Discussion

Fuentes worth owning more than Rodney

Updated: June 9, 2010, 11:28 AM ET
By Eric Karabell

Los Angeles Angels closer Brian Fuentes sports a 5.93 ERA and has allowed five home runs this season, numbers that Fernando Rodney owners point to as evidence a ninth-inning change should be made. Angels manager Mike Scioscia hears the calls, especially after Fuentes served up a Willie Bloomquist home run late last week, slicing a three-run lead to one. Fuentes still earned the save, but ... Willie Bloomquist? Really?

"Tito [Fuentes] would be the first one to say he's missing his spots right now," Scioscia told the Los Angeles Daily News on Friday. "But if we take him from the ninth [inning] to the eighth, it doesn't help -- you can lose a game in the eighth inning just as easily as in the ninth."

Well, that's heartening, Angels and fantasy fans. The truth is that the Angels need to get Fuentes corrected, but also that Rodney wasn't really any better than Fuentes in 2009, when these guys combined for 85 saves. Rodney's current numbers are misleading, making a pending change no more logical than leaving the situation alone. Fuentes has the better WHIP and strikeout rate. Rodney's 2.82 ERA is unlikely to stay there since he's walked more than he's struck out (17 to 15). Fuentes' main problem has been home run rate. One would think he'll correct it to some degree, or become more fortunate. The fact is both pitchers are flawed.

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