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Saturday, February 01, 2014

Texas Rangers take a chance on Daniel Bard

Right-hander Daniel Bard, a dominant set-up reliever with Boston in 2010-11, signed a minor-league contract with the Texas Rangers on Friday.

Bard will not get on a mound until early in the season, general manager Jon Daniels said. Bard underwent thoracic outlet surgery in early January.

Bard’s career has been on a downward spiral since the Red Sox, with Bobby Valentine as manager, put him into the rotation in 2012. In the last two years with the Red Sox, Bard was 5-6 with a 6.27 ERA and more walks than strikeouts (45-39) in 60 1/3 innings.

Bard, a first-round pick in the 2006 draft, had similar control problems early in his career.

Bard, 28, spent the majority of last season in the minors and made only two appearances with the Red Sox. The Chicago Cubs added Bard on a waiver claim in September, but he did not appear in a game. The Cubs allowed Bard to become a free agent after not offering a contract for the coming season.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 01, 2014 at 12:35 PM | 13 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: daniel bard, minor league free agents, rangers

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   1. Enrico Pallazzo Posted: February 01, 2014 at 04:57 PM (#4649905)
What the hell happened to him? Did the SP experiment mess him up that much? I find that hard to believe. How's his velocity been?
   2. toratoratora Posted: February 01, 2014 at 05:26 PM (#4649911)
I had no idea Bard had been waived. Rough Red Sox end for what had been a terrific looking prospect.
Of course, in typical Sawx fashion, he'll likely turn things around in Texas and become a beast closer
   3. JJ1986 Posted: February 01, 2014 at 05:35 PM (#4649914)
Bard had an historically bad winter ball stint. I can't find the exact numbers, but he retired something like 1 of 15 batters he faced.
   4. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 01, 2014 at 06:15 PM (#4649925)
I saw his last appearance in the Boston organization at Short Season Lowell and it was god awful. He seems like a good guy who may be a bit sensitive so I'm rooting for him. To answer Enrico's second question his velocity that night in Lowell was 90-91.

As for whether moving into the rotation messed him up that badly...man that's the magic question. Like I said he seems sensitive and he was a guy who had already been a bust as a starter once (in the low minors) before being moved to the bullpen. There were some (including me) who were fearful that him washing out as a starter could irreparably damage him.

That said he actually looked OK as a starter for awhile. Other than a 7 walk game against Tampa on Patriot's Day (when Bobby V. stuck with him long past his sell by date, he walked the last three batters he faced) he was pitching like you'd expect a back of the rotation guy to pitch, OK with a high ERA. After about a month he started to struggle a bit then had a start in Toronto where he was a complete disaster, a bunch of walks, a couple of HBPs and he was out of there in the 2nd/3rd inning and that was pretty much it. He hasn't been able to throw strikes since.

I think/hope he can be fixed. His mechanics have always been a bit unreliable. One of the reasons he worked as a short reliever is that would allow him to work in short bursts.
   5. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: February 01, 2014 at 06:29 PM (#4649929)
Of course, in typical Sawx fashion,


...they'll go on to win 3 out of the next ten World Series.
   6. snowles Posted: February 01, 2014 at 09:03 PM (#4649965)
I thought Bard was having issues before he made the switch to starting. Wasn't he one of the big culprits in the epic collapse? I seem to remember as a Jays fan watching him come in and proceed to be all over the place that September, just like the flick of a lightswitch from dominant to awful.

Checking the gamelogs, he gave up 9R, 7ER in 2.1IP in the span of a week, 8 of them, with 2 blown saves to the Jays. Then a week later proceeded to poop the bed against the Orioles.
   7. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: February 02, 2014 at 05:13 AM (#4650025)
Bard had an historically bad winter ball stint. I can't find the exact numbers, but he retired something like 1 of 15 batters he faced.


In one third of an inning in winter ball, he has allowed 9 walks, with an ERA of 216.00

In the minors for Boston in 2013, he had 27 walks and 11 wild pitches in 15 innings.
   8. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: February 02, 2014 at 10:11 AM (#4650043)
I thought Bard was having issues before he made the switch to starting.


Eh, he had a bad month at the back end of a good year. It happens to a lot of guys. I don't think there's any way of knowing if he was actually screwed up or just made some bad pitches that September.
   9. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: February 02, 2014 at 10:23 AM (#4650047)
Wasn't he one of the big culprits in the epic collapse?


He made eleven appearances in September; was the losing pitcher in four and also blew the save in one other loss. He walked 24 on the season; nine of those came in four September games.

Was there no injury involved in Bard's collapse? I thought I remembered something, but maybe he just got put on the DL for sucking at some point?
   10. ptodd Posted: February 03, 2014 at 12:00 AM (#4650580)
Here is Gammons take

http://www.gammonsdaily.com/peter-gammons-daniel-bard-gets-fresh-start-after-surgery/

Seems he had symptoms back to Aug 2011
   11. toratoratora Posted: February 03, 2014 at 07:02 AM (#4650589)
From the Gammons FA:

"When he was back in the minors trying to right what was wrong last spring, one day he got a text from Mike Reinold, the shoulder expert who had overseen much of the Red Sox physical program. He suggested that there had been evidence that there may have been some deterioration in 2011 that could be related to Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. In other conversations, Reinold said that had been evidence of deterioration that affected the left shoulders and hence deliveries of Bard, Beckett and Jon Papelbon, but it was slight.

The correspondence was unusual, because Reinold had been replaced by the Red Sox and has been working with Eric Cressey, among others, but he never stopped caring about players with whom he had built a relationship."

Interesting,on more than one level.
Watch it turn out that he was hurt and the Sox missed it.
   12. SandyRiver Posted: February 03, 2014 at 08:34 AM (#4650601)
Eh, he had a bad month at the back end of a good year. It happens to a lot of guys. I don't think there's any way of knowing if he was actually screwed up or just made some bad pitches that September.


IIRC, his fastball didn't have a huge amount of movement. When he was hitting 99 on the gun, it was effective, but in late 2011 his FB was mid-low 90s and with more middle-of-plate meatballs. Whether he was hurt or just ired, I have no idea, but seeing the "90-91 at Lowell" post above suggests an injury at some part of the collapse.
   13. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 03, 2014 at 08:39 AM (#4650602)
Watch it turn out that he was hurt and the Sox missed it.


When a Major League pitcher goes from successful to crummy in a short time I think the default response should be to run him through a spectacular battery of tests. I think at a minimum 50% of those cases there is an injury at work.

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