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9/27/1978 (38 y, 4 m, 29 d)
1999 June Amateur Draft - Round: 3, Pick: 15, Overall: 99, Team: Chicago White Sox
$1M / 1 Years (2013)
Rauch was assigned to minor league camp by the Royals on Monday, Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports. (3/24/2014)
Bullpen Report: June 4th, 2012
Benjamin Pasinkoff (RotoGraphs)
The Best Bar in Baseball
Eno Sarris (NotGraphs)
A New Mets Closer?
Mike Podhorzer (RotoGraphs)
Fastball Speed Bounce Back Candidates
Jeff Zimmerman (RotoGraphs)
Howard Bender's 10 Bold Predictions for 2012
Howard Bender (RotoGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
Rauch was a decent relief pitcher for the Twins during the 2010 season. In 76 games, his ERA is 2.82 with a record of 8-2 and 21 saves. The saves were accumulated when Joe Nathan was lost for the year and someone needed to become the closer. Don't expect these values to hold up and his ERA could easily balloon by a point or more. He looks quite average (~7.5 K/9 and ~2.5 BB/9), and these numbers may get worse for the 32-year-old. His fastball velocity has dropped each of the past two seasons (2008: 92.0 mph, 2009: 91.3 mph, 2010: 90.0 mph). Any value he has will be if he lands a closer (unlikely) or setup (somewhat likely) role on his new club, the Toronto Blue Jays. Expect him to be drafted in deep-mixed and AL-only leagues. (Jeff Zimmerman)
The Quick Opinion:
Rauch had a good couple years with Minnesota, but don't expect that success to continue in the AL East with the Jays.
For a big man, one of the biggest ever in baseball history, Jon Rauch doesn’t throw very hard, and the reliever regressed after a 2010 that saw him register some of the better numbers of his career. Moving from Toronto’s Rogers Centre to the New York Mets’ Citi Field will certainly help the fly ball pitcher. But for Rauch to have fantasy value as he did in 2010, when he was closing for the Twins, he’ll have to keep the ball in the ballpark -- something he struggled to do last year. While Rauch has collected over 50 saves over the past four years, he isn’t an ideal closing candidate, as he doesn’t strike out enough batters and gives up far too many home runs. He is your classic middle reliever, with little fantasy value, and look for him to be the go-to guy in the seventh inning for the Mets. (Navin Vaswani)
The Quick Opinion:
Rauch will be one of two set-up men for Frank Francisco in Queens, New York, and has limited fantasy value as a middle reliever who should strike out more batters based on his intimidation factor (and height) alone.
It's common to think of taller pitchers as having greater velocity but for every Justin Verlander or Randy Johnson there is a Chris Young, or in this case, a Jon Rauch. Rauch doesn't throw particularly hard (90.7 mph in 2012) or miss many bats (6.55 strikeouts per nine; 8.5 swinging strike rate in 2012) but he does throw strikes (1.87 walks per nine in 2012). Add it all up and Rauch might be the definition of an average major league reliever -- 4.01 career FIP and 4.4 wins above replacement over 10 years and 578.1 innings pitched. This would likely explain why Rauch is still a free agent (as of February 1st) and would also explain why he probably won't remain a free agent by Opening Day. Another factor in Rauch's favor is that he is a proven closer. While that might sound silly to us, an average pitcher with closing experience is potentially very attractive to managers. Once he signs, expect Rauch to pitch to his normal, decent ways and if and when an opportunity to pick up saves arises, look for him to be in the mix, wherever he is. (
The Quick Opinion:
Jon Rauch is one of the tallest players in baseball at 6'11''. Someone has to sign him, right?
Jon Rauch once again led the league in neck tattoos and menacing stares in 2013 but he didn’t manage to do much else, pitching 16.2 innings with a 7.56 ERA in Miami before getting designated for assignment. He then signed with Baltimore, threw 9.1 innings at Triple-A and opted out of his minor league deal. At 6-foot-11 and with a high release point, Rauch basically has no chance of avoiding home runs over the long run, and now that he’s struggled even when the ball isn’t leaving the park, it’s tough to make a case for signing him. There have been almost no rumors involving the 35-year-old’s name, so his career could be coming to a close after 11 seasons, eight teams and 595 innings. Nobody can take away that 21-save 2010, though. (
The Quick Opinion:
Neck tattoos and crazy stares, that's what Jon Rauch does. Unfortunately, we didn't list "getting batters out" there.
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Updated: Saturday, February 25, 2017 3:34 AM ET
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