Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Remembering Chad Cordero

(Photo Courtesy - wikipedia.org)

Chad Cordero is a name that is remembered quite fondly in NatsTown, and for good reason. Cordero was the NL saves leader in 2005 with 47. He finished 5th in Cy Young voting as a closer that season. Up until the very end of the 2005 season, when The Chief entered the game in the 9th inning with a lead, the game was over. The Nats would win. He was an integral part of the historic 2005 Nationals team that brought baseball back to Washington and provided the only .500 or above record to the Nation's Capital since the team returned.

Cordero is also the 2nd youngest player in MLB history to reach 100 saves, a milestone that took place in 2007, shortly before his career with the Nationals came to an end. The Chief missed all of the 2008 season recovering from surgery to repair a torn labrum. After refusing assignment to AAA Syracuse in 2009, he tried to make it with the Mariners, Mets, and Blue Jays, before announcing his retirement on June 20, 2011.

Like most of you, we were disappointed, though not shocked, to hear of Cordero's retirement. Despite the severity of his injury, I think we all hoped that Chad would make a huge push toward recovery and become the pitcher that he was in 2005, even if it wasn't with the Nationals.

Does The Chief's tenure with the Nats earn him a retired number or his name in the Ring of Honor? It's not likely. But one thing is certain. Nats fans will forever remember the flat-brimmed, charismatic closer that brought baseball back to Washington in 2005, and the organization should make every effort to honor Cordero for his contribution to that team.

What is your favorite Chad Cordero memory, CapBallers? Share it with us in the comments.


  1. I always liked the Chief, especially his entrance to Metallica's "King Nothing." His saves frequently gave me heart palpitations. I have a distinct memory of the Chief protecting 2-1 leads in the following manner:

    Out #1
    3-2 count, single
    3-2 count, walk
    Double steal
    3-2 count, walk to load the bases
    Line drive with extra bases written all over it, Zim makes incredible diving catch for out #2
    another 3-2 count
    450-foot blast just barely foul
    Ball crushed to deep center, CF leans against wall to make catch for out #3

  2. That's the Cardiac Cordero we know and love.

  3. I think it's a testament that whenever there's a save situation that's very tense, Cordero is the first guy we in our thoughts.

    I don't really have a favorite moment, but he will always be the first closer I saw for this team and as such will not be easily forgotten.

  4. Well said, YellowSlant - Thanks for reading!