After missing an entire season due to Tommy John Surgery, Ryan Madson finds himself back where he was a year ago — looking to establish himself as a closer after a potential arrangement with the Phillies, the only team he’s ever pitched for, fell through. Last offseason, the now 32-year-old reliever inked a one-year deal worth $8.5 million to pitch for the Reds, but never made it to the regular season due to a balky right elbow.
It’s difficult to envision Madson receiving more than a one-year deal this offseason as well considering the obvious need to prove he can return to full effectiveness following the surgery. The right-hander’s K/9 rate has spiked significantly the past three seasons he’s worked (9.1, 10.9, 9.2 respectively) and in that time period he has established himself as a reliable option at the back-end of the bullpen.
Although Madson has just one full season as a closer under his belt, it appears he’s interested in returning to that role. The Phillies were looking to bring him back as a setup man, but an arrangement could not be made. Recently, the Angels have shot up on his list of suitors, and that isn’t surprising for a team that finished near the bottom with a 4.10 reliever FIP a season ago. Provided that Madson is able to pitch as he did before the surgery (a likely bet with the success rate of Tommy John), he should be more than capable of bolstering any team’s bullpen.