Bruce Rondon
Bruce Rondon
27-Year-Old PitcherRP
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2018 Fantasy Outlook
Expectations for Rondon peaked at "future closer" during his 10-year tenure in the Tigers' organization. A maddening lack of consistency, and issues with his effort, which led the Tigers to send him home for a stretch during the 2016 season, kept him from fulfilling his potential. He still throws hard, averaging 96.8 mph on his fastball last season, and he mixed that pitch with a mid-80s slider, along with the occasional changeup. The Tigers declined to tender Rondon a contract in December, making him a free agent. Just one year removed from a career-low 3.0 BB/9, he walked batters at an alarming 5.7 BB/9 clip last season, but he accompanied that glaring flaw with a career-high 12.6 K/9. As teams continue to adjust their roster construction and place a greater premium on quality relief arms, Rondon might be viewed as a low-cost, low-risk gamble capable of becoming a significant source of value with a change of scenery. Read Past Outlooks
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$Signed a minor-league contract with the White Sox in February of 2018. Released by the White Sox in July of 2018.
Elects free agency
PFree Agent  
July 15, 2018
Rondon declined an outright assignment to Triple-A Charlotte and became a free agent Sunday, James Fegan of The Athletic Chicago reports.
ANALYSIS
Rondon was designated for assignment earlier this week and will take his chances in free agency rather than remaining with the White Sox organization. The 27-year-old will likely have to settle for a minor-league contract after posting a bloated 8.49 ERA and 2.16 WHIP across 35 appearances in the majors this season.
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Pitching Stats
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Minor League Game Log
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-9%
BAA vs RHP
2018
 
 
-17%
BAA vs RHP
2017
 
 
-46%
BAA vs RHP
2016
 
 
-23%
BAA vs LHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .271 170 43 23 39 8 1 2
Since 2016vs Right .246 204 64 26 42 9 1 5
2018vs Left .333 54 12 9 15 6 0 1
2018vs Right .278 100 28 18 22 5 1 0
2017vs Left .433 38 7 7 13 2 1 1
2017vs Right .235 38 15 3 8 2 0 0
2016vs Left .159 78 24 7 11 0 0 0
2016vs Right .207 66 21 5 12 2 0 5
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-10%
ERA on Road
2018
 
 
-27%
ERA at Home
2017
 
 
-71%
ERA on Road
2016
 
 
-12%
ERA at Home
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2016Home 6.87 1.58 37.0 4 4 0 11.4 6.4 0.7
Since 2016Away 6.18 1.60 43.2 4 4 2 12.2 4.5 0.8
2018Home 6.94 1.89 11.2 2 1 0 14.7 10.0 0.0
2018Away 9.50 2.33 18.0 0 2 1 10.5 7.0 0.5
2017Home 18.00 2.57 7.0 0 3 0 10.3 9.0 1.3
2017Away 5.19 1.50 8.2 1 0 1 14.5 3.1 0.0
2016Home 2.79 1.03 19.1 2 0 0 9.8 3.3 0.9
2016Away 3.18 0.88 17.0 3 2 0 12.7 2.6 1.6
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Stat Review
How does Bruce Rondon compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
K/BB
1.48
 
K/9
12.1
 
BB/9
8.2
 
HR/9
0.3
 
Fastball
96.4 mph
 
ERA
8.49
 
WHIP
2.16
 
BABIP
.452
 
GB/FB
1.62
 
Strand %
57.1%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
Rondon pitched quite effectively in relief for the Tigers in 2016, especially late in the second half, posting a 1.69 ERA over the final two-plus months. With a huge 275-pound frame and a fastball occasionally touching triple digits, Rondon has consistently struck out batters throughout his career (10.4 K/9), although he's struggled to throw strikes (career 3.9 BB/9). He's also dealt with several injuries. Rondon's improved command in 2016 comes amidst an increased reliance on his slider, throwing it 37 percent of the time. Opponents recorded just six hits off the pitch in 2016, and it accounted for 67 percent of his strikeouts. With prototypical closer stuff, Rondon will be itching for a shot at closing in 2017. Unfortunately, the Tigers picked up the option for veteran Francisco Rodriguez, who saved 44 games for them last year. If K-Rod has to miss time or is traded, however, Rondon has the stuff to assume the job.
Rondon will return in a setup role for Detroit after an inconsistent season. Rondon lives and dies with his fastball, which can touch triple digits with ease. His 12.6 K/9 was brilliant in 2015 and he could be in the mix for saves in Detroit if Francisco Rodriguez falters. However, Rondon blew almost as many saves (4) as he earned (5) in 2014, perhaps because that delicious fastball seemed far more hittable than ever before. He gave up a hit each inning (31) and his 36:19 K:BB rate helped balloon his WHIP to 1.61. The potential remains. But potential doesn't win in fantasy.
Shortly after he joined the Tigers' organization, Rondon started receiving comparisons to Joel Zumaya, another young flame-throwing relief pitcher who came up through the system a few years earlier before injuries derailed his progress. Unfortunately, after Rondon underwent Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2014 campaign, those comparisons seem even more apropos. Despite the significance of Rondon’s injury, the Tigers expect the right-handed reliever to be ready by spring training, just 11 months after going under the knife. While that timeline seems optimistic, Rondon should return to action at some point in 2015. If he can still approach triple digits with his fastball while also throwing a solid slider, Rondon will be in the late-inning mix setting up closer Joe Nathan, but the 24-year-old has a lot to prove before reclaiming the “closer-of-the-future” tag he held prior to his injury.
Rondon’s debut season at the major league level was a disappointment. As one of the Tigers' top prospects, Rondon was expected to immediately take a large role in the bullpen, possibly even handling closing duties. Inconsistencies with his control during spring training led to Rondon starting his 2013 campaign in the minors, and he eventually split his time evenly between Triple-A Toledo and Detroit. He was dominant in his 30 appearances with the Mud Hens, posting a 1.52 ERA while racking up 40 strikeouts and 14 saves in 29.2 innings. His stint with the Tigers was bumpier, but Rondon was able to show improvement throughout the season and finish with a 3.45 ERA and a 30:11 K:BB ratio in his first 28.2 innings as a major league pitcher. Despite the ups and downs in his debut, the Tigers remain high on Rondon. He sports a triple-digit fastball and a decent slider that improved as the season wore on. The 22-year-old righty was sidelined by an elbow injury for the final month of the season. He was officially diagnosed with a flexor tendon strain after a visit with Dr. James Andrews in October, and the Tigers expect Rondon to make a full recovery and be ready for spring training. While he’s still considered a closing option of the future for the Tigers, he will have to settle for a setup role with the team's addition of Joe Nathan in December.
Rondon is the latest Tigers' prospect to be dubbed the team's closer of the future. The difference with Rondon is that future could be now. The 22-year-old righty is coming off a dominant season in the minors, posting an 1.53 ERA and 1.09 WHIP with 66 strikeouts in 53 innings spread across High-A, Double-A and Triple-A. He worked as a closer in all three of his stops, picking up 29 saves in 52 appearances. His stuff screams closer at the major league level, too, as Rondon sports a heavy fastball that can reach triple digits and a solid breaking ball. The main obstacle for Rondon is the occasional bout of wildness -- he has a 5.1 BB/9 throughout his minor league career. The Tigers' brass have already stated that Rondon will be in the mix to close in 2013, and he just might be the favorite if the team passes on bringing in a proven veteran for the gig.
More Fantasy News
Outrighted to Triple-A
PChicago White Sox  
July 13, 2018
Rondon was outrighted to Triple-A Charlotte on Friday, James Fegan of The Athletic Chicago reports.
ANALYSIS
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Designated for assignment
PChicago White Sox  
July 11, 2018
Rondon was designated for assignment by the White Sox on Wednesday.
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Heading down to minors?
PChicago White Sox  
July 11, 2018
Rondon was seen packing his belongings and receiving pats on the back from teammates following Tuesday's 14-2 loss to the Cardinals, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun Times reports.
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Losing potential trade value
PChicago White Sox  
July 8, 2018
Rondon allowed one run on two hits and a walk while striking out one over one inning in Saturday's 12-6 loss to the Astros.
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Works seventh inning Saturday
PChicago White Sox  
May 20, 2018
Rondon worked around a hit to pitch a scoreless seventh inning in Saturday's 5-3 win over the Rangers.
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