The reigning French champion Rouen Huskies, which started with four wins in four games into the 2013 season in the French Division I, has signed the 31-year-old Venezuelan right-hander Jose Rodriguez. He signed with the Atlanta Braves in 1998, made his professional debut one year later and moved up through the minor league system with the Braves and later the New York Mets, Tampa Bay Devil Rays and Houston Astros. He reached Triple-A, but never received the call to the big leagues.
After his release from affiliated ball in 2007 he joined the independent league circuit in 2011 and also pitched for Venezuela in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, in the Venezuelan Winter League and in Colombia. Now he is coming to France and becomes the third Venezuelan on the Rouen roster besides manager Keino Perez and infielder Luis Aponte. Rodriguez basically succeeds Chris Mezger, who didn’t return after his stellar 2012 season.
Rodriguez has had a 33-26 record with an ERA of 4.13 in ten seasons in American pro leagues. He struck out 417 and walked 275 in 577 1/3 innings. He will make his Huskies debut on Sunday against the Savigny Lions and was especially acquired to reinforce the pitching staff for the European Cup in Barcelona in June.