Brewers sign Nelson to 1-year deal; avoid arbitration
Las Vegas, Nevada ~ In what has been a quiet offseason so far for the Milwaukee Brewers, general manager David Stearns and company made a small splash by re signing Jimmy Nelson to a 1 year, $3.7 million deal, avoiding arbitration. After missing all of last season because of a major shoulder surgery, Nelson looks to rebound in 2019.
In the 2017 season, Nelson debuted a new change of delivery and pitch mixing, posting ace-worthy stats. With a bold curveball, slider, four seamer, and and sinker, Nelson was able to put up a 3.49 ERA. Over the course of the season, he struck out 199 batters, while dropping his walk rate to 2.46 BB/K. However during an outstanding start against the Chicago Cubs, while sliding back to first base after a hit, he greatly injured his labrum, rotator cuff, and shoulder capsule. The injury required major surgery, which forced him to miss the whole 2018 season.
He was expected to return around the All Star Break, but progress was halted when doctors realized it wasn’t safe to throw off flat ground, let alone pitch in a major league baseball game. But this offseason, Nelson was able to throw off a mound at fall baseball camp in Maryvale. After seeing his apparent progress, the Brewers listed his rehab program as finished.
Previously pitchers who have suffered this kind of injury have not fared well later in their careers, but with Nelson’s body and repertoire of pitchers, he should be able to pitch successfully. To begin the season, expect Craig Counsell to keep a very close watch on his pitch count, and his first start could only be 60 pitches, depending on his progress in Spring Training. But Nelson will be worked in and should be very effective in an already good rotation.
BY Jacob Szczap