Last week it was announced that Dontrelle Willis had agreed to a deal with the Chicago Cubs that would allow him to participate in minor league camp. Now Nate Robertson, another former Detroit Tigers left hander, is looking for an invitation to major league camp.
Robertson hasn’t pitched in the major leagues since 2010 when he posted a 5.95 ERA across 100 innings with the Florida Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies. He’s pitched in the minor leagues the last two years with little success. In 130 combined innings with three different AAA organizations (and an Independent League), Robertson has managed a pretty terrible 6.92 ERA.
He doesn’t appear to have sights on anything big – hoping simply to be a lefty specialist – but any job may be hard to find for the 35 year old with a career 5.01 ERA. He does have fairly significant platoon splits – that much is true – but he doesn’t dominate against left handed hitters to the extent you’d want a LOOGY to dominate.
Fans in Detroit were tired of Robertson’s inability to get hitters out by the time he left the organization after the 2009 season, but he’ll always be a sort of special player to many. He was a significant cog in the Tigers’ rotation during their World Series run in 2006 – throwing over 200 innings and posting a 3.84 ERA – but he’s probably most beloved for bringing “Gum Time” to the masses that same year.