C.J. Wilson
C.J. Wilson
37-Year-Old PitcherRP
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2018 Fantasy Outlook
There was no outlook written for C.J. Wilson in 2018. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
$Wilson agreed to a five-year, $77.5 million contract with the Angels in December of 2011.
May be headed for retirement
PFree Agent  
Shoulder
February 10, 2017
Wilson said Thursday that he's turning his primary focus toward race car driving and the auto dealership that he owns, but hasn't formally announced his retirement from professional baseball, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. "I don't know. If the situation was right, maybe," Wilson said, in reference to his future in baseball. "But right now I'm here at the dealership. The most attractive offer I had was to race this season."
ANALYSIS
Wilson, 36, made just a lone rehab appearance in the minors in 2016 before requiring season-ending surgery on his throwing shoulder in July. Given his advancing age and poor health in recent years -- along with the fact that his production waned when he was healthy enough to pitch during his final three seasons with the Angels -- Wilson unsurprisingly attracted few interested suitors upon hitting free agency this winter, but it was still expected that he'd pitch in a showcase at some point in February. For the time being, it appears the showcase may no longer be in the cards, which would likely be the death knell for a potential comeback.
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Wilson was all ready to head into 2016 healthy following elbow surgery from the season prior, but his first bullpen of the spring turned things south from the get-go. He began feeling soreness in his shoulder during his first bullpen session in February, and even though an initial MRI only revealed tendinitis, the problem never subsided. The left-hander seemed to be close to returning in late May, but then another complication arose, leading him to opt for the surgical repair route of recovery in July, ending his season before it ever began. At 36 years old and coming off of a fairly significant injury, Wilson's best days are likely behind him. His 3.89 ERA in 21 starts during the 2015 season signals that there could be a bit left in the tank, but his health makes him a low-cost dart for a team desperate for rotation help if he's willing to get back on the mound in 2017.
Wilson seemed determined to put a disappointing 2014 season behind him, as he opened the year with earned run averages of 3.12 and 3.23 in the first two months, respectively, but was hammered in June and July, allowing 34 runs in 11 starts before an MRI revealed bone spurs in his elbow. The 34-year-old underwent season-ending surgery in August, but he is expected to a part of the 2016 rotation. Wilson showed he can still be a valuable pitcher in the opening months of the season, but the elbow surgery was the third of his career, which could leave one to wonder what he has left in the tank. Wilson will enter the final year of his contract in April, giving him plenty of incentive to attempt to be the reach the 200-plus innings mark for the fifth time in his career.
It looked as though Wilson was on track to give the Angels another quality season in 2014, as he posted a 3.05 ERA over the first two months. The wheels came off thereafter, however, and the 34-year-old failed to post an ERA below 4.76 in any of the remaining months of the season. To make matters worse, he departed from his steady delivery of 200-plus inning seasons, as he missed nearly three weeks with an ankle injury in July. Wilson's high walk rate has always been a problem for the veteran left-hander, but the free passes ran rampant in 2014, as he allowed 85 walks in just 175.2 frames. Wilson did some things well in 2014, as he kept his home run numbers in check while posting a decent strikeout rate, but he will need to get the walks back under control in order to be successful in 2015.
Wilson once again showed himself to be a pitcher who belongs at the top of the rotation in 2013, as the dependable lefty made 33 starts last season, and exceeded the 200 innings pitched mark for the fourth consecutive season. As he often does, Wilson combined quantity with quality, as he pitched to a 3.39 ERA, and carrying an 8.0 K/9, while sustaining a microscopic home-run rate (0.6 HR/9). If there is one knock on Wilson, it may be that he tends to allow too many baserunners, which was evidenced in 2013 by a 3.6 BB/9, but he stranded enough baserunners (73.5%) to outpace his mediocre 1.34 WHIP. Wilson will take up his position right behind Jered Weaver in 2014, as one of the mainstays in what is largely a chaotic Angels rotation heading into next season.
Wilson produced disappointing numbers in his first season as an Angel, but was actually excellent all year with the exception of a hideous run in the middle of the season where he allowed six or more earned runs four times in a stretch of eight starts. It turned out that Wilson was dealing with a bone spur in his pitching elbow, and after undergoing an arthroscopic procedure in October, he should be ready to deal by the time April rolls around. He'll certainly be expected to improve upon the 3.83 ERA that he posted last season, and figures to benefit from a pitcher-friendly home stadium as well what looks to be a fantastic Angels defense behind him.
Wilson may have cost him himself $20 million in free agency with a poor postseason, but he still landed a five-year, $77.5 million deal with the Angels in December. He built upon 2010's successful migration from the bullpen to a solid starter, showing marked improvements in K/9IP and K:BB rates, and should continue to be a solid starter with the move out of Arlington. His composite line on the road the past two seasons (210.2 IP, 158 hits, 187:91 K:BB, 2.56 ERA) suggests that his ratios will improve with half of his starts coming at Angels Stadium.
Wilson's transition from occasionally effective reliever to the starting rotation was a smashing success. He posted a tidy 3.35 ERA and 1.245 WHIP, fanning 170 batters in 204 innings but was also among the league leaders in walks allowed with 93. He held opponents to a .217 average against, a number nearly unsustainable year-over-year, so expect some regression in 2011. He had a few shaky appearances late in the season and tossed another 24.1 innings in the postseason, so there's some concern as to how his arm will hold up following a huge spike in innings (73.2 in 2009, 228.1 in 2010).
Wilson had a surprisingly all-around effective year, showing improved control (84:32 K:BB) in 73.2 innings. He racked up 14 saves with Frank Francisco sidelined at times by injury, but there's been increased talk of moving Wilson back into the rotation when spring begins in an attempt to find another capable starter. His numbers after the All-Star break (35 innings, 30 hits, 52:15 K:BB) reversed a recent trend of declining control. Texas' acquisition of potential lefty specialist Ben Snyder in the Rule 5 draft from the Orioles (via the Giants) could give them the necessary ammunition to return Wilson to the rotation. There are lots of moving parts involved in that scenario however, depending on one of two youngsters (Snyder or Clay Rapada, obtained from the Tigers this winter) to play a prominent role in the bullpen.
Further proof of the "AnyoneCanBeACloser" theory, Wilson amassed 24 saves despite brutal peripherals (49 hits, 27 walks, eight homers, 6.02 ERA, 1.64 WHIP in 46.1 innings). You can point to his late-season elbow struggles and pretend it was the reason for the poor season, but that doesn't explain his pre-Break totals (1.57 WHIP, 5.01 ERA despite 22 saves). As a lefty who doesn't get lefties out, Texas has a bit of a problem just throwing him into a late-inning specialist role, and talks of returning him to the rotation have since died down as well. He's expected to begin the year behind Frank Francisco as Texas' closer, though Francisco's occasional injury woes should be considered if Wilson is going dirt cheap in your auctions.
Wilson managed to pick up 12 saves following the trade of Eric Gagne, but struggled as the season wore on and isn't being looked at as a viable closing candidate in 2008 unless Texas comes up empty on the free agent market and Akinori Otsuka doesn't return to form. He walks too many to be an effective closer over the course of the season, and doesn't post gaudy strikeout numbers to have much value in just a set-up role.
Wilson had a nice year in relief once he got on the field healthy. He excelled against lefties, holding them to a .155 average against and struck out 19 in 20.2 innings. With Ron Mahay returning, it could be another year before Wilson takes over as the shutdown lefty, but he has a future in that role.
Wilson had some effective outings as a long reliever for Texas following a promotion, but not nearly enough, as his 6.94 ERA attests. He's not expected to play a large role out of the Texas bullpen in 2006.
Wilson posted a combined 11-2 record, split between Single-A and Double-A this season, with a pretty suspect K/BB ratio (93 K/53 walks in 136 innings) considering his less than overpowering stuff. He needs to pass the Double-A Litmus Test before we get too excited.
More Fantasy News
Progressing toward possible showcase in February
PFree Agent  
Shoulder
January 6, 2017
Wilson (shoulder) began throwing over a month ago and is progressing toward a possible showcase in February, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reports.
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Needs season-ending surgery
PLos Angeles Angels  
Shoulder
July 5, 2016
Wilson will undergo surgery next week to address fraying on the labrum and rotator cuff in his left shoulder.
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Leaning toward season-ending surgery
PLos Angeles Angels  
Shoulder
July 5, 2016
Wilson (shoulder) is leaning toward undergoing season-ending surgery, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
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PLos Angeles Angels  
Shoulder
June 27, 2016
Wilson is slated for a second opinion on his injured shoulder, Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com reports.
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PLos Angeles Angels  
Shoulder
June 24, 2016
Wilson (shoulder) has not pitched in a game since a May 25 rehab appearance at Inland Empire.
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