As Matthew noted yesterday, while Aaron Heilman has started before, he’s probably a better bet to pitch out of the pen. Seems that the Dbacks’ GM Josh Byrnes agrees, as he said last night that Heilman “definitely strengthens our bullpen.”
Remember back when Heilman’s agent made a big fuss over this, saying “The object is to get out of the bullpen. The most success he’s ever
had as a pitcher has been as a starting pitcher. He was drafted by the
Mets as a starting pitcher”?
Yeah, that was objectively wrong — Heilman’s ERA as a starter is 5.93 and 3.63 as a reliever — but even the best of us have a hard time admitting that we’re not as good at what we want to do in life as opposed to what we like to do. So keep an eye on the Dbacks camp come February and wait for the complaining to start.
The Reds announced on Wednesday that the club and pitcher Raisel Iglesias agreed to a three-year contract. Iglesias had been on a seven-year, $27 million contract signed in June 2014 and had two years with $10 million remaining. According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, the new contract is worth $24.125 million, so it’s a hefty pay raise for Iglesias.
Iglesias, who turns 29 years old in January, has gotten better every season pitching out of the Reds’ bullpen. In 2018, he posted a 2.38 ERA with 30 saves and an 80/25 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. Over his four-year career, the right-hander has 64 saves with a 2.97 ERA and a 359/106 K/BB ratio in 321 2/3 innings.
Iglesias gets little fanfare pitching for the Reds, fifth-place finishers in each of his four years, but he is certainly among baseball’s better relievers. Signing him to a new three-year deal gives them some certainty at the back of the bullpen in the near future.
There was a bit of confusion regarding his previous contract, which allowed him to opt out and file for arbitration if eligible. Iglesias has three years and 154 days of service time, so his new contract essentially covers his arbitration-eligible years.