Detroit — As reported by national writer Jon Heyman and confirmed by The News, the Tigers on Thursday night were working to finalize a minor-league deal with former Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal.
In 2014 and 2015, Rosenthal was one of the most feared and respected relievers in baseball. He posted 93 saves in those two years. And in eight playoff series between 2012 and 2015, with a plus-100 mph fastball, he posted an 0.69 ERA with 42 strikeouts in 26 innings.
But he had Tommy John surgery in 2018 and has not been able to find his mechanics or his command since. He had a brief but disastrous run with the Nationals earlier this season — posting more walks and hit batters (18) than outs (17) in 6.1 innings over 12 games. His ERA was 22.74.
It wasn’t any better in 10 games at Double-A Harrisburg, either — seven walks, three hit batters, nine hits and six runs in 9.1 innings.
He was released on June 23 and the Nationals are still on the hook for the rest of his $7 million salary.
Rosenthal is 29 and the average velocity on his fastball is still 98 mph.