39-Year-Old Pitcher – Free Agent
2014 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
There was no outlook written for Kris Benson in 2014. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Kris Benson Contract Information:
Contract purchased by the Diamondbacks in April 2010.
Benson has formally decided to retire, FoxSports.com reports.
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Kris Benson Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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Kris Benson: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Kris Benson.
At a certain point, big league teams are going to stop taking a chance on Benson. He's been hampered by injuries over the last four seasons, making just five starts during that span. Throw in the fact that he's now 36 and it's easy to see a guy who will probably decide to call it a career before Opening Day.
Benson opted for season-ending surgery to repair a partially torn rotator cuff in March, after first getting diagnosed with the injury in February and attempting to pitch through it. He's now going through the long rehab phase and starting to throw from a mound this offseason. He has the disadvantage of doing this while being a free agent, meaning that it might not be until late in spring training before he finds his next employer, which almost assuredly will not be the Orioles.
The decrease in Benson's effectiveness last season can be explained by his move to the American League. In interleague play, Benson went 3-1 with a tidy 2.83 ERA and 1.17 WHIP in five starts against the familiar NL East. In 25 American League starts, however, Benson went 8-11 with a 5.29 ERA and 1.46 WHIP. Moreover, Benson went 1-2 with a 10.03 ERA and 2.06 WHIP in five starts against the Red Sox and Yankees, though in seven starts against the Blue Jays and Devil Rays he did go 5-2 with a 2.70 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. The true story of the 32-year-old's performance, however, can be attributed to his horrendous 88:58 K:BB and 4.33 K:9 ratios. Basically, he's getting by on veteran savvy rather than arm strength now, and as he gets older he should continue to decline.
Benson, who missed just one start in 2004, became his old injury-prone self again last year. He missed all of April with a strained right pectoral muscle and finally got going in June and July, when he was one of the Mets' best pitchers. Then came shoulder soreness in mid-August. Fittingly, he ended the year winning just one of his last five starts. There are rumors the Mets have given up on him as a No. 2 starter and will seek a trade. If he stays and is healthy, the pitcher's park and an improved lineup behind him signal a rebound.
Benson nearly made it through a full season healthy for just the first time since the 2000 campaign, missing just one start. His early-season performance, coupled with his impending free agency, paved the way for a trade deadline deal to the Mets. Benson struggled in four of his first five starts in New York, before being shut down with a sore shoulder for 10 days. That time off restored the bite to his slider and velocity, resulting in four quality starts in his last five outings. The Mets re-signed him to a three-year, $22.5 million deal and he will slide in as the team's #3 starter behind Pedro Martinez and Tom Glavine. With a better defense behind him and a full year pitching at Shea Stadium, improvement seems more than reasonable.
Tantalized by his great arm, many projected Benson (who was the No. 1 pick overall in 1996) as the Bucs' top starter going into 2003, but once again his season was cut short by injury, this time his shoulder. He was on the trading block before he was hurt and is a free agent at the end of next season, so look for the Pirates to deal him once it's established that he is healthy. At this point, a change of scenery would do the soon-to-be 30-year old hurler wonders.
Benson might have come back from elbow surgery too soon, as evidenced by his 7.79 ERA in his first eight starts back. He was much better late in the year, posting a 3.52 ERA and 38/18 K/BB in his last ten starts. Look for him to be good, not great, in 2003; 12-13 wins for a mediocre team, an ERA in the high 3.00s, and 7.0 K/9 is possible.