Former All Star reliever Chad Cordero is attempting to make a comeback and has signed a minor league contract with the Los Angeles Angels, according to an announcement on his own Twitter page. The deal does not appear to include an invitation to Spring Training.
Cordero was originally a 1st Round pick in the 2003 Draft by the Montreal Expos and was the on the fast track to the Major Leagues, making his debut before the season concluded. He made 305 appearances over the next six seasons, posting a 20-14 record with 128 saves for the Expos and Washington Nationals franchise. He added a 2.78 ERA and 1.198 WHIP over 320.2 IP. By the end of the 2004 season Cordero had assumed the team’s closer’s role. He’d make the NL All Star squad in 2005 while on his way to a franchise-best 47 save season.
Cordero would undergo surgery to repair a torn labrum following the 2008 season and has seen his career derailed since. He last pitched in the Major Leagues with the Seattle Mariners in 2010.
Prior to the 2011 season Cordero had signed a minor league deal with the Toronto Blue Jays, would be released in May, and would end up pitching for the Independent League St. Paul Saints. Mid-June he somewhat surprisingly announced his retirement. Cordero’s family had dealt with a terrible tragedy that Spring, the sudden death of his infant daughter, and it’s believed that he needed some time to cope with the unfortunate events.
Late last Spring it first became known that Cordero, now 30, was interested in potentially pursuing a comeback. There was some initial early speculation that such an effort could take place with the Nationals, but the two sides never appeared to be close to any sort of deal last season. Cordero will need to prove himself in the minor leagues, but assuming he is able to return to his pre-surgery form the Angels may have just found one of the biggest steals of the minor league free agent market.