Baltimore Orioles: The Performance Displayed by Ubaldo Jimenez is No Surprise


After a sluggish 2014 campaign, Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez has bounced back in a big way here in 2015. It is pretty amazing how a guy can lower his ERA from 4.81 to 2.41 in just five months. However, this is not the first time that we have seen Jimenez display such puzzling performances.

In the first three full years of his career, he did not finish with an ERA better than 3.45 in any of those seasons. In his fourth season, he recorded an ERA of 2.88, while going 19-8, striking out 214 and finishing second in the National League in Cy Young award voting.

He then struggled mightily over the course of the next two seasons, ending both the 2011 and 2012 seasons with ERA’s lower than 4.60. However, he bounced back in 2013 with the Cleveland Indians, pitching terrifically down the stretch and recording the second-best ERA of his career (3.30) while winning 13 games.

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The terrific campaign in 2013 came at a perfect time for Jimenez, as he was playing in his contract year. Off the heels of that performance, the Orioles signed him to a four-year, $50-million deal in February of 2014. In his first year with the O’s, he most certainly did not live up to his contract.

He started 22 games, pitching to an ERA of 4.81, which is the second-worst single-season total in his career. It’s not like the Orioles haven’t signed a player to a contract only to be disappointed by their performance in the past, but this one everyone saw coming from the start.

But what do you know? So far here in 2015, he has pitched absolutely fantastically. He is on pace to finish the year with a career-best ERA, as it currently stands at 2.41. He has also struck out 32 batters in only six starts, which is seventh-best in the American League.

The pattern that Ubaldo Jimenez has put together throughout his career is quite curious, but at least for this season, he should be good to go. He clearly possesses great stuff, as he has shown that in the seasons in which he has succeeded.

However, he can get a bit wild at times, which has led to his downfall. As for the Orioles, they are happy to have the good Ubaldo on board this season, and he could take them a long way.

Next: Ubaldo Jimenez - Ace of the Staff

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