Lucas Sims
Lucas Sims
25-Year-Old PitcherRP
Cincinnati Reds
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Sims came over to the Reds in the Adam Duvall deal at the trade deadline last year, having stagnated in the Braves' organization. Upon arriving at Triple-A Louisville, Sims performed well over 28 innings, with a 32:5 K:BB ratio, albeit at the cost of five homers allowed. The Reds called him up in September but he had to be shut down after three appearances thanks to a strained teres major in his upper right arm. Like many in the organization, Sims is a flawed pitching prospect with an uncertain role. He is not without pedigree (first-round pick in 2012) and won't turn 25 until May. However, the Reds seem to be looking to speed up their rebuild, and therefore won't give him a long leash as a starter if he can help out of the big-league bullpen. Read Past Outlooks
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$Traded to the Reds in August of 2018.
Loses rotation battle
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
March 22, 2019
Sims was reassigned to minor-league camp Friday.
Sims was fighting with Tyler Mahle to break camp as the Reds' fifth starter, but the right-hander will open the year back in the minors after stumbling to an 8.10 ERA and 1.80 WHIP through 6.2 innings this spring. He'll remain an option to start for the Reds down the line should another opportunity arise.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
No Stats
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .281 152 23 26 34 13 1 3
Since 2017vs Right .276 180 37 10 45 7 1 9
2019vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018vs Left .192 37 5 11 5 2 0 1
2018vs Right .278 40 11 2 10 1 0 2
2017vs Left .305 115 18 15 29 11 1 2
2017vs Right .276 140 26 8 35 6 1 7
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
ERA at Home
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ERA on Road
ERA at Home
Since 2017Home 5.49 1.45 39.1 1 2 0 7.3 4.3 1.6
Since 2017Away 6.62 1.71 34.0 2 4 0 7.4 4.5 1.3
2019Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018Home 10.64 2.36 11.0 0 0 0 9.8 9.0 2.5
2018Away 0.00 0.43 4.2 0 0 0 7.7 3.9 0.0
2017Home 3.49 1.09 28.1 1 2 0 6.4 2.5 1.3
2017Away 7.67 1.91 29.1 2 4 0 7.4 4.6 1.5
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Lucas Sims
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
After opening the 2017 season toiling for Triple-A Gwinnett, recording a 3.75 ERA and 1.14 WHIP with 132 strikeouts and 36 walks in 115.1 innings, Sims made his major-league debut for the Braves on August 1, appearing in 14 games (10 starts). Results were mixed as the right-hander's strikeout rate was a pedestrian 17 percent with a high nine percent walk rate. As a flyball pitcher, Sims needs to limit free passes to minimize damage done by the inevitable homers he allows. Not overpowering with a fastball velocity in the 91-93 mph range, Sims uses five pitches, all more than 10 percent of the time, including a sinker, slider, curveball and changeup. This repertoire plays as a starter if he can hone control so batters don't know what to expect. While Sims is still just 23 years old, he's one of several young arms the Braves are hoping to emerge as rotation staples. A solid spring could earn Sims a rotation spot, with a bullpen role as the fallback.
While Sims has featured a plus fastball and plus curveball for several years now, his inability to find the strike zone over the past couple seasons flipped his realistic outlook from mid-rotation starter to high-leverage reliever. He completely changed that narrative in a return trip to Triple-A in 2017, posting a 7.7 percent walk rate -- his lowest mark over a significant stretch as a professional. That drastic improvement has earned him a look in the big-league rotation, but he will only have a limited amount of time to show those command/control gains are legitimate, as the Braves have a host of more highly acclaimed pitching prospects who will be ready at some point in 2018, with more on the way in 2019. If Sims can prove to be pitch efficient and keep the walks in a manageable range, he has the stuff to post average or better strikeout rates as a starter. If he gets squeezed out, he will be on the short list of potential Braves closers in 2019 and beyond.
A freak hip injury, suffered in a team bus crash while with High-A Carolina, cost Sims nearly seven weeks of the season. Once cleared to return, Sims joined Double-A Mississippi rather than return to Carolina, and while the results were generally strong in nine starts for Mississippi, control issues continued to plague him. The 21-year-old showed improvement in that regard during the Arizona Fall League, issuing just three passes while fanning 17 in 17 innings, earning the start for the West in the Fall Stars game. Sims flashes two potential plus pitches (fastball and curveball) and mixes in a changeup, but the control will have to stabilize before he's given a chance in the major league rotation, and there are questions as to whether he can stick in the rotation long-term. He will attend camp as a non-roster invitee but figures to open the year back at Double-A with a chance to contribute later in the year.
The move up to High-A Lynchburg in 2014 came with a steep learning curve -- he posted a 5.00 ERA and a dismal 38:25 K:BB in 72 first-half innings -- but Sims showed the type of promise late in the year that made him the 21st overall pick in the 2012 first-year player draft. Sims was able to miss bats at a much higher clip in the second half (69 strikeouts in 84.2 innings) while seeing only a slight uptick in walks (from 3.1 BB/9 to 3.4), resulting in a 3.51 ERA after the All-Star break and 2.88 ERA in August. The right-hander's curveball and changeup are still developing behind his 93-95 mph fastball, but Sims has the potential to feature three plus offerings at the major league level, giving him claim to being the Braves' top pitching prospect in many minds. New president of baseball operations John Hart seems to be looking several years ahead, so the team will likely take its time with Sims, meaning a jump to Double-A Mississippi early in 2015 is not necessarily a given.
Considered the top pitching prospect in the Braves organization, Sims was dominant in his first season at Low-A Rome (2.62 ERA, 10.3 K/9, 3.5 BB/9). When the 2014 season opens, Sims will still be just 19 years old, and while those in dynasty leagues will likely want to pick him up, those in re-draft leagues can leave him be, as it's hard to imagine he'd get a run with the big club in 2014, given the team's pitching depth. It's believed that Sims could be future option in the front of the Atlanta rotation, however, so patience in dynasty formats could pay significant dividends.
The Braves' 2012 first-round draft pick won't be contributing to non-keeper fantasy teams anytime soon. Even in keeper leagues, it is probably worthwhile to wait a couple years to see how he develops. Sims is still a teenager, after all, and has only played rookie ball in his brief career. Sims features a fastball that sits in the low-to-mid-90s and a good changeup. He was also lauded for his control in his high school career. High school draftees always sound great and by all means they are immensely talented, but many flame out in the lower rungs of the minors when they face more advanced competition. He'll likely see time at Low-A Rome for his first full professional season in 2013.
More Fantasy News
Mediocre against White Sox
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
March 19, 2019
Sims started against the White Sox on Tuesday night and allowed two runs on three hits, including a homer by Jose Abreu. He also allowed two walks while striking out one.
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Serves up two homers
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
March 3, 2019
Sims gave up three runs on four hits -- including two home runs -- while striking out three in one inning against the Brewers on Sunday.
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Possibly done for season
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
September 14, 2018
Sims is out with a strained teres major in his upper right arm and may not return before the end of the season, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
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Summoned to majors
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
September 1, 2018
Sims was recalled from Triple-A Louisville on Saturday.
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Dealt to Cincinnati
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
July 30, 2018
Sims was traded from the Braves to the Reds along with Matt Wisler and Preston Tucker in exchange for Adam Duvall on Monday.
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