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Jeff Samardzija
Birthdate: 1/23/1985 (32 y, 2 m, 2 d)     Bats/Throws: R/R     Height/Weight: 6-6/220     Position: P
Drafted: 2006 June Amateur Draft - Round: 5, Pick: 13, Overall: 149, Team: Chicago Cubs
Contract: $90M / 5 Years (2016 - 2020)
RotoWire News: Samardzija threw four scoreless innings Friday, striking out three and walking none in a win over the Rockies. (3/25/2017)
Profiles:  2012  2013  2014  2015  2016  2017  (Click Year to Expand / Close)
Profile: Samardzija really had nowhere to go but up in 2016. He was leaving a hitter-friendly park in the American League for arguably the most pitcher-friendly venue in the National League. He cut over a run off of his ERA, but even that sharp of an improvement felt underwhelming for those who still had his 2014 fresh in their mind. After five seasons in the rotation, it looks like ’14 was the outlier and something around ’16 is where expectations should lie with Shark. That 2014 season has been the only one where Samardzija was above average at shutting down lefties (.662 OPS). His 2016 mark of .780 was right in line with .762 over his career. The biggest difference between success and failure versus lefties is the fastball and splitter leaving the yard, whether season-to-season or even within 2016. Through his first 22 starts of the season, they hit six homers off the two pitches in 131 plate appearances. Over his final 10 starts, it was just two in 110. There is a modicum of upside if Samardzija can consistently stifle lefties; if not, he’s a quality middle of the rotation innings-eater in all formats. (Paul Sporer)

The Quick Opinion: Don’t buy Samardzija with any expectation of his 2014 heights returning. He has a path to improvement that could yield a season better than 2016, but pay for 200 solid innings and take anything better as pure profit.

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