25 years old
5th major league season
6'1" 200 pounds
Bats R/Throws R
The Mets face 25-year old Jair Jurrjens tonight in the second game of the doubleheader. Jair Jurrjens was one of the most consistent pitchers in baseball in 2009, and finished with a 2.60 ERA, as a result of giving up three runs or less in 26 of his 34 starts (and never more than five runs), and a 1.23 WHIP. When most Braves fans were expecting him to improve on those good numbers, I predicted last year when the Mets faced him in April he would regress, and expected a 3.8-3.9 ERA in 2010. Well no one could've predicted the cascade of injuries that hit him (shoulder pain in spring training, followed by a hamstring strain which cost him 56 games, and knee surgery ended his season September 14th). That limited Jurrjens to 20 starts (116 1/3 innings), and he finished with a 4.64 ERA and 1.41 WHIP. What changed to account for the 1.84 ERA difference from 2009 and 2010? His K/9, BB/9 and ground ball rate stayed essentially the same. His 2009 BAPIP was incredibly low (.268), and it regressed back to the mean in 2010 (.300).
He has a smooth, easily repeatable delivery, with a 3/4 arm slot. He knows how to pitch, and adds/subtracts on his fastball depending on the situation. He throws his fastball 63% of the time (averaged 91 mph). He also throws a decent slider (80 mph), and a change-up (83 mph). He's been hurt by hitters getting extra base hits on his slider and change-up. He used to be a ground ball pitcher (52% in 2008), but that has slowly reversed, and he is now a fly-ball pitcher (40% gb%).
He has below average K/9 (6.7), and average swing and miss % (8.9%). His walk rate is also league average (3.2 BB/9).
Jurrjens is making his first major league start today for 2011 after missing time in spring training with an oblique injury. In his rehab start in AAA, he went 6 innings, gave up 2 runs on 4 hits, with 3 strikeouts and 2 walks.
In 2009, the righty faced the Mets 5 times, and went 4-0 with a 1.60 ERA. Last year he only made 2 starts against the Mets, and was 1-1 with a 4.38 ERA and 1.62 WHIP (10 walks in the 12 1/3 innings).