May 26, 2024

The Texas Rangers have bolstered their bullpen by signing David Robertson, a seasoned reliever with a notable career, to a one-year contract worth approximately $11-12 million. The move addresses the team’s need for bullpen support, marking a departure from the past strategy of uncovering unexpected gems in the pitching staff.

Olympic silver medalist David Robertson revives his MLB career - World  Baseball Softball Confederation - wbsc.org

David Robertson, known for his lengthy tenure as a bullpen pitcher, began his career with the New York Yankees in 2008. This signing marks his ninth organization in what will be his 16th season. Robertson, with a career ERA of 2.90 and 175 saves, adds valuable postseason experience to a bullpen filled with pitchers who gained their first taste of the playoffs in 2023.

As a reliable bullpen arm, Robertson is expected to provide veteran leadership in the late innings under the management of Bruce Bochy. His extensive postseason experience includes appearances in two World Series with the Yankees in 2009 and the Phillies in 2022. Robertson’s wealth of knowledge makes him a potential mentor for younger pitchers on the roster, such as Josh Sborz, Jonathan Hernandez, Brock Burke, Grant Anderson, and other emerging talents.

Reviewing Robertson’s performance in 2023, he showcased consistency during his time with the New York Mets but faced challenges after being traded to the Miami Marlins mid-season. While his ERA spiked in August, he rebounded in September in a setup role, demonstrating his resilience. The high salary associated with the signing suggests the Rangers anticipate Robertson playing a pivotal role in high-leverage situations, drawing on his experience as a closer and setup reliever.

With a bullpen that now includes Kirby Yates, the Rangers, managed by Bruce Bochy, have increased their late-inning options. Assuming health for key pitchers like Jose Leclerc, Josh Sborz, David Robertson, and Kirby Yates, Bochy is poised to mix and match in the late innings, leveraging their distinct pitching styles. The prediction is that Leclerc will assume the primary closer role, Robertson in the eighth, Sborz in the seventh, and Yates serving as a versatile option for middle or late-inning scenarios.

The Rangers’ bullpen is positioned to be stronger than it was at the end of the regular season, with Robertson’s professionalism expected to contribute positively to whichever role he is assigned. The team’s focus now shifts to re-signing Jordan Montgomery, a move that both sides desire but appears to lack urgency at the moment.

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