Like we have said many times this month, Spring Training is all about ironing out details and getting the body right. The Dodgers’ most recent acquisition Jimmy Nelson will have to work on both of those things. After pitching a bullpen session on Wednesday, Nelson came out with lower-body discomfort.
Jimmy Nelson came out of yesterday’s bullpen session with lower body discomfort and is shut down. He had been nursing groin and lower back issues.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) February 27, 2020
Nelson was signed to a one-year deal worth $1.25m guaranteed. He could earn up to $13.25m across two seasons with incentive bonuses and a club option for 2021. The Dodgers are dealing with a lot of aches and pains already, so Nelson’s discomfort further exasperates that.
The 30-year-old right-hander suffered a freak injury back in 2017 that kept him out until 2019. Nelson dove back into first on a pickoff attempt in September 2017 and tore his rotator cuff as well as his labrum.
He allowed 17 earned runs across 22 innings of work for the Brewers last year, but the Dodgers felt his relief work stood out. Nelson pitched to a 3.60 ERA with an elevated strikeout rate with limited innings out of the bullpen.
The possible addition of Yadier Alvarez paired with the fact they have to make a decision about him by Opening Day hurts Nelson. If they wanted to keep both, the Dodgers could opt to move Nelson to the 60-day injured list and keep Alvarez in the process to keep stretching him out. Only time will tell.