Jordan Zimmermann's slight semblance of fantasy relevance took another hit in 2017, as the veteran hurler turned in a career-worst 6.08 ERA over 160 innings. His exorbitant ERA was the worst mark in the majors among starting pitchers who threw at least 150 innings. Three years removed from an All-Star campaign in which he posted a 2.66 ERA and 22.8 strikeout rate, Zimmermann looked like a shell of his former self this past season. Though he still had decent zip on his fastball (roughly 93 mph average velocity), the 31-year-old saw his strikeout rate fall to a career-low 14.5 percent and he was squared up for a career-worst 1.63 HR/9. Zimmermann is a rapidly declining asset but is still owed a hefty $74 million over the final three years of his contract. While he'll likely be counted upon to eat up innings in 2018 for the rebuilding Tigers, he can be left off your fantasy radar as it seems Zimmermann's best days are long behind him.
Zimmermann will start for the Tigers on Opening Day against the Pirates, Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports. This comes as a bit of a surprise, as Zimmermann is coming off a career-worst campaign that saw him struggle to a 6.08 ERA, 1.55 WHIP and 103:44 K:BB across 160 innings of work. Still, new manager Ron Gardenhire is set to go with the veteran in the season opener, with Michael Fulmer likely following him.
Zimmermann went five scoreless innings in Tuesday's Grapefruit League tie with the Yankees. He gave up two hits and struck out four. Zimmermann had allowed six earned runs in six innings across his last two starts, so this was a nice rebound effort. The veteran righty now has a 4.15 spring ERA, which comes after posting a 6.08 ERA in 2017. He'll need to string together a few starts like this one to begin the regular season if he wants to get back on the fantasy radar.
Zimmermann went 3.1 innings in Thursday's Grapefruit League loss to the Pirates, giving up three runs but also striking out five. Zimmermann was victimized by the long ball early, as Starling Marte and David Freese each went deep in the first inning to account for all the runs allowed by the 31-year-old. Zimmermann settled down after that, and the five strikeouts were nice to see. The veteran righty has seen his ERA climb each of the last three seasons, ballooning to 6.08 in 2017, so expectations are fairly low heading into 2018.
Zimmermann (back) will take the mound against the Blue Jays on Saturday in a Grapefruit League contest. It's expected that the right-hander will go an inning or two during Saturday's outing just a month after receiving a precautionary nerve block injection in his neck. It doesn't seem like there should be much concern for Zimmermann's status moving forward, though this outing will be a good test to make sure he's fully up to speed.
Zimmermann (back) is scheduled to start Saturday's Grapefruit League game against the Blue Jays, Evan Woodbery of MLive.com reports. Zimmermann is only expected to toss an inning or two in the outing, but the fact that he's set to pitch in a game with spring training barely underway suggests the Tigers harbor no concerns about the health of his back, for which he required a nerve-block injection a few weeks earlier. While the right-hander's place in the Tigers' starting rotation looks secure, his 5.60 ERA (4.88 FIP), 1.48 WHIP and 5.73 K/9 rate over his first two seasons in Detroit make him someone to avoid in most mixed formats.