- John David Weathers (Baseball Reference coolly refers to him as "Dave") was born in Lawrenceburg, TN, home of amateur politician Fred Thompson and a famous Jeter. Weathers attended Motlow State Community College, but was drafted in the 3rd round of the 1988 draft by the Blue Jays at the age of 19.
- Weathers made his Major League debut on Aug. 2, 1991 for the Blue Jays at the age of 21. He pitched a scoreless inning against the Red Sox, striking out Ellis Burks. In fact, he didn't allow a run in his first four appearances, but then things got shaky. Weathers finished the season with a 4.91 ERA and an eye-popping 2.182 WHIP in 15 innings.
- After only appearing in two games in 1992 (and being left off the postseason roster), he was selected by the Marlins in the 1992 expansion draft. It was the first of many moves for Weathers. After pitching in relief during the first half of 1993 (including in four losing efforts against the Reds), the Marlins inserted Weathers into the starting rotation. He wasn't very good, posting a 5.12 ERA and 1.533 WHIP, good for an 84 ERA+.
- Weathers was a starter for all of 1994 (8-12 record), then bounced between the bullpen and the rotation for the next four years for four different teams (Marlins, Yankees, Indians, Reds). He never had an ERA+ of higher than 90 for any of those teams.
- In 1996, Weathers was dealt at the trading deadline to the New York Yankees in exchange for Aussie pitcher Mark Hutton. (Hutton and Weathers would later be teammates on the 1998 Reds). The move was great for Weathers, as the Yankees won the World Series that year. Weathers pitched extremely well in the postseason, only allowing one run in 11 innings.
- As well as Weathers pitched in the playoffs, his time with the Yankees was the worst of his career. He pitched for the Yankees for parts of 1996 and 1997, and with them he had ERAs of 9.35 and 10.00 and WHIPs of 2.135 and 2.444. As such, the Yankees weren't sorry to give him up and traded him to the Indians for Chad Curtis (who would hit two home runs for the Yankees in the 1999 World Series). Weathers was only slightly less awful for the Indians, and at the end of the year was placed on waivers.
- The Reds claimed Weathers off waivers, figuring that they could always use another mediocre pitcher for their rotation. Weathers fit the bill, posting a 2-4 record, with a 6.21 ERA and a 1.813 WHIP, good for an ERA+ of 70. Lenny Harris had a better pitching line that year. (Check out how studly the bullpen was in 1998).
- The Reds didn't put up with Weathers for very long, placing him on waivers in June. He was subsequently claimed by the Brewers and went on to enjoy the most successful stint of his career. The Brewers moved him exclusively to the bullpen and Weathers responded by only posting an ERA+ of under 100 once in four years. Even that score of 97 in the 1999 season would have been the highest of his career. His other ERA+ numbers in Milwaukee: 133, 148, and 213. Pretty damn impressive.
- Milwaukee shrewdly flipped Weathers at the height of his career in a deadline deal to the Cubs in 2001 for Ruben Quevedo and Pete Zoccolillo... who didn't do anything to help the Brewers. Weathers pitched well for the Cubs, but they only finished third in the division. At the end of the season, he became a free agent and signed with the Mets. He pitched very well for two and a half years on some very bad Mets teams, and then in 2004 was traded with Jeremy Griffiths to the Astros for Richard Hidalgo. After a mediocre 26 games with Houston, the Astros released him in September, and he finished the season with the Marlins, having signed with Florida as a free agent. He accomplished the rare feat of playing for three teams in one season.
- The Reds signed Weathers as a free agent for the 2005 season, and he's been simultaneously steady and shaky for the Cincinnati bullpen ever since. While he always seems to have a runner or two on base, Weathers's WHIPs with Cincinnati have been quite reasonable, always between 1.210 and 1.290 until last season, when it was 1.529. Ironically, he had his lowest ERA and highest ERA+ of his Cincinnati era that year, suggesting he was exceptionally lucky and helped significantly by the defense behind him.
- The numbers are at odds with Red Reporter's perception of Weathers. There is often a collective breath-holding when he enters a game, but he has posted an ERA+ of 130 or better in his last three seasons, and never lower than 108. He has served as a closer, something he'd never been, and done it well, recording 60 of his 74 career saves. He may very well be the most underrated member of our bullpen.
- Weathers has pitched for nine different teams (he's pitched for the Reds and Marlins on two separate occasions). 2009 will be his fifth consecutive season with a team, something he's never done before. On the current team, only Aaron Harang has been with the Reds longer.
Drafted/Signed: Drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 3rd round (82nd overall pick) of the 1988 amateur entry draft.
Signed by Scout: Duane Larson
Drafted: By the Florida Marlins in the 1992 expansion draft (29th pick overall).
Traded: To the New York Yankees for Mark Hutton on Jul. 31, 1996.
Traded: To the Cleveland Indians for Chad Curtis on Jun. 9, 1997.
Selected off waivers: By the Cincinnati Reds on Dec. 20, 1997.
Selected off waivers: By the Milwaukee Brewers on Jun. 24, 1998.
Signed as free agent: By the Milwaukee Brewers on Dec. 2, 1999.
Traded: To the Chicago Cubs with Roberto Miniel for Ruben Quevedo and Pete Zoccolillo on Jul. 30, 2001.
Signed as free agent: By the New York Mets on Dec. 13, 2001.
Traded: To the Houston Astros with Jeremy Griffiths for Richard Hidalgo on Jun. 17, 2004.
Signed as free agent: By the Florida Marlins on Sep. 8, 2004.
Signed as free agent: By the Cincinnati Reds on Dec. 15, 2004.
GM when acquired by Reds: Dan O'Brien
MLB Service Time (as of Opening Day 2009): 15.044
Current Contract Status: 1 year, $3.9 million
Information courtesy of John Kalk's player cards at baseball.bornbybits.com
Weathers's inability to stick as a starter may be due to the fact that he has only two pitches, a fastball and a slider. Weathers gets by being able to throw a two seam and four seam fastball with the same arm action, but mixes up his speeds. His fastball sits around 87 mph, while his slider is around 82 mph. He relies mostly on his fastball, particularly against lefties (82% of pitches). He throws his slider most often in 0-2 and 2-1 counts, but his k-rate is not particularly high. He is a great example of a crafty veteran, and his durability makes him valuable.
RR Projected Wins Above Replacement: -0.05
This hot zone graph is modified for pitchers. The notes are at the bottom, but the easy way to read it is that darker areas are areas that the pitcher pitches too most often. And the cooler the color is, the better the hit type (from the pitcher's perspective). So, blue is best because those are areas of low contact. Green is next best because those are batted ball types that tend to be good for the pitcher (ground balls, pop flies). Red is the worst because those types of hits tend to hurt the pitcher the most. Slugging percentage is still listed as well to give you a better idea of the overall results from that zone.