33-Year-Old Pitcher – Kansas City Royals
2016 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
Duensing had perhaps the worst season of his career in 2015 and his effectiveness as a lefty specialist is in doubt at age 33. He has been outstanding against left-handed batters in his career (.609 O...
Brian Duensing Contract Information:
Signed a minor league contract with the Royals in April of 2016.
Duensing re-signed with the Royals on a minor league contract Friday, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports.
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Brian Duensing Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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2016 Stat Review for Brian Duensing As compared to the top 100 relief pitchers in 2015 (min 55 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.
Kansas City Royals Roster
MajorsButera, Drew (C)
AAAAlexander, Scott (P)
AABinford, Christian (P)
A+Antonio, Mike (SS)
AAparicio, Julio (OF)
RookieAracena, Ricky (SS)
Brian Duensing: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Duensing had another solid season of middle relief for the Twins with a 3.38 ERA, but there were some worrisome signs as the 8.3 K/9 rate he showed in 2013 looked like a fluke as his 5.5 K/9 in 2014 was close to his career average. His walks allowed have also been increasing, leading to the worst K/BB ratio of his career last season. Still, Duensing is especially tough on left-handed batters with a .587 OPS allowed to lefties last season. As long as his exposure to righties is limited (.822 OPS allowed last year) – and the Twins have long since given up on him moving to the rotation – he should be an effective lefty in the bullpen.
After four seasons of shuffling Duensing between the bullpen and rotation, the Twins finally decided to keep him in the bullpen last season. He was never able to hold a spot in the rotation due to his struggles against right-handed batters ( .821 OPS vs. righties) and he appeared better used as a lefty specialist given his dominance against left-handed batters (.600 OPS vs. lefties). However, he wasn't as successful against lefties in 2013 (.786 OPS). It may be a one-year fluke, however, as he had a 36:7 K:BB ratio against lefties and his 3.40 FIP shows he may have been a little unlucky. He'll return to a setup role again in 2014 and is a bounce-back candidate as a result, but his usage pattern limits his fantasy value since he won't get many wins or saves.
Duensing began last season in the bullpen, but he was moved back to the rotation in July when the Twins became desperate for starters. The results were predictable as Duensing has struggled as a starter in his career, but thrived as a reliever because of large platoon splits (.808 OPS allowed vs. righties compared to .678 OPS allowed to lefties last year). Duensing had a 6.92 ERA as a starter last season and a 3.47 ERA as a reliever. It is not clear if the Twins consider him a candidate for the 2013 rotation at this point, but he is much better served as a reliever who can mostly focus on left-handed hitters.
After going 12-3 with a 2.97 ERA as a starter in 2009 and 2010, Duensing finally won a spot in the starting rotation last spring, going 9-13 with a 5.24 ERA in 28 starts. However, he was exposed to too many right-handed hitters as a starter, as they had a .947 OPS against him. Meanwhile, Duensing dominated left-handed hitters by allowing just a .522 OPS. The Twins plan to move Duensing back to the bullpen in 2012 after he had a 1.80 ERA as a reliever in 2010, so he can be an impact arm against lefties in that role.
Duensing began last season in the bullpen but moved into the rotation in July and enters 2011 as Minnesota's No. 3 or No. 4 starter. Duensing lost out on a rotation job in the spring despite a strong late season performance in 2009 (5-1 with a 2.59 ERA and 31:14 K:BB ratio in 48.2 innings over eight starts). He was effective out of the bullpen with a 1.67 ERA, but moved back into a starting role in July. He repeated his 2009 success in the rotation by going 7-2 with a 3.05 ERA. However, behind those strong numbers were a weak strikeout rate (5.3 K/9IP) and a likely unsustainable .276 BABIP. Duensing does have good control and keeps the ball on the ground (52 percent of balls in play), so there are reasons to think he can sustain his recent success in the rotation. However, don't overpay for the success he's had as a starter the past two seasons.
Duensing wasn't a highly regarded prospect, but when given a chance to start last September he caught fire to help the Twins in a pennant race and made a strong case to begin 2010 in the starting rotation. Duensing moved into the rotation in late August and went 5-1 with a 2.59 ERA and 31:14 K:BB ratio in 48.2 innings over eight starts. However, there are several signs he may not be able to keep up that success since he had just 5.7 K/9IP and had mediocre strikeout rates in the minors along with just average control. Still, he came up big in several tough starts in a pennant race and is the leading candidate for the fifth starter job.
The 2005 third-round draft pick was 11-5 with a 3.24 ERA and 86:30 K:BB ratio in 116.2 innings at Triple-A Rocheter last season. He then was the starting pitcher as Team USA beat Cuba to win the IBAF Baseball World Cup last fall. He's got a fastball around 90 mph so he's not posting huge strikeout totals and his command is good enough, while not great, to keep moving up in the system. He'll likely begin the season at Triple-A, but could be a factor in the majors later in the season.