The veteran left-hander used his 10-team no-trade clause to veto a deal that would have sent him to the Los Angeles Dodgers ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline.
The decision surprised many; the Dodgers lead the NL West and the Tigers are well out of the playoff race. But Rodriguez maintained that the choice had more to do with just changing teams.
“The details of the trade weren’t what I wanted for me and my family, and I decided to stay in Detroit,” he said after giving up two runs on seven hits and striking out five in six innings. “It’s nothing against the Dodgers. They have a really good team over there. Just thinking about my future and my family.”
This offseason, Rodriguez can opt out of a five-year, $77 million deal he signed with the Tigers in 2021. And while he didn’t confirm his plans Wednesday, he noted he’s enjoyed his time in Detroit.
“If I had a magic ball and I could tell you what’s going to happen in the future, I’d probably tell you right away,” he told reporters. “Right now I am here. I signed with this organization for a long time and I’m happy with everything. My family feels happy in Detroit, and I’m happy with my teammates and the organization.
“I’d love to stay here.”
The Dodgers were surprised Rodriguez opted not to come to the West Coast, with president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman saying after Tuesday’s deadline passed: “We thought it was done. And then we learned that it wasn’t.”
The team even deployed some of its players, some of whom previously teamed with Rodriguez on the Boston Red Sox, in an effort to get him to change his mind, but to no avail.
“We thought with having a lot of his ex-teammates and guys he’s played with, our place in the standings, I thought we would be very desirable,” Friedman said.
“We never got a chance to talk to Eduardo. But we talked to his agent numerous times. We respect that he had this right and he exercised it. Obviously would’ve loved for him to join what we have going here. But it’s hard for us to argue with family reasons.”
Rodriguez moved to 7-5 with a 2.96 ERA following Wednesday’s win.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.