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5/12/1987 (29 y, 9 m, 9 d)
2008 June Amateur Draft - Round: 1s, Pick: 9, Overall: 39, Team: St. Louis Cardinals
$22M / 3 Years (2015 - 2017)
Lynn (elbow) threw a live bullpen session on Monday, Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. (2/20/2017)
The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 425 – House of C»
Paul Sporer (RotoGraphs)
Early ADP Thoughts – Starting Pitcher, Part II
Paul Sporer (RotoGraphs)
Lance Lynn has Mastered the Multi-sided Fastball
Jeff Sullivan (FanGraphs)
MASH Report (6/15/15)
Jeff Zimmerman (RotoGraphs)
Lance Lynn as the Next Max Scherzer
Craig Edwards (FanGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
Lynn may have been a starter all through the minors, but the Cardinals currently have five existing starters and Lynn acquitted himself well as a reliever during the end of the 2011 season. With the crowd at the end of the starting rotation, it's most likely that Lynn remains in the bullpen, where he should compile a decent number of strikeouts and holds behind Jason Motte. (Dan Wade)
The right-hander was the 32nd-best fantasy starter last season. Lynn struck out 24.2% of the batters he faced and won 18 games thanks to a potent Cardinals offense, yet St. Louis may break camp with him in the bullpen. This is largely due to his platoon split that sees lefties tag him for a .366 wOBA, while he handcuffs righties with a .273 wOBA against. The Cardinals have depth in their rotation and might like Lynn as a set-up man for Jason Motte if they deem Shelby Miller ready and Jaime Garcia healthy. If St. Louis slots Lynn in the rotation, he should provide strikeouts and wins while hurting in WHIP, and if he begins the season in the bullpen, his value only extends to leagues that feature holds. (JP Breen)
The Quick Opinion:
Lance Lynn enjoyed a breakout season -- providing more fantasy value than Adam Wainwright, Ian Kennedy, and Mark Buehrle in 2012 -- but his uncertain role heading into 2013 clouds his overall fantasy outlook.
Lynn posted his first 200-inning campaign, and was essentially the same guy as he had been in 2012 when he tallied just 176 innings. In fact, he was a touch better, as his 90 FIP- bested his 92 FIP- in '12. Unfortunately for Lynn, that wasn't reflected in his ERA, and it may cost him a spot in the starting rotation. The Cardinals rotation is quite deep, and with Jaime Garcia, Michael Wacha, Carlos Martinez and Joe Kelly ready to go in addition to Lynn, Adam Wainwright and Shelby Miller, St. Louis has seven capable starting pitchers, and that's not even counting Trevor Rosenthal. There's a chance that as a result, Lynn could find himself back in the bullpen, even though he is two years removed from active bullpen duty. And while he still isn't great against left-handed hitters, he was a lot better against them in 2013 than he was in 2012. He drastically cut his walk and home run rate against left-handed batters, and that led to a reduction in his FIP against lefties down to 4.21. It may not be sustainable, but it's good to see that progress nonetheless. Unfortunately, until Lynn's role becomes clear, it will be hard to know how quickly to draft him. If he is shifted to the bullpen, it's unlikely that Lynn would usurp either Rosenthal or Jason Motte for the closers role. In other words, Lynn could go from being one of the 35 best starting pitchers to being completely worthless from a fantasy perspective. Tread lightly.
The Quick Opinion:
If Lynn could face a lineup of all right-handed hitters in every single outing, he would be the game's best pitcher. Unfortunately for him, a lot of hitters bat left-handed, so Lynn will have to settle for being just a pretty good pitcher. He remains a good value, and at this stage might be a touch underrated. The only question with Lynn is whether or not he will retain his rotation spot, as St. Louis is stuffed to the gills with talented starting pitching, and Lynn has achieved past success in a relief role.
The knock on Lance Lynn prior to 2014 was that he didn’t retire left-handed batters consistently enough in his first two seasons as a starter to be, basically, more than a league-average rotation piece. He silenced many critics by holding opposite-handed hitters to a .243/.325/.372 slash line last season. He did so by ditching, for the most part, an ineffective changeup and pairing his two-seam fastball – similar break, harder than the deprecated pitch – more often with his less frequently used curveball. That suckered those lefties into ground balls a bit more often. The approach gives him two distinctly different weapons – in terms of both break and speed – for batters who previously tormented him. Lynn may have sacrificed a few strikeouts to get here, but there should be no complaints with the overall results, and he still struck out more than 20% of the men he faced. The big question: Will he hold on to all those gains? He was probably still a bit fortunate in terms of average on balls in play against him, especially if opponents can adjust, so maybe split the difference. If people buy at Lynn’s 2014 earnings, pass, but if they think 2014 was all luck, then there’s still a chance to profit. (Nicholas Minnix)
The Quick Opinion:
Lynn finally seemed to figure out how to get left-handed batters out in 2014 – and it wasn’t all luck. But maybe a little luck. So if the crowd believes, then he’s too pricey, but if they're heavy doubters, then he could still be a good purchase.
Lance Lynn entered 2015 as a solid durable, middle-of-the-rotation starter. After two years of only so-so ERAs that underperformed his FIP in 2012 and 2013, the opposite occurred in 2014 and his 2.74 ERA along with more than 180 strikeouts for the third straight year pointed to a bit more. His relatively high walk numbers meant that he was not going to be stellar at preventing base-runners, but he started 2015 on fire, with nearly 11 strikeouts per nine innings, just under 3 walks per nine, a 2.96 ERA and a 2.33 FIP signalling a potential breakout. Unfortunately, it would not last. Lynn went on the disabled list for a bit with forearm tightness, and when he came back, he toughed out the rest of the season, but was not the same pitcher. He ended the season with an ERA around three and nearly a strikeout per inning, but he totaled just 175.1 innings, and the Cardinals elected not to use him in the playoff rotation. After the season, he revealed he been pitching in pain most of the season and underwent Tommy John surgery. He is expected to be back for the start of 2017. (Craig Edwards)
The Quick Opinion:
Lance Lynn will be out for all 2016 recovering from Tommy John surgery. If you want any production from him in 2016, you will be disappointed.
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Updated: Monday, February 20, 2017 11:40 AM ET
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