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5/25/1982 (34 y, 9 m, 2 d)
2000 June Amateur Draft - Round: 12, Pick: 2, Overall: 342, Team: Minnesota Twins
$16M / 2 Years (2012 - 2013) + 1 Option Years
$2M / 1 Years (2014)
Kubel hasn't officially retired, but isn't actively seeking a contract, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. (2/25/2015)
Jenrry Mejia & Jason Kubel: Deep League Waiver Wir»
Karl de Vries (RotoGraphs)
American League Tiered Outfield Rankings — April 2»
David Wiers (RotoGraphs)
Jason Kubel Meets The Face Of The Earth
Michael Barr (RotoGraphs)
Daily Fantasy Strategy – 9/8 – For Draftstreet
Blake Murphy (RotoGraphs)
Classifying the Last Trades of August
Jeff Sullivan (FanGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
Year in Review:
Kubel had the best year at the plate, with career highs in average, runs, RBI, and homers, as well as wOBA (.383, after a previous best of .345). The increase in performance was the result of hitting the lowest rate of ground balls in his career (38.7% of balls in play) and the highest rate of homers on his fly balls (16.3%). At the same time, his BABIP increased even though he hit such a high rate of fly balls (which typically produce a lower BAIBP). That helped him hit .300 in a full season for the first time in his career. Hitting in the middle of a good Twins lineup, he accumulated more than 100 RBI, also a career first.
The Year Ahead:
The question for Kubel is how many of his 2009 gains were real, and thus how much do we expect him to regress to his previously established level. For Kubel, now a 27-year-old, it is not unreasonable to expect some of the increase in power to represent a real shift in true talent and project 20-25 homers in 2010. His average, on the other hand, should be closer to his previous level (around .275) than the .300 he posted in 2009. His RBI and run totals should regress back from his 2008 totals, since so many Twins had career years in '09. Even though he is young, you should expect some regression with Kubel, so don’t be the person who pays for him while expecting a repeat of a career year. In a 12-team league, he is probably just a fourth outfielder. (Dave Allen)
When viewed in the context of his entire career, 2009 now looks like a pretty big outlier. After an age 27 spike, Kubel went right back to being the same player he had been before – a decent but flawed hitter who should be strictly platooned and probably never play the field. The problem is that the Twins don’t view him this way, and have miscast him as a regular outfielder. However, with Justin Morneau potentially returning from his concussion and with Jim Thome back in Minnesota expecting to serve as the Designated Hitter with some regularity, Kubel may be squeezed out of an everyday job and into the part-time role he’s better suited for. If this scenario holds, his rate stats will improve even as his counting stats take a hit from the reduced playing time. I’d expect a bump in batting average, but he probably won’t be good for more than 20 home runs, so bid accordingly. (Dave Cameron)
The Quick Opinion:
He'll offer some occasional power, but you can probably do better with a guy who will play more often or offer a better package as a part-time guy.
Jason Kubel's fantasy value took a hit when he signed with the Diamondbacks. Right now it looks like he sharing time in the outfield with Gerardo Parra. How the playing time situation works out will be key for his fantasy value. In Minnesota, he was a model of consistency with 20+ homers, a .270 average and zero stolen bases most years. The hitter friendly park in Arizona would have been ideal to help his stats, if he is playing every day. The other key to his value is where in the D-Back's lineup he will be hitting. Expect him to be in the fifth or sixth spot, so RBI will be harder to come by than in Minnesota. Stay away from him on draft/auction day until his role is more defined. He has the chance to put up some great numbers with regular playing time, or only get 300 plate appearances. A good method to value him is to rate his stats to 450 PAs and draft/bid accordingly. Might be a good fifth outfielder in leagues of that type. (Jeff Zimmerman)
The Quick Opinion:
With a new home in Arizona, Jason's fantasy value is still up in the air because of his unknown role with the team.
Like so many American Leaguers before him, Jason Kubel seemed on his way to being a bench player before reviving his career with a move to a hitter-friendly National League park (cf. Hill, Aaron). Kubel was a decent designated hitter and comedy outfielder for the Twins until they moved from the Metrodome to the lavishly taxpayer-funded Target Field, after which he was pretty much useless. Then the Diamondbacks signed him as a an outfielder. The desert air agreed with Kubel, as he responded with one of the best offensive seasons of his career, including a career-high 30 home runs. He was still somewhere between bad and horrific in the outfield, where he had to play full-time, but that didn't hurt his bat. Once you adjust for the difference in parks, he was not a ton better with the bat in 2012 than in 2011, but that doesn't matter to most fantasy leagues. Kubel is going to be an un-athletic 31-year old, and his power outbreak from 2012 is unlikely to repeat itself fully in 2013. Still, he should retain some of it, and his walk rate did bounce back after reaching a low in 2011. Of more concern is the huge jump in strikeouts due to a big drop in contact, which could be a sign of dropping bat speed. The Diamondbacks' signing of Cody Ross also makes the the playing time situation in Arizona confusing, too, with Kubel, Ross, and Gerardo Parra all battling for time. Kubel is still worth drafting in most leagues if he is slated to start, but exercise caution, and do not bid expecting a repeat of 2013. (Matt Klaassen)
The Quick Opinion:
Like most players, Kubel found Arizona's home park to be congenial to his power stroke. However, given his age and contact issues, do not expect a repeat of 2012, and watch the playing time and depth chart situation in Arizona, too.
It's entirely unclear what the circumstances were that contributed to Jason Kubel's performance this past season -- but the result was unmitigated disaster for fantasy owners. After signing a two-year contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2012, Kubel posted his first 30 home run season, slashing .253/.327/.506 while driving in 90 runs. While most projection systems saw a moderate drop in expectations for 2013, nobody thought that Kubel's stock would drop so far that he'd be dumped in a trade to a different team, and subsequently designated for assignment. But that's what happened, and it's a bit of a head-scratcher as to why. But the end result from 2013 was an unseemly .216/.293/.317 line with just five home runs over 290 plate appearances. There's potential here for a dead cat bounce as Kubel is just 31 and he's really had just the one stinker since being a regular in 2007. Perhaps he'll feel right at home coming back to the Twins on a minor league deal, but as such, there's no guarantee of regular at bats. If he does make the big league roster, he's likely to split time in the outfield, DH, and maybe spell some guy named Joe at first base on occasion. I might think about a last round coin flip on him just in case lightning strikes. But don't go hanging any hats on him. (
The Quick Opinion:
Jason Kubel had a nightmare of a season in 2013. He's probably going to be lucky to find a platoon role at best, but he might fall into 400 plate appearances. If he can find the swing that made him a pretty nice third or fourth outfielder, he could be worth a look. But after a season in which he produced a .267 wOBA, I'm probably letting someone else burn that roster spot.
Kubel's reunion tour with the Twins got off to a good start, as the former top prospect slashed .288/.360/.425 in April. The 29.2% strikeout rate should have been a harbinger however, and the rest of his Twins tenure was a disaster. From May 1 on, Kubel hit just .158, with no extra-base hits and 33 strikeouts in 87 plate appearances before the Twins mercifully designated him for assignment. Kubel opted for free agency, and free agency willingly obliged. At 32, Kubel is essentially done. (Brandon Warne)
The Quick Opinion:
Kubel is coaching his kids and isn't seeking employment in Major League Baseball as a player. Major League Baseball was not available for comment.
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Updated: Sunday, February 26, 2017 3:34 AM ET
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