New York Yankees Editorial: Should the Yankees Target Jordan Zimmermann


Though the Yankees season officially ended about a month ago, the entire MLB season officially came to a close last night when Ned Yost and the Kansas City Royals won their first World Series Title in 30 years.

Kudos to the New York Mets for putting up one heck of a fight, but despite their best efforts, the Royals were just too relentless. All in all, it was a great World Series, and the most exciting part about the whole thing is that just five day after the culmination of the Baseball Winter Classic, free agency begins!

The free agent signing period will be the official start date for Brian Cashman to attempt to shape the current layout of the New York Yankees into a championship caliber team like the 2015 Kansas City Royals.

One thing the Yankees surely need is starting pitching, but the early indications are that the Yankees won’t be in the running for a cream of the crop $300 MM investments guys like Zack Greinke, David Price or Johnny Cueto.

But perhaps a more realistic option for the Yankees is to target former Washington Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann.

After pitching to a 13-10 record with a 3.66 ERA and 164 strikeouts in 2015, the 29-year old right hander didn’t put himself in the best position to command top-dollar on the free agent market, which means he could potentially be in the Yankees price range.

According to Brooks Baseball, Zimmermann has tossed a combined 16,847 pitches between his MLB debut in 2009 and 2015, including spring training, the MLB regular season and the 2012 and 2014 post seasons. This past season the two-time National League All Star relied primarily on his four-seam fastball (93 mph) and slider (88 mph) while mixing in his 81 mph curve ball. Zimmermann also sports a circle change up (87 mph), but barely used it in 2015.

Both his fastball and slider generate more ground balls than most other pitchers with the same pitch and velocity, which would translate well with the dimensions of Yankee Stadium. His curveball isn’t as devastating as his ex-teammate’s Stephen Strasburg, but it still has a 12-6 movement that fools a lot of opposing hitters. The only flaw in his main arsenal is that his change up doesn’t produce many outs, but according to Brooks Baseball he only threw seven of them in 2015.

Sure, the Washington Nationals will extend a qualifying offer to Zimmermann, but it looks as if Brian Cashman isn’t too concerned with forfeiting a 2016 first-round draft pick for a free agent pitcher. According to sources, the Yankees are expected to pursue Jeff Samardzija this winter as well, who is also expecting to receive a qualifying offer from the Chicago White Sox.

The Yankees are in dire need of a top-of-the-rotation starter to slot behind Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka, and Jordan Zimmermann would provide them with just that. If Cashman can get Zimmermann at the right price on a three or four year deal, he would be a great addition to the future of the New York Yankees.

What do you think Yankee fans? Let us know in the comments below.

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