37-Year-Old Pitcher – Free Agent
2015 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
Chen began the 2014 season in the Royals' rotation, but after an inflamed disc in his back cost him most of May and June, Danny Duffy eventually replaced him. The 15-year veteran simply couldn't get i...
Bruce Chen Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, $4.25 million contract with the Royals in January of 2014. Deal includes a mutual option for 2015.
Chen was designated for assignment Friday.
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Bruce Chen Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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2014 Stat Review for Bruce Chen As compared to the top 100 starting pitchers in 2013 (min 140 in)
A collection of stats that measure different skills.
A few general measures of a pitcher's effectiveness.
Balls in play avg. and % of runners left stranded.
Bruce Chen: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
With an abundance of starters to open the 2013 season, Chen was moved to the bullpen where he found new life as a key reliever for the team. He made 20 appearances in the first half of the season and posted a 2.04 ERA with a 28:14 K:BB over 39.2 innings. He had some impressive outings and twice went more than six straight appearances without allowing a single run. But injuries to the back-end of the Royals' rotation forced the team to start him again in the second half and over 81.1 innings (14 starts), he posted a 3.87 ERA with a reduced strikeout rate and an increase in HR/9. He may have finished the year with a respectable 3.27 ERA, but his dropoff in the second half seems more indicative of his talent level than his first half did. Chen will likely find a new home, as the Royals' bullpen is stacked and their rotation plans do not appear to include him. Whether he finds work as a starter or a reliever is yet to be seen, but either way, his value and upside in fantasy is quite minimal.
While Chen was considered the leader of the Royals rotation and posted his third straight double-digit win season, his 5.07 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and .278 BAA were more indicative of the type of pitcher he really is. He did increase his strikeout rate slightly while lowering his walk rate, but he also served up 33 long balls and finished with a rather unimpressive 4.73 FIP. He is not overpowering anyone with a fastball that tops out at 86 mph so his success hinges on his ability to fool hitters, something he was unable to do much of last season. Chen will be back on the hill every fifth game for the Royals in 2013, but at 35 years old, his career is certainly not trending upwards.
Chen turned in another productive season for the Royals in 2011 as he registered 97 strikeouts and 50 walks with a 3.77 ERA over 155 innings. His 1.94 K/BB ratio was his highest since 2006, when he was with the Orioles. One reason for his success is his slider, which he threw nearly 28 percent of the time, the most in his career. If owners can deal with the lack of strikeouts, Chen should once again be a valuable back-end starter in deeper leagues after returning to the Royals on a two-year deal in November.
The veteran Chen pitched well for the Royals in 2010, but remains an unsigned free agent with Kansas City continuing its rebuilding process. The 33-year-old posted an ERA+ of more than 100 for the first time since 2005 after three consecutive sub-80 seasons. His 2010 BABIP of .272 is line with his career average, so a regression isn't necessarily a done deal.
The soft-tossing Chen came back down to earth in 2006, as he was knocked out of the rotation early on and finished with a 6.93 ERA and 1.74 WHIP in 98.2 innings. Still, there's plenty of teams desperate to fill out their rotations; Chen could get a spring training invitation somewhere in 2007, but don't expect big things even if he makes a major league roster.
In a season of ups and downs for Orioles starters, Chen was easily the brightest spot and most consistent pitcher of the rotation. The journeyman posted a respectable 13 wins, 133 strikeouts, 3.83 ERA and 1.267 WHIP in 197 1/3 innings. Still relatively young, he should maintain a decent ERA while putting up solid-if-unspectacular strikeout numbers as a middle-of-the-rotation starter in 2006.
After having success at Triple-A Ottawa, Chen was called up at the end of the season. He'll be given an opportunity to win a starting spot in spring training, but with the Orioles likely to bring in at least one high-profile free agent pitcher in the offseason, Chen will likely be cast aside in favor of youngsters Daniel Cabrera, Erik Bedard, Matt Riley and Kurt Ainsworth.
Chen keeps popping up on teams, but hasn't stuck with any of them. He has signed a minor league deal with the Blue Jays, and has a pretty good chance of getting called up for a spot start or a long relief role.
Chen has now completed 80% of his tour of the NL East, frustrating managers with his potential every step of the way. He pitched better with the Reds, and better in relief. He still might get a chance to start this spring. One promising note - through all of his struggles, Chen's strikeout rate remained high - 80 Ks in 77 2/3 IP.