Jimmy Nelson
Jimmy Nelson
29-Year-Old PitcherSP
Milwaukee Brewers
Out
Injury Shoulder
Est. Return 4/14/2019
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Nelson was coming into his own late in the 2017 season before injuring his shoulder while running the bases, of all things. The Brewers took the cautious route with Nelson's recovery and did not provide a return timetable, and he wound up missing the entire 2018 campaign due to his setback. While Nelson missed the entirety of the Brewers' postseason push, he entered the offseason healthy, and will be able to prepare as normal for the 2019 campaign. Nelson is a wild card for both the Brewers and fantasy owners, but given the way he was throwing late in the 2017 campaign, he's going to have some fantasy intrigue. If healthy, he will head into the regular season this year with a spot in the Brewers' rotation. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $3.7 million contract with the Brewers in December of 2018, avoiding arbitration.
Backing off with sore elbow
PMilwaukee Brewers
Shoulder
March 22, 2019
Nelson will back off a bit after experiencing some elbow soreness Friday, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
ANALYSIS
The team doesn't view the issue as a serious one and believes Nelson could be ready for the start of the Triple-A season, where he'll spend some time building up his arm strength on a rehab assignment as he recovers from shoulder surgery. That's certainly good news, but elbow problems of any kind are always a worry for pitchers, so the issue is worth keeping an eye on.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-9%
BAA vs LHP
2018
No Stats
2017
 
 
-8%
BAA vs LHP
2016
 
 
-11%
BAA vs LHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .249 731 168 80 158 31 3 21
Since 2016vs Right .275 804 171 54 199 26 2 20
2018vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2017vs Left .246 354 107 31 78 16 0 10
2017vs Right .267 374 92 17 93 12 1 6
2016vs Left .252 377 61 49 80 15 3 11
2016vs Right .283 430 79 37 106 14 1 14
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-34%
ERA at Home
2018
No Stats
2017
 
 
-19%
ERA at Home
2016
 
 
-43%
ERA at Home
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2016Home 3.27 1.33 189.0 11 11 0 8.7 3.2 0.9
Since 2016Away 4.97 1.45 164.2 9 11 0 8.5 3.7 1.1
2018Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2017Home 3.14 1.28 94.2 6 4 0 10.4 2.6 0.6
2017Away 3.90 1.21 80.2 6 2 0 10.0 2.3 1.1
2016Home 3.40 1.37 95.1 5 7 0 7.0 3.8 1.3
2016Away 6.00 1.68 84.0 3 9 0 7.1 4.9 1.2
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
Everything finally came together for Nelson in 2017, but a shoulder injury suffered while running the bases in September cut short what was the best season to date for him and puts a cloud over his 2018 campaign. Nelson struggled in a couple starts early, but over his final 24 outings, he posted a 3.13 ERA and struck out a whopping 176 batters over 146.2 innings. He did not add much velocity, but he made major strides in the control and home-run prevention departments and caused plenty of uncertainty with both a quality slider and curveball. Nelson's strikeout numbers would have made him an appealing target in the earlier rounds of 2018 drafts, but he needed surgery to repair a torn labrum, and will miss, according to the Brewers, a "meaningful" portion of the 2018 campaign. While he lacks a target date for his return, Nelson will be worth grabbing as a lottery ticket at some point in drafts in leagues with ample reserve or disabled list spots. Whether or not that ticket pays off will not be known until he gets further into his recovery.
Nelson wasn't great in 2015, but he gave fantasy owners and Brewers fans reason to believe big things could be in his future if he could just harness his control. So much for that. In 2016, Nelson walk rate jumped to 4.3 BB/9, a rise of a full point over his 2015 mark. The result was a mediocre 4.62 ERA, as he paid dearly for each of the career-high 25 home runs he allowed. Nelson threw his curveball for a ball more than 40 percent of the time, making it easy for hitters to just spit on it and wait for him to throw the fastball. His sinker become too predictable as a result and couldn't do the job it was supposed to, as hitters managed 12 home runs and a .472 slugging percentage against it. The Brewers should be patient with the 27-year-old Nelson, but he's running out of chances to figure things out and prove he belongs in a major league rotation.
Nelson finished last year with mediocre numbers. He has showed big-time stuff since his arrival in 2013 but hasn't been able to harness his control. He walked 3.3 batters per nine innings and had four starts with at least four walks, including one start in which he walked eight in just 3.1 innings. The upside is obvious, as Nelson had six starts of at least six shutout innings – only 10 major leaguers had more. If Nelson can cut out the lowest of his lows – the three starts in which he allowed at least six earned runs – he could become a great pitcher. Nelson turns 27 this year, so he needs to turn that corner sooner rather than later.
Nelson’s showing with Triple-A Nashville in 2014 was some type of spectacular, as he posted a 1.46 ERA and limited opposing hitters to a .179 batting average in the hitter’s haven known as the PCL. He didn’t experience the same type of success after being called up to the big club, but he should at some point thanks to a quality fastball and slider and his ability to keep the ball in the park. Though Nelson clearly does not need more work against minor league hitters, he may get it, as the Brewers could send him to Triple-A to keep him stretched out as a starter if he does not secure a spot in the big league rotation during the spring.
Nelson emerged as the Brewers’ top prospect in 2013, posting a 3.25 ERA and striking out 163 batters in 152.1 innings across the top two levels of the minor leagues. His walk rate jumped sharply at Triple-A, but he still managed to give up just two home runs over 83.1 innings in the hitter-friendly PCL. Nelson features both a plus fastball and slider, and he is also working on developing a changeup. That pitch could be the key to his success, but the Brewers have high hopes for Nelson in the future. He figures to open 2014 as the ace of the Triple-A Nashville rotation, but should be among the top options if the Brewers need to call up a starter from the minors.
After an average season in 2011 at Low-A Wisconsin, Nelson came out firing on all cylinders at High-A Brevard County in 2012. In 13 starts, he had a 2.21 ERA with 77 strikeouts and a 1.08 WHIP before receiving a promotion to Double-A Huntsville in June. Nelson found mixed success in 10 starts at that level and finished with a 3.91 ERA while struggling a bit with command (1.1 K/BB). Overall, last season was a step forward for Nelson, and it re-established his place among the Brewers' better pitching prospects. He will likely return to Double-A to begin 2013, but could receive his first exposure to Triple-A in Nashville. If he fares well, a late-season big league callup is not out of the question given the lack of depth in the Milwaukee rotation.
More Fantasy News
IL-bound to open year
PMilwaukee Brewers
Shoulder
March 19, 2019
Manager Craig Counsell confirmed Nelson (shoulder) will open the season on the injured list, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
ANALYSIS
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Allows one unearned run
PMilwaukee Brewers
Shoulder
March 16, 2019
Nelson (shoulder) struck out four and gave up one unearned run on two hits across three innings during Saturday's spring game against the Rockies.
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Won't make Opening Day roster
PMilwaukee Brewers
Shoulder
March 12, 2019
Manager Craig Counsell announced Tuesday that Nelson (shoulder) will not be present on the Brewers' Opening Day roster, Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports.
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Makes long-awaited spring debut
PMilwaukee Brewers
March 11, 2019
Nelson (shoulder) allowed two runs on four hits and struck out three in one inning Monday against the White Sox.
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Set for spring debut
PMilwaukee Brewers
Shoulder
March 8, 2019
Nelson (shoulder) is set to make his Cactus League debut Monday against the White Sox, Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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