Free agent classification: Type B.
Basic stats: 3-1, 21 saves, 3.12 ERA (Full stats here.)
2010 salary: $2.9 million
The Outsider's verdict: No
|Jon Rauch in his Twins|
tenure: 8-2 with 21 saves
and a 2.82 ERA.
If this were, say 10 years ago, it's very likely that somebody would be sufficiently impressed by the 21 in his saves column to make a big offer this winter. Oh boy, a proven closer! But today, most general managers recognize the fallacy in using a "decisions" stat to evaluate pitching talent.
Rauch has value as a set-up man, as bullpen depth. That is likely to be how the market treats him as a free agent. There's too much risk here that arbitration will value him as a "proven closer." The Twins will, and should, forego the reward of the draft pick and duck the risk that he'll accept arbitration.