Market shrinking rapidly for Angels K-Rod
Francisco Rodriguez set a major league record last season with 62 saves. He's 26, a perfect age for free agency. But the riches might not be there for him.
On Monday, the Padres dumped all-time save leader Trevor Hoffman into the free-agent market. Two days later, Arte Moreno said the time had come for the Angeles to "turn the page" on negotiations with their star closer.
On Thursday, the Chicago Cubs traded for former Florida Marlins closer Kevin Gregg as a backup for new closer Carlos Marmol. Then Cubs General Manager Jim Hendry said closer Kerry Wood should look elsewhere for a long-term contract.
To top it off, Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti on Thursday said that he was not looking for a closer.
The flurry of activity should benefit the New York Mets, the only team that is expected to spend big bucks on a closer. The Mets have their choice of Rodriguez, Hoffman, Wood and Brian Fuentes, plus a lesser group of Chad Cordero, Brandon Lyon, Jason Isringhausen ... even Eric Gagne.
-- Bill Shaikin
Photo: Angels relief pitcher Francisco Rodriguez is shown during a game in early October. Credit: Mark Avery / Associated Press