Ryan Madson
Ryan Madson
38-Year-Old PitcherRP
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Madson has not had a full-time closer role since 2016 -- he has spent the past two seasons setting up for the likes of Blake Treinen, Sean Doolittle and Kenley Jansen. The right-hander had his worst stretch of baseball this past season with the Nationals, as he uncharacteristically struggled with both the long ball and stranding runners, which is never a good combination. The stranding runners issue was on full display in the World Series. You should be hoping for a second division team to pick up the 38-year-old reliever on a one-year deal so he can start as a closer and get flipped to a contender willing to give him another chance at late leverage in late July. The velocity is still there, and the changeup gives him a strikeout pitch. Last year's ugly numbers could result in you landing 20 saves cheaply for 2019. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a three-year, $22 million contract with the Athletics in December of 2015. Traded to the Nationals in July of 2017.
Unavailable to pitch Game 5
PLos Angeles Dodgers  
October 28, 2018
Madson won't be an option out of the bullpen for Game 5 of the World Series against Boston on Sunday, Pedro Moura of The Athletic reports.
Madson gave up a big home run in Game 4 in 0.2 innings, and he won't throw Sunday despite tossing just eight pitches. If the Dodgers manage to extend the series to Game 6, he figures to be available.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .244 339 81 23 75 9 1 9
Since 2016vs Right .242 381 89 22 84 16 0 7
2018vs Left .289 107 23 12 26 4 0 3
2018vs Right .276 124 31 4 32 5 0 4
2017vs Left .204 104 35 3 20 3 0 1
2017vs Right .171 115 32 6 18 5 0 1
2016vs Left .244 128 23 8 29 2 1 5
2016vs Right .270 142 26 12 34 6 0 2
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
ERA at Home
ERA at Home
ERA on Road
ERA at Home
Since 2016Home 2.99 1.15 93.1 8 6 19 7.7 2.3 0.5
Since 2016Away 4.23 1.17 82.0 5 10 17 9.8 2.3 1.2
2018Home 4.97 1.66 25.1 1 2 1 7.8 3.6 0.7
2018Away 5.93 1.17 27.1 1 3 3 10.5 2.0 1.6
2017Home 2.10 0.76 34.1 3 2 2 8.9 1.0 0.3
2017Away 1.46 0.85 24.2 2 2 0 12.0 1.8 0.4
2016Home 2.41 1.16 33.2 4 2 16 6.4 2.7 0.5
2016Away 4.94 1.42 31.0 2 5 14 7.3 2.9 1.5
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Stat Review
How does Ryan Madson 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.
95.8 mph
Strand %
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
By every measure, Madson had a better 2017 than he did 2016 when he saved 30 games for Oakland. His reward? 28 fewer saves and a traded to Washington at the deadline to remain behind Sean Doolittle in line for saves while also competing with a few other worthy names. Madson, at age 36, had his best season as a pro, even topping his 2010 season which put him on our radars as a power reliever for Philadelphia. He checks off every statistical box you want in a closer: strikeouts (10.2 K/9 last season), low walk rate (1.4 BB/9), low flyball rate (21.2 percent) and mostly split neutral. If you focus on the past three seasons, 2016 looks like the outlier despite the 30 saves. Perhaps Madson does not have the mental chops to close and is better suited for a setup role? Either way, these are skills to be rostered in case new skipper Davey Martinez throws a changeup with the closer job.
Madson saved 30 games in 2016, the second time he's reached that milestone in three years. He sustained his velocity, which has rebounded since 2010, while notching fewer than 3.0 BB/9 for his sixth straight season and continuing his sometimes decent, sometimes great ability to induce groundballs. That's just about where the positives end, though. After all, he blew seven save chances. Madson's strikeout rate was his lowest since 2006, and his ERA was soared to its highest mark since that same season. He also struggled to get ahead with first-pitch strikes. Perhaps he was fatigued two years removed from a three-year, injury-riddled absence. While his stuff probably will be good enough that he'll improve in the strikeout column, he comes into 2017 as one of the shakiest closers -- that is, if the Athletics don't trade him or demote him. Speculating on a successor likely will pay off more than buying Madson, even at his low market value.
Madson returned to the major leagues in 2015 for the first time in three full seasons after suffering from a severe UCL tear that required Tommy John surgery. The 35-year-old managed to be a significant part of the Royals bullpen throughout the entire season with no major setbacks. He appeared in 68 games where he threw 63.1 innings of relief. He ended the year with a 2.13 ERA and 0.96 WHIP, including a 1-2 record with three saves. The 2015 season was no doubt an impressive comeback, and it earned him a three-year pact with Oakland that will add $22 million to the Madson bank account.
Madson is attempting to return following a three-season absence to recover from a torn UCL. While many pitchers can rehab back to the big leagues within 12-to-18 months of suffering the injury, Madson's tear was different in that the ligament was completely removed from the bone. He signed a minor league deal with the Royals in January, but Madson faces an uphill battle to return to the big leagues in his age-34 season.
Unlike Ryan Ludwick's one-year deal with the Reds, Madson's one-year deal was a disaster after he tore an elbow ligament in spring training and needed Tommy John surgery, missing the entire season. He might have been one of the top three relievers on the market last year, but it's an open question what he'll be able to deliver following the surgery. Many pitchers have come back strong from the surgery, but other high-effort relievers have had to change how they pitch - Jonathan Broxton comes to mind as one example. Madson signed a one-year deal with the Angels in the offseason. He should have a solid role with a chance to become the team's closer if he can stay healthy and produce.
Madson opened last year with the Phillies front office publicly questioning whether he was capable of closing out games in the majors. By the end of the season, Madson was viewed as one of the more dominant closers in the game. His ratios are excellent and he sports one of the best change-ups in the game. The Phillies opted to go in another direction at closer by signing Jonathan Papelbon, leaving Madson to look for a new club. Madson signed late in the offseason with the Reds, getting just a one-year deal from them as the only team with a vacancy at the closer position. Expect continued dominance from Madson there. He's one of the safer options to draft as your closer.
Madson began last season as the Phillies' closer when Brad Lidge was forced to begin the year on the disabled list. Madson picked up five saves before breaking his toe when he foolishly kicked a chair after a poor outing. When he came back around the All-Star break, manager Charlie Manuel leaned heavily on Madson, who settled back into his eighth-inning setup gig. Madson is next in line for saves in Philly and he has the stuff to be successful in that role. Madson makes a good target at the end of drafts given Lidge's recent injury history, but he also has the potential to be an excellent keeper with Lidge likely headed for free agency after the 2011 season.
Madson managed to rack up 10 saves last season while filling in at closer for Brad Lidge when Lidge was on the disabled list and later when Lidge was removed from sole possession of the closer's job. Madson also managed to blow six saves and attributed most of his problems to learning to pitch in a new role along with some bad luck. Madson has the stuff to close games as evidenced by his solid strikeout rate and his good command. He'll return as Brad Lidge's setup man this season and could assume the closer's role if Lidge struggles again this season.
Madson concluded the 2008 season going 4-2 with a 3.05 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and 67 strikeouts in 82.2 innings of relief. His 2008 numbers were nearly identical to those that he posted in 2007, except with a heavier workload. Madson has molded himself into a very reliable middle reliever and will be utilized in exactly the same role in 2009. He’s worth looking at if your league counts holds as a statistic, although he should not be considered otherwise.
A shoulder strain ended Madson's 2007 season early, in his return from a trial run as a starter in 2006. Before that switch, he was a quality set-up man and the Phillies are hopeful that Madson will be able to make the transition back into his old role and solidify one of their inconsistent weakness from last season.
Madson worked as a swingman for Philly and was basically throwing batting practice for much of the season, especially at home, where he had a 7.07 ERA. His stuff is good enough to make him a fifth or sixth pitcher on a staff, but he doesn't have a knockout pitch or the consistency to move beyond that. A return to the bullpen could help his numbers.
Although a starter in the minors, Madson broke into the majors as a reliever. The role agreed with him, and by the end of the year, he was setting up Billy Wagner. He faded in September, posting an 8.31 ERA, but that's not surprising for a young pitcher who had worked the third most games in the league (78). He's likely to move into the rotation in 2006, where he has precious little major league experience.
Madson had a fine rookie year out of the Philadelphia bullpen, leading NL rookies with his nine wins. The tall right-hander had marched methodically through their farm system, not lighting up radar guns but staying healthy and compiling good strikeout/walk ratios. The Phillies would like to keep him in the bullpen, but may have their hand forced if they can't plug holes caused by free agent defections. Madson isn't ready to throw 200 innings, though.
Madson was the leading candidate to be the Phils' fifth starter before their offseason moves, despite struggling in his final month at Triple-A Scranton. In moving up to Scranton, he pretty much matched his 2002 numbers at Double-A Reading, where he was the Eastern League's Most Valuable Pitcher.
Madson, 22, was Class AA Reading's most effective starter with a 16-4 record and 3.20 ERA in 26 starts. The deeper numbers look good, too, with just 150 hits in 171.1 innings and a strong 132/53 K/BB ratio. He'll start the 2003 season at Class AAA Scranton with a potential call-up late.
More Fantasy News
To see save chances over weekend
PLos Angeles Dodgers  
September 7, 2018
Mason figures to be one of the top candidates for save opportunities this weekend against Colorado, Bill Plunkett of The Orange County Register reports.
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Acquired by Dodgers
PLos Angeles Dodgers  
August 31, 2018
Madson was traded from the Nationals to the Dodgers on Friday in exchange for Andrew Istler, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.
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Returns from injury
PWashington Nationals  
August 27, 2018
Madson (back) was reinstated from the 10-day disabled list Monday, Dan Kolko of MASN Sports reports.
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Throwing bullpen session Sunday
PWashington Nationals  
August 26, 2018
Madson (back) was throwing a bullpen session prior to Sunday's game against the Mets, Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post reports.
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Heads to Phoenix for therapy
PWashington Nationals  
August 19, 2018
Madson has resumed rehabbing in Phoenix and will receive electric therapy for his back, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports.
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