Throughout the 2018/2019 offseason, Marlin Maniac will devote one article each for every player who appeared in the Miami Marlins system for the 2018 season. Every. Single. Player. This is Part 82 of 286. Stay tuned.
Eliezer Rodriguez is a 6’1′, 185 lb. left-handed pitcher from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Born on February 17th, 1999, Rodriguez signed with the Miami Marlins through free agency on November 4th, 2016.
Santo Domingo has long been a hotbed of future MLB players. 169 major leaguers have originated in the city, including Adrian Beltre, Albert Pujols, David Ortiz, and Manny Ramirez, as well as current Miami Marlins Jarlin Garcia and Jose Urena.
After signing, Rodriguez joined the GCL Marlins for some offseason training in December 2016, and stayed there until assigned to the DSL Marlins, in the rookie-level Dominican Summer League just prior to the 2017 campaign.
Rodriguez started 14 times for the DSL Marlins through his first season there, putting up a 1-2 record and a 3.57 ERA. He held opponents to a .212 batting average and a 1.19 WHIP, striking out 39 and walking 21 in 45 1/3 innings. In his first ever professional appearance, on June 3rd, he held the DSL Rays to no hits and a walk over four innings, striking out three in a 12-2 victory on DSL Opening Day. On July 25th, he struck out seven in four shutout frames, allowing two singles and a walk in an 8-1 victory over the same Rays. The 2017 DSL Marlins posted a 40-29 overall record, finishing out of the money in third place in the DSL Northwest Division.
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In 2018, Rodriguez appeared 10 times, starting in nine games. Opponents saw him better, apparently, hitting .245 off him. Rodriguez held them to a 1.45 WHIP and struck out 25 in 31 innings, issuing 19 walks. He went 0-1 with a 3.48 ERA. The 19 walks were a concern. Rodriguez didn’t log any walkless appearances through the campaign. The DSL Marlins finished a half-game better than in the past season, going 42-30 and finishing in second in the DSL Northwest, but still out of the postseason.
Players who originate in the DSL have a very small chance of future major league success, with less than five percent eventually making their way to the top level. Rodriguez could buck the trend if he finds a way to control his offerings a little better. He currently ranks 11th out of 12 left-handed starters in the Miami Marlins system.
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