Lampre-Merida's Polish rider Przemyslaw Niemiec took victory on stage 15 of the Vuelta a Espana as the sole survivor of an early breakaway.
Team Sky's Chris Froome was distanced by his main rivals during the stage, but recovered to finish sixth, 12 seconds behind Valverde and Rodriguez.
"I'm happy to be at Lampre as well and I hope this win will help me with my contract negotiations. I know I won here but I'm quite happy working for Michele Scarponi and being the last guy with him on the climbs."
Stage 16 of the Vuelta a Espana, a 160.5km route between San Martín del Rey Aurelio and Lagos de Somiedo, takes place tomorrow.