Badenhop performed well for the Rays out of the bullpen, coming in and generating needed ground balls to help get out of late inning trouble. A former starter for the Florida Marlins, he transitioned to the bullpen full time in 2010. Acquired in a trade for Jake Jefferies almost a year ago, he produced his best season in the majors this past year, producing a 3-2 record with a 3.03 ERA. In 62.1 innings, spanning 66 games, he struck out 42 batters while walking only 12 batters. Badenhop’s true value, however, comes from his ability to generate ground balls. In 2012, he produced a ground ball in just under 53% of his opponents plate appearances.
Mondesi, although he was not considered one of the Brewers top thirty prospects, is a bit intriguing. For the Brewers rookie league team, he produced a .231/.282/.374 batting line, with 5 home runs and 32 RBI. Mondesi also had 12 doubles, 6 triples, and 8 stolen bases. However, he has displayed a tendency to strike out in bunches, striking out 87 times in 273 at bats. He also did not walk a lot, with only 14 walks for the season. Like his father, Mondesi also has a nice arm, with 11 outfield assists last year.
In fact, Mondesi Jr, although still a raw talent, could develop into a solid major league piece. While some scouting reports compare him favorably to his father, Mondesi Jr does have a long way to go before one could consider him as that type of a player. However, his power/speed blend, and his plus arm in the outfield, do make him an interesting prospect.
Even though Badenhop was solid for the Rays in 2012, his loss likely will not keep the Rays from contending in 2013. To get a player with the potential that Mondesi Jr has for a middle reliever is the type of move that can potentially help the Rays develop an impact bat. While this move may not pay dividends in the near future, it could turn out great down the road.