Zimmermann Receives Cards Double-A Invite

Former Southwest Missouri State pitcher Bob Zimmermann to join the Double-A Springfield Cardinals in spring training.

St. Louis Cardinals farm director Jeff Luhnow has extended an invitation to former Southwest Missouri State pitcher Bob Zimmermann to join the Double-A Springfield Cardinals in their spring training camp in Jupiter, Florida. Luhnow told the Springfield News-Leader that he hopes the 26-year-old righthander may regain the form displayed during his first couple of years in the minors and in college.

After becoming their career saves leader, Zimmermann converted to starting and helped pitch SW Missouri State into their first-ever College World Series appearance in 2003. The St. Louis native became a fourth-round pick of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the 2003 amateur draft after having been taken by, but not signing with the Colorado Rockies in the 14th round in 2000.

Zimmermann returned to closing and logged 46 saves in the Angels' minor league system from 2003 through 2006 and ranked among their top 30 prospects in 2004, 2005 and 2006. He was a Midwest League All-Star in 2004 pitched in the Angels' major league spring camp in 2005 and again in 2006 before missing a month that season due to shoulder stiffness.

Zimmermann had been left unprotected in the December, 2005 and 2006 Rule 5 drafts and went unselected. In 2007, after being dropped by the Halos in spring training the 6-foot-5, 245 pounder moved on to Trenton (Yankees – Double-A) and Modesto (Rockies – A-Advanced), playing for three organizations last year.

Zimmermann originally sported a low-to-mid nineties fastball with sink but has reportedly lost some velocity. He creates deception by deploying varying arm angles from three-quarters to sidearm in his delivery. Zimmermann has struggled with his control in the past.

Last season, Zimmermann posted a 0-0 record, 7.53 ERA in 13 relief appearances, giving up 14 hits, 14 runs (12 earned), one home run, 19 walks and a .250 opponent batting average while striking out 11 over 14.1 innings. Over his professional career, Zimmermann owns a 4.05 ERA, having fanned 218, but walked 110 in 235.1 innings pitched.

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