Now Commenting On:

Arredondo making most of chance

Arredondo making most of chance

ANAHEIM -- If his purpose is to make an impression, Jose Arredondo is doing just fine, thank you.

Summoned from Triple-A Salt Lake to get some outs and relieve some stress on the bullpen, Arredondo, 24, has shown the right stuff to manager Mike Scioscia and closer Francisco Rodriguez -- after a less than auspicious beginning.

The third pitch and first strike of his Major League career was launched for a home run on Wednesday night by Nick Swisher of the White Sox.

"That wasn't too good," Arredondo said, grinning.

It quickly got better. He retired the side, striking out one hitter. Two nights later, asked to get one out, he struck out Orlando Cabrera, the Angels' former shortstop, with a split-fingered fastball.

"That felt much better," Arredondo said, having expressed his pleasure with a gesture calling to mind K-Rod.

The closer has been helpful to the young man from San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic, who began his professional career as a shortstop and reminds Rodriguez of himself in some ways.

Even Swisher's jolt brought back memories for K-Rod, who made his Major League debut in September 2002 and was a postseason legend a month later.

"I want to help him be confident," K-Rod said. "It's pretty much the same situation as when they brought me up. [Eric] Chavez was my first hitter, in Oakland, and he got a base hit.

"After that, I had a strikeout [run] of nine in a row. It ended when I walked Travis Hafner intentionally in Texas."

This type of reinforcement and wisdom, from K-Rod to the kid, can be immeasurably beneficial.

"He's got a great arm," K-Rod said of Arredondo, who was superb this spring and off to a great start in Salt Lake. "He has the ability to be a good setup man or closer. He's got a really good two-seam fastball, a slider and split. He can get people out with what he has."

Arredondo's two-seamer reaches 94 mph on the gun, similar in impact to Scot Shields' killer sinker.

"That kind of stuff plays well in anybody's bullpen," Scioscia said. "He still has a learning curve, but he's shown he can get people out."

When Dustin Moseley returns to claim his middle-relief role, Arredondo is expected to be back in Salt Lake, closing. Moseley will throw 75 pitches in a rehab assignment for Salt Lake in Sacramento on Sunday.

"When a guy pitches well, he makes a role for himself," Scioscia said. "If Arredondo keeps pitching well, not only is he making a spot for himself, but he gets an expanded role."

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español