Marc Rzepczynski
Marc Rzepczynski
33-Year-Old PitcherRP
Arizona Diamondbacks
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Things fell apart for Rzepczynski in 2018, as the southpaw turned in a career-worst 6.97 ERA and 2.52 WHIP across 10.1 innings with Seattle and Cleveland. He was designated for assignment twice -- by the Mariners in June and the Indians in July -- and ultimately finished out the year on Seattle's farm, struggling to a 9.64 ERA and 2.46 WHIP in 9.1 innings with Triple-A Tacoma. While Rzepczynski posted his best strikeout rate since 2015 (9.6 K/9) -- likely a result of his increased slider usage -- he walked nearly as many batters as he whiffed. The 33-year-old also experienced a noticeable drop in his groundball rate (from 70% in 2017 to 58.3% in 2018), resulting in a career-worst 1.7 HR/9. He'll likely be forced to open 2019 in the minors, and if he does get another look in the majors, it will be as a lefty specialist. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, minor-league contract with the Diamondbacks in February of 2019.
Sent to minor-league camp
PArizona Diamondbacks  AAA
March 24, 2019
Rzepczynski was reassigned to minor-league camp Sunday.
ANALYSIS
The veteran lefty recorded a 2.08 ERA in 8.2 spring innings, but that came with a poor 5:6 K:BB. He's not on the 40-man roster, so he won't necessarily be first in line to get called up when the Diamondbacks need another reliever.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-21%
BAA vs LHP
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
-48%
BAA vs LHP
2017
 
 
-1%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .255 119 27 11 27 7 0 1
Since 2017vs Right .321 75 9 19 18 2 0 3
2019vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018vs Left .258 36 9 5 8 4 0 0
2018vs Right .500 21 2 5 8 1 0 2
2017vs Left .253 83 18 6 19 3 0 1
2017vs Right .250 54 7 14 10 1 0 1
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-26%
ERA on Road
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
-5%
ERA on Road
2017
 
 
-26%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 5.49 2.08 19.2 1 2 1 7.8 9.6 1.8
Since 2017Away 4.09 1.55 22.0 1 1 0 7.8 3.7 0.0
2019Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018Home 7.11 2.37 6.1 0 1 0 9.9 9.9 2.8
2018Away 6.75 2.75 4.0 0 0 0 9.0 6.8 0.0
2017Home 4.73 1.95 13.1 1 1 1 6.8 9.5 1.4
2017Away 3.50 1.28 18.0 1 1 0 7.5 3.0 0.0
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Marc Rzepczynski
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
May 21, 2017
Erik Siegrist looks at the free agent pool in the Junior Circuit and spots a number of veterans nearing returns from the DL, including the Rangers' Adrian Beltre.
Oak's Corner: A Good Weekend for Encarnacion?
May 19, 2017
Scott Jenstad picks the Indians at Astros for his series of the weekend. Could this be the matchup that gets Edwin Encarnacion and the rest of the offense going in the right direction?
Team Previews: AL West
Team Previews: AL West
February 26, 2016
February 26, 2016
Paul Sporer provides in-depth previews for all five teams in the American League West. Can Mike Trout keep the Angels out of the division basement?
Collette Calls: AL Closers in Waiting
February 2, 2016
Jason Collette looks at the stats to break down each American League bullpen to find the likely next man up for each team this season.
Saturday Lineup Card: The Deadline Has Passed
July 31, 2015
Chris Benzine discusses Alex Wilson's new role as the likely closer for the Tigers, plus more in Saturday's lineup card.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
Rzepczynski's numbers took a step back in 2017, as he put up a 4.02 ERA in 31.1 innings, leaving him as exactly a replacement-level player according to fWAR. He generated an exceptional groundball rate (70 percent), which ranked third among all pitchers who threw at least 30 innings, one spot behind Zach Britton and three spots ahead of Dallas Keuchel. His groundball rate needs to remain at a high level for him to be effective, as he doesn't strike out many batters (18.3 percent) and he walks far too many (14.6 percent). As a lefty, Rzepczynski should be able to hang around for a while yet unless the walks take another step back. His value in most traditional fantasy formats remains minimal -- he has just two career saves -- but Rzepczynski did record a career-high 20 holds last year.
A career-best 2.64 ERA in 2016 from Rzepczynski earned him a two-year, $11 million deal with the Mariners. Despite the improved run prevention, some of the veteran left-handed specialist's peripherals and splits actually took a step backwards last season. Rzepczynski walked 23 out of 102 right-handed batters in 2016, easily the worst walk rate in the majors among pitchers with as many innings as him last year. Of course, Rzepczynski is getting paid for his performance against lefties, but he allowed a .674 OPS against them last year compared to his .589 career mark. On the other hand, he benefited from several peripherals from his bad-luck 2015 coming back down to Earth. His .381 BABIP from 2015 lowered to .333, his 53 percent strand rate reached a healthy 79.9 percent and his 25 percent HR/FB cratered to 3.7 percent. The Mariners will slot him in comfortably as their top left-handed option out of the bullpen, but he remains a specialist aimed solely at left-handed batters without fantasy value.
At first glance, Rzepczynski's 2015 season looks like one to forget, but it was really one of his best from a peripherals standpoint. The 30-year-old lefty turned in a career-best 17.1% K-BB%, with his 14.3% swinging-strike rate representing the second-best mark of his career, and his groundball rate shot up to over 67 percent. Unfortunately for Rzepczynski, a quarter of his flyballs left the park, and that was only part of his bad luck. He also had a .381 opponents' BABIP (.310 for career) and a preposterously-low 53 percent strand rate, with his xFIP coming in almost three full runs lower than his ERA. Of course, it was the A's that decided to buy on Rzepcznski, acquiring him in early December to bolster their bullpen depth. A back-end assignment may not be in the cards if Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson are healthy to start the year, but Rzepczysnki should provide much better numbers in the ratio categories in 2016.
Rzepczynski has stabilized as a quality left-handed reliever, and he should remain a part of the late-inning arsenal for manager Terry Francona in 2015. During his first run as a big leaguer last season, Rzepczynski struck out a batter per inning, but he continues to give up a significant number of free passes. Fortunately, he's able to minimize the damage of the walks by getting a lot of outs on the ground (59.7% GB% last season, career 56.6%). While he's garnered more nicknames than the typical LOOGY, Rzepczynski (he prefers “Zep” to “Scrabble” and “Eye Chart”) should remain gainfully employed in the big leagues as long as he continues to dominate left-handed hitters, after he fanned them at a 28.7% rate and held them to a combined .180/.241/.200 line last season.
Rzepczynski spent most of the season with the Cardinals before joining the Indians in a deadline deal in July. He struggled with the Cardinals and spent some time at Triple-A Memphis, but served the Indians well down the stretch (0.89 ERA, 0.84 WHIP, 8.9 K/9 in 20.1 innings) while carving up lefties (.179/.230/.250 in 62 plate appearances overall). He'll be back as one of the team's late-inning southpaws out of the bullpen, as at this stage of his career, the days of being a starter are officially over for Rzepczynski. That's 40 Scrabble points for the curious.
The man they call "Scrabble" has pitched in at least 70 games in both of the last two seasons, but as a LOOGY he's barely surpassed 100 IP during that timeframe. If your league counts holds, note that Rzepcynski had 18 in both 2011 and 2012, but there really isn't anything else to offer from a fantasy standpoint.
Before tiring a bit down the stretch, Rzepczynski pitched pretty well for the champs, but when you take a LOOGY and then suddenly pitch him two or three innings, those are the types of results you might get. He was active in the postseason, including four scoreless appearances in the World Series. It seems likely that new manager Mike Matheny will move him back to shorter appearances again this season. The full-time move to the NL might help, but even with improved rate stats he won't be in a role to help most in traditional roto formats.
Rzepczynski saw his chances to crack the starting rotation out of spring training last season end when a comebacker fractured a finger on his pitching hand, and he got off to a late start as a result. He bounced around Toronto and Triple-A Las Vegas, eventually making a dozen starts for the Jays. He continues to struggle with his control (4.3 BB/9 in 125 big-league innings), and he'll need to iron that out to take the next step forward. He offers some upside in formats that count strikeouts and figures to compete with Kyle Drabek and Jesse Litsch for one of two open spots at the back of the Jays' rotation.
Rzepczynski earned a promotion to Triple-A Las Vegas after a quick start at Double-A New Hampshire (7-5, 2.93 ERA and a league-leading 88 K at the time of his promotion). He was excellent in two starts at Triple-A and found himself thrust into the Toronto rotation in early July. He pitched pretty well for the Jays (3.67 ERA, 1.321 WHIP and 60 K in 61.1 innings) once he arrived. His ultimate success will hinge on his command as he's always struggled with his control. He'll battle for a rotation spot this spring.
More Fantasy News
Joins Arizona on MiLB deal
PArizona Diamondbacks  AAA
February 8, 2019
Rzepczynski agreed to a minor-league contract with the Diamondbacks on Friday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training.
ANALYSIS
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Inks deal with Mariners
PSeattle Mariners  AAA
July 30, 2018
Rzepczynski agreed to a minor-league contract with Seattle on Monday, Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Elects free agency
PFree Agent  AAA
July 20, 2018
Rzepczynski became a free agent after passing through waivers Friday.
ANALYSIS
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Outrighted to minors
PCleveland Indians  AAA
July 19, 2018
The Indians outrighted Rzepczynski to Triple-A Columbus on Wednesday.
ANALYSIS
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Bumped from 40-man roster
PCleveland Indians  AAA
July 11, 2018
Rzepczynski was designated for assignment by the Indians on Wednesday.
ANALYSIS
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