers were interested in trading for Aardsma a few years ago when he was with Seattle but were never able to acquire him. Aardsma was born in Denver and graduated from Rice University in Texas.
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The Giants drafted him in the first round of the 2003 amateur draft. He has pitched with seven MLB clubs over the course of his eight year Major League career. He pitched in just eleven games with San Francisco before being traded to the Cubs in 2006.
From there he bounced around to the White Sox, pitched a season in Boston before landing in Seattle. Aardsma had his best years with Seattle from 2009-2010. During those two seasons he saved 38 and 31 games respectively for the Mariners. He appeared in 73 games in 2009 and 53 in 2008. He posted impressive ERAs of 2.52 in 2008, and 3.44 in 2009, while posting strikeout per nine rates of 10.1 and 8.9.
During 2009, Aardsma whiffed 80 against 34 walks, while posting hits per nine rates of 6.2 and 6.0 in those two seasons. He finished the 2010 season converting 19 of his final 20 save opportunities, and a 1.80 ERA over the final three months of the season. Unfortunately he would succumb to Tommy John surgery in 2011, causing him to miss the entire season.
Aardsma returned to the Majors in 2012, signing a contract with the Yankees. However he appeared in only one game for the Yankees and was released before the 2013 season. After a brief minor league assignment with the Marlins, Aardsma found himself back in New York, this time with the Mets.
Call to the Pen
He pitched in 43 games for the Mets in 2013, posting a 2-2 record, with a 4.31 ERA and an 8.2 strikeout per nine rate. Aardsma did not pitch at all in the majors in 2014, but was with the Cardinal’s organization pitching for their triple-A affiliate Memphis Redbirds. He posted a 4-0 record with a 1.29 ERA in 33 games at Memphis.
Overall Aardsma has a 15-17 record with a 4.32 ERA and 69 career saves in 298 games. The right hander has whiffed 305 batters, and posted a career 9.0 strikeout per nine rate. Although he has had some control problems in the past, as he’s posted a 5.0 walk per nine rate in a little over 306 career frames.
According to Ken Rosenthal, Aardsma has improved his mechanics, and increased his velocity back into the low 90’s. You can also find him on twitter at https://twitter.com/TheDA53.