Cincinnati Reds: Remember former pitcher Arthur Rhodes?

ST. LOUIS - SEPTEMBER 3: Reliever Arthur Rhodes #56 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS - SEPTEMBER 3: Reliever Arthur Rhodes #56 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Arthur Rhodes played just two seasons with the Cincinnati Reds, but racked up a 2.41 ERA in 135 games. Let’s take a look back at the left-handed reliever.

We all know about the legendary Cincinnati Reds players who’ve played over the years. The Hall of Famers like Johnny Bench, Barry Larkin, and Joe Morgan. The record-setters like Pete Rose, and the freak athletes like Eric Davis. But what about some of the less prominent players who’ve had a big impact. Let’s take a look back at the Reds career of Arthur Rhodes.

Rhodes spent two seasons (2009-2010) in Cincinnati’s bullpen, his age 39, and age 40 campaigns. Rhodes debuted for the Orioles in 1991 when he was just 21-years old and spent nine seasons in Baltimore. When you look at the league today, a reliever spending nine seasons with one ball club is a rare occurrence.

After bouncing around the league from 2004-2008, Rhodes signed a two-year/$4M deal with the Reds going into the 2009 season. During the same offseason, the Reds signed Jerry Hairston, Lance Nix, and Johnny Gomes, along with a trade for Ramon Hernandez from the Orioles (the infamous Justin Turner trade).

The Reds saw 2009 as a season where they could compete for a division title. After finishing 78-84, good enough for fourth-place in a very competitive and tight division. The front office also signed reliever David Weathers that offseason.

Rhodes threw 108.1 innings and posted a 2.41 ERA with 98 strikeouts over his two seasons with the ball club. Rhodes’ ERA of 2.29 in 2010 sits as the fourth-best season of his career. In a talented bullpen with Francisco Cordero and Nick Masset, Rhodes ranked second in ERA behind a young Aroldis Chapman who made his big league debut that season and held a 2.03 ERA.

Arthur Rhodes pitched in many big games for the Redlegs, including the NL Central clinching affair against the Houston Astros in 2010. He threw a perfect 1-2-3 inning in the 7th, giving the ball over to Nick Masset in the 8th inning.

However, there was reason to believe that Rhodes wasn’t having all this success by himself. The week Rhodes signed with the Reds in 2008, he lost his son Jordan to an undisclosed illness. Arthur mulled over retirement during that offseason but decided to push on in honor of his son.

Rhodes wasn’t very vocal about his son’s death, as he wasn’t someone who wanted the spotlight.  Early in the 2010 season, Rhodes tied the major league record for 33 appearances without allowing a run. Perhaps Rhodes had some help from above during his two seasons with the Reds. Rhodes signed a two-year contract with the Texas Rangers following the 2010 season.

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There is no doubt that Arthur Rhodes time with the Cincinnati Reds was integral in the team’s success. Even though he wasn’t the most popular player, and won’t be thought of as a Hall of Famer, he has earned the right to be remembered by Reds country.