(Update: Ankiel has signed with the New York Mets and is in the starting lineup tonight.)
Should Rick Ankiel reinvent himself again and become a left-handed reliever to prolong his professional baseball career?
The Houston Astros recently designated the once heralded pitching prospect for assignment. In 2013, Ankiel produced a .194/.231/.484 slash line while striking out a whopping 35 times in 62 at-bats.
Ankiel was the runner-up in the 2000 Rookie Of The Year balloting following an 11-7 season, 3.50 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, and 194 K. However, the southpaw battled an extreme case of wildness during the playoffs, walking 11 batters and uncorking 9 wild pitches in only four innings pitched.
This was the beginning of the end to a once promising MLB pitching career. The following season, Ankiel continued to struggle by issuing 25 walks (+25 hits) in 24 innings before being demoted to the minor leagues.
The left-hander suffered through many setbacks in the proceeding campaigns including an el...