Brewers Jimmy Nelson Done for Year: Fantasy impact
The Brewers will be without starting pitcher Jimmy Nelson for the rest of the season. What does that mean for fantasy baseball owners?
It’s been a while since we’ve written about a pitching injury. Who am I kidding? There was just one Friday night. The most recent one is Brewers No. 1 pitcher Jimmy Nelson being ruled out for the season. For a widely-owned pitcher, this injury has a big fantasy impact.
Nelson will be shut down for the final weeks of the season as he was diagnosed with a right rotator cuff strain and a partial anterior labrum tear. While it is a significant injury, there is no timetable for a return. Todd Rosiak, Brewers beat writer for the Milwaukee Sentinal Journal, among others, tweeted that surgery is unknown. If he does have surgery, his status for Opening Day could be put into question.
Nelson was having the best season of his career. He pitched in 175.1 innings, just four short of his career high from last year. Nelson has a 3.49 ERA, 1.249 WHIP and 12-6 record. The ratios and win-loss record were way above what his numbers were in 2016.
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He also improved his strikeout and walk rates. Nelson had a 7.0 K/9 and 4.3 BB/9 last season and a 10.2 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 this year. He was one strikeout away from 200 for the season. He allowed fewer home runs as well, 16 compared to 25.
The Brewers trail the NL Central-leading Cubs by four games and are three games back of the Rockies for the National League’s second Wild Card spot. Not having Nelson atop the rotation will make the playoff hunt tougher.
Adam McCalvy, the Brewers beat writer for MLB.com, tweeted that the injury was a surprise because Nelson showed limited pain and he even pitched an inning with a labrum tear. Nelson suffered the injury on the base paths after hitting a fifth-inning single. Save the “NL needs the DH” argument.
Nelson was owned in 86.4 percent of ESPN leagues. Trying to find a viable replacement at this point in the season is going to be tough.
Though, there are some pitchers with good splits over the last 30 days. Two are White Sox pitchers Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez. A third includes Doug Fister. All three are owned in less than 50 percent of leagues.
The Brewers have options to replace Nelson. Taylor Jungmann and Double-A righty Aaron Wilkerson are two in-house options.
As for next year, Nelson could be a late-round pick if the news comes back negative.