The Orioles today announced that they have signed right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez to a four-year contract. Jimenez, 30, is 82-75 with a 3.92 ERA (1275.2IP, 556ER) in 212 career games (211 starts) with Colorado and Cleveland.
Among pitchers with at least 1,000 innings pitched since 2008, Jimenez ranks 6th in all of baseball with 0.7 HR/9.0 IP, tied for 7th with 195 starts, and 8th with a 1.57 GB/FB ratio, 61.1 ground ball percentage, and 8.35 K/9.0 IP. In that time, Jimenez is one of 10 pitchers to have made 31 or more starts in each season.
In 2013, Jimenez went 13-9 with a 3.30 ERA (182.2IP, 67ER) and ranked among the top 10 in the American League in K/9.0IP (4th, 9.56, a new career-high), average against with RISP (6th, .205; 31-for-151), slugging percentage against (8th, .367), road ERA (8th, 2.95), strikeouts (9th, 194) and ERA (10th, 3.30). He was named AL Pitcher of the Month for September, his 3rd career award and first since May 2010, after going 4-0 with 1.09 ERA (41.0IP, 5ER, 7BB, 51K) in six starts in the season’s final month, helping Cleveland advance to the postseason. Jimenez allowed three earned runs or fewer in each of his final 13 starts to end the season, posting a 1.82 ERA (84.0IP, 17ER, 27BB, 100K) in 12 starts after the All-Star break. His second half ERA was the 2nd-lowest in MLB (Kershaw, LAD, 1.59).
The National League’s starting pitcher in the 2010 All-Star Game, Jimenez finished 3rd in the NL Cy Young balloting that season after going 19-8 with a 2.88 ERA with four complete games. He has posted a 3.54 post-season ERA (28.0IP, 11ER) in five total starts for Colorado in 2007 and 2009. In 2009, Jimenez set a World Baseball Classic record, striking out 10 batters in his lone start (4.0 scoreless IP), March 10 vs. the Netherlands.
Originally signed by Colorado as an amateur free agent, April 25, 2001, he was acquired by Cleveland in exchange for four players, July 30, 2011. Jimenez will wear uniform #31.
To make room for Jimenez on the 40-man roster, right-hander Liam Hendriks has been designated for assignment.
Note: The Orioles will hold a press conference to introduce Jimenez tomorrow, Thursday, February 20, at 9:30 a.m. The press conference will be carried live on MASN HD.