31-Year-Old Pitcher – Free Agent
2015 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
Used primarily as a reliever, Villanueva started five games for the Cubs in 2014 - the eighth time in nine major league seasons that he started at least five games. Though his 4.64 ERA was nothing to ...
Carlos Villanueva Contract Information:
Became a free agent in October 2014.
Villanueva filed for free agency Thursday, Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune reports.
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Carlos Villanueva Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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2014 Stat Review for Carlos Villanueva 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.
Carlos Villanueva: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
In his first year with the Cubs, Villanueva appeared as a reliever in 32 games and started 15 other games, marking the sixth time he started at least six games in a season despite spending most of his career as a reliever. The versatility (not to mention his ERA/WHIP consistency the last three years) makes Villanueva more valuable on the diamond than in fantasy. He will probably once again pitch in relief, with occasional forays into the rotation. Keep in mind that he is generally much better as a reliever (3.03 ERA, 1.138 WHIP, 38:10 K:BB ratio last year) than as a starter (4.50 ERA, 1.256 WHIP, and 65:30 K:BB ratio last year), so plan accordingly.
For the second straight season Villanueva started double-digit games for the Blue Jays after opening the year in the bullpen. Just as it seemed he might take hold of a starting job for 2013, a September swoon left his role in question. Interestingly enough, his K/BB improved with the move into the rotation (3.4) on the strength of improved control. Unfortunately, those gains came with a spike in his home-run rate, leaving his future role up in the air even after signing a two-year deal with the Cubs despite the flashes of success he had every fifth day.
Villanueva appeared to change his approach to pitching as the former high-strikeout, average command, homer-prone pitcher transitioned into more of a change-of-speed, pitch-to-contact pitcher once he was moved into the starting rotation for Toronto. He faded badly down the stretch and dealt with some elbow soreness as the increased workload appeared to catch up with him. He'll likely get a chance to win a rotation spot this spring depending on how the Jays' winter goes, but he'll need to walk a fine line to survive in the AL East.
Villanueva pitched poorly in 2010 and was eventually sent to Triple-A Nashville in July. It was more of the same for him last season, a high strikeout rate, but also high home-run and walk rates. The Brewers gave up on him due to the inconsistency, and Villanueva was traded to Toronto in December where he will compete for a bullpen spot this spring.
Villanueva started the season as Milwaukee's defacto closer while Trevor Hoffman recovered from injury and ended the season buried in the bullpen. He's failed multiple times when given the opportunity to be a starter and now is looking at having to earn a role in the bullpen this spring. Villanueva strikes out a decent number of batters, but can't overcome his long-ball tendencies enough to be a consistent setup man. The Brewers will likely give him one more chance in 2010 to prove his worth.
The Brewers tried to use Villanueva as a starter, but moved him to the bullpen in May when he had a 6.43 ERA in nine starts. The move to the bullpen proved to work out well for him and he posted a 2.12 ERA from that point on. The Brewers will likely keep him in his bullpen role unless they are unable to find a suitable starter for the rotation. He's not going to get many saves, but he could strike out about a batter per inning while providing a low ERA.
Villanueva began the season in the Milwaukee bullpen and pitched very well for the first half of the year. The Brewers sent him to Triple-A after a rough stretch in August, and they put him into the rotation when he returned in September. He ended the season strong and finished with eight wins and a 3.94 ERA. There are some warning signs that might make you want to avoid Villanueva. He had a .276 BABIP, which will likely come up a bit. He also gave up 16 home runs and that's been a problem of his during his whole career. There's a good chance that he'll start the season in the Milwaukee rotation, though.
Villanueva is one of those guys who doesn't impress scouts, but always seems to pitch well anyway. After a very solid minor league season in 2005, he returned with a 3.22 ERA while splitting time between Double-A Huntsville and Triple-A Nashville. Called up to Milwaukee later in the season, he posted a 3.69 ERA in 53.2 innings and made six starts. The 23 year old doesn't throw hard but had good control and keeps hitters off balance by changing speeds. The Brewers hope he can work as the fourth or fifth starter in their 2006 rotation.
Villanueva doesn't throw hard, instead relying on great command to get hitters out, which limits his potential in the eyes of some scouts. Maybe his impressive year at high-A Brevard County will change some minds.