Dubbed the “Bridge to Lidge,” Ryan Madson has come a long way through the Phillies organization. A ninth-round pick out of high school in 1998, Madson arrived in the big leagues at the age of 22 and in the inaugural season of Citizen’s Bank Park, he became a fixture in the Phillies bullpen.
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In his rookie year Madson went 9-3 in 52 games, one being a start, with a 2.34 ERA anda 1.130 WHIP. Two years later the organization gave him a shot at the starting rotation with 17 starts, but a 5.69 ERA proved he resided in the back-end of the bullpen.
By the 2007 season, Madson settled into the bullpen role and became a critical piece of the most successful run in franchise history. En route to a division title, Madson had a 3.05 ERA and allowed only five home runs in 2007, and his success repeated as the set-up man in 2008 with an identical ERA.
Madson working ahead of Lidge in 2008 became a deadly combination for Philadelphia, and he earned 17 holds in that role.
When Madson and Lidge pitched in the same game during the Phillies 2008 season the team went 28-6.
During the 2008 postseason, Madson had a 2.13 ERA in 11 games, 10 of which were won.
Success carried over beyond the championship for Madson with a 2.55 ERA in 2010 and 2.37 in ’11. With Lidge ailing during the 2011 season, Madson saved a career-high 32 games before departing in free agency.
Injuries kept Madson out of baseball for three whole seasons, not throwing in a game until 2015 with the Royals in their championship season. He’s since pitched for Washington and Oakland with tremendous success, and is currently on the Nationals 40-man roster with an injury.