Former Alabama Pitcher Jimmy Nelson Named Top Prospect in Brewers Organization



Nov. 15, 2013

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Former Alabama right-handed pitcher Jimmy Nelson (2008-10) was named as the top prospect for the Milwaukee Brewers by Baseball America on Friday. Nelson, who made his Major League Baseball debut near the end of the 2013 season, will look to continue his baseball career with the Brewers for the 2014 season.

In 2013, Nelson started the season at Double-A Huntsville where he made 12 starts, posting a 5-4 record with a 2.74 ERA with 72 strikeouts in 69 innings pitched. After a mid-season call up to Triple-A Nashville, Nelson made 15 starts, posting a 5-6 record with a 3.67 ERA in 83 innings, where he recorded 91 strikeouts.

His minor league performance earned him a spot on the September call-ups and he took advantage of the opportunity, making four appearances with one start for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2013. He had a 0-0 record with a 0.90 ERA in 10 innings pitched. He allowed just two hits to hold opponents to a .065 batting average, while striking out eight with five walks. Nelson was a second round draft pick of the Brewers following the 2010 season.

Here is what Baseball America has to say about Jimmy Nelson
Scouting Report: Nelson can overpower hitters at times with a fastball that sits at 92-94 mph but also reaches 96 when he needs it. He is very aggressive, going after hitters with hard stuff that also includes an effective two-seamer in the low 90s with good sink and movement that he uses to induce groundouts. Nelson also can be very tough on right-handed hitters with his three-quarters arm slot and power slider, which has a sharp break and registers in the 84-86 mph range. He limited righties to a .213/.295/.290 batting line and three home runs over 370 plate appearances at three levels, including 0-for-15 in his brief big league trial. He continues to work on a changeup that is improving and will be key to remaining a starter going forward. Nelson has a great build for a pitcher, maintaining the quality of his stuff deep into games. When he is throwing strikes he mows through lineups, but on other days Nelson fights his delivery and walks hitters, creating doubt about his future role. He tends to overthrow and loses his release point, resulting in an average of 4.1 walks per nine innings for his minor league career, too many for a frontline starter. He also needs to polish his defense and ability to hold runners.

The Future: Nelson likely will have to return to Nashville to open the 2014 season but could force his way into the big league picture with a strong spring. While some scouts think his iffy command will consign him to the bullpen, the Brewers see a potential No. 2 or 3 starter who misses barrels and eats innings. He appears destined for regular spot in the Milwaukee rotation before the year is done.

2013 Club (Class)    W-L   ERA    G-GS   CG   SV   IP   H   HR   BB   SO   AVG
Huntsville (AA)      5-4   2.74  12-12    1    0   69  63    5   15   72  .241
Nashville (AAA)      5-6   3.67  15-15    1    0   83  74    2   50   91  .240
Milwaukee (ML)       0-0   0.90   4-1     0    0   10   2    0    5    8  .065

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