Mark Melancon, Relief Pitcher/Closer, San Francisco Giants
Date of Birth: 3/28/1985
Birthplace: Wheat Ridge, Colorado
College: University of Arizona
Current Salary: $9,000,000
Mark Melancon, relief pitcher/closer for the San Francisco Giants, was first drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2003 but he opted instead for college. He became a closer in his sophomore year at the University of Arizona.
Melancon was drafted by the New York Yankees in 2006 and he spent that season in their minor league system. He had Tommy John surgery in 2007 and he missed the entire season. In 2008, he returned to the minors and continued there until 2009, when he joined the Yankees for 13 games.
After two games with the Yankees in 2010, Melancon was traded to the Houston Astros. He pitched in 20 games with the Astros that year. The next year, he had a full season in the majors, pitching a career high 74.1 innings for the Astros. He finished the 2011 season with a 2.78 ERA, an 8-4 record, and 20 saves.
The Astros traded Melancon to the Boston Red Sox in December, 2011. He split his time in 2012 between the minors and the Red Sox, pitching 45.0 innings for Boston. He was traded again in December, 2012, this time to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Melancon pitched from the Pirates' bullpen in 2013, both as a regular relief pitcher and as their closer. He finished the season with a career low ERA of 1.39 and 16 saves in 71.0 innings in 72 games. He signed a one-year, $5.4 million contract with the Pirates in January, 2014. He was their closer in 2014 and he finished with a 1.90 ERA and 33 saves in 72 games.
Melancon had a strong 2015 season as the Pirates' closer. He led the National League in saves with 51 and he was named the 2015 NL Reliever of the Year. He finished the season with career highs in saves, innings pitched (76.2), and games (78). He had a 2.23 ERA and 62 strikeouts to 14 walks. He pitched one inning in the postseason Wild Card game and he gave up one hit.
Melancon was traded to the Washington Nationals on July 30, 2016. He finished the 2016 season with a 1.64 ERA in 45 games with the Pirates and 30 games with the Nationals. He had 2 wins to 2 losses, 47 saves, and 65 strikeouts to 12 walks in 71.1 innings. In the postseason, he pitched 4.1 innings in 4 games and he gave up 3 hits and no runs.
Melancon signed a four-year, $62 million contract with the Giants on December 5, 2016.
Career pitching statistics for Melancon through 2016 include:
- 444 games played
- 447.0 innings pitched
- 21-18 win-loss record
- 168 saves
- 407 strikeouts to 101 walks
- 2.60 ERA
Melancon and his wife Mary Catherine were married in 2009. They have two children.