Brandon Finnegan

Brandon Finnegan

29-Year-Old PitcherP
Chicago White Sox AAA
2023 Fantasy Outlook
There was no outlook written for Brandon Finnegan in 2023. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
$Signed a one-year, minor-league contract with the White Sox in March of 2022.
Heads to minor-league camp
PChicago White Sox  AAA
March 29, 2022
The White Sox reassigned Finnegan to minor-league camp Tuesday.
ANALYSIS
Though he won't turn 29 years old until April and has 260.2 career MLB innings under his belt, Finnegan doesn't look especially close to earning his way back to the big leagues. The lefty hasn't pitched in the majors since 2018, and he's coming off a rocky campaign in the Reds organization at Triple-A Louisville, where he produced a 5.53 ERA and 1.71 WHIP in 55.1 innings. After being developed as a starter, Finnegan appears to be a full-time reliever at this stage of his career, but the role change didn't pay any dividends last year. He joined the White Sox on a minor-league deal over the winter and will hope that the organizational change will help him rediscover the form that once made him an intriguing prospect in the Kansas City system.
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Brandon Finnegan
Mound Musings: NL Central Draft Day Targets
February 28, 2019
The National League Central is on tap for Brad Johnson this week, and, in Chicago, the Cubs’ pitching success will likely revolve around Yu Darvish’s health.
Mound Musings: A Tale of Two Rotations
September 13, 2018
Brad Johnson looks at recommendations he made heading into the season to see how they’ve panned out, good or bad, featuring Red Sox star pitcher Chris Sale.
The Z Files: NL Rotation Overview
July 5, 2018
Todd Zola concludes his tour of big-league depth charts with a look at rotations in the National League, including a more charitable view of the Rockies' recent demotion of Jon Gray.
Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Strasburg's Doing his Thing
May 5, 2018
Todd Zola ranks the coming week's starting pitchers as Washington's Stephen Strasburg has two starts to keep doing his thing.
DraftKings MLB: Monday Picks
April 30, 2018
Chris Olson recommends checking out Reds first baseman Joey Votto at home against the Brewers on Monday.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
This player will receive an outlook for the 2021 fantasy baseball season.
Acquired by Cincinnati in 2015 as part of the Johnny Cueto trade, Finnegan suffered through a disastrous 2018 campaign and looked nearly as bad in attempting to bounce back last season. The southpaw lost his spot on the 40-man roster in late March, went unclaimed on waivers, then posted a 6.60 ERA in 15 innings with Double-A Chattanooga. He didn't pitch competitively at all until the end of July, instead working with a third party on his mechanics and strengthening in hopes of regaining the form that made him a first-round draft pick in 2014. Finnegan did post a healthy 10.2 K/9 in his limited time last season, but there's little chance of a return to the majors unless he's able to tame his considerable command issues that have resulted in an ugly 5.7 BB/9 across all levels since 2017. Whether the Reds -- or any other team -- are willing to invest time in him moving forward is anybody's guess.
Finnegan is yet another data point demonstrating how difficult it is for pitchers to recover from shoulder injuries. Ever since he first got sidelined with what was initially disclosed as minor shoulder soreness early in 2017, Finnegan hasn't provided much cause for optimism. While 2017 was a lost season, 2018 was worse -- simply a disaster both with the Reds and at Triple-A Louisville, where he was ultimately transitioned to relief work. Finnegan's average fastball was down 2.1 mph from 2017 in his brief time with the Reds. Watch his outings in spring training. If he starts working in the 93-95 mph range, there still could be reason for hope. If it's down in the 89-91 mph area, Finnegan probably won't even go north with the big club.
Finnegan's first start of 2017 was a gem -- he threw seven shutout innings against the Phillies, striking out nine while allowing just one walk and one hit. Alas, that was the lone highlight from his season. In his next start against the Pirates, he had to get bailed out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam by Michael Lorenzen in the third inning, somehow allowing just one run on four hits and five walks. His next start was worse and he subsequently went on the DL with a shoulder problem. He made one more attempt to pitch in June and needed another trip to the DL afterward. Left in Finnegan's wake was the need to find 30 starts from a parade of starters that the Reds ran through, with predictable poor results. When healthy, Finnegan has one of the best sinkers in the game along with a plus changeup and slider, but right now he's a pitcher coming off of two shoulder strains in the prime of his development.
Finnegan took an asymmetrical path toward being in a big league rotation, first rocketing through the Royals' system as a reliever after being drafted in the first round in 2014. He didn't begin his career as a starter until mid-2015, and not in earnest until after he joined the Reds in the Johnny Cueto deal. Over the first half of the season he took his lumps, with a few good starts mixed in, but he really turned it on over the second half, posting a 2.47 ERA after the All-Star break. The key to Finnegan's surge was refining his changeup after talking to teammate Dan Straily. He then threw it more often (up to 20 percent over the end of the season), making his fastball that much more effective. Like teammate Anthony DeSclafani, he doesn't quite profile as an ace or even as a No. 2 starter, but he's looking like a solid mid-rotation starter that will net owners decent ratios and strikeouts.
Finnegan raced his way through the minors and into the major league bullpen, but it seemed that Kansas City was still looking at him as a future starter. That transition was expedited when he went to Cincinnati via the Johnny Cueto trade and was plugged into their all-rookie rotation at the end of the season. He was lit up for three home runs at St. Louis, but that was his only blip in four starts (all on the road), and even in that game he fanned seven in five innings. Finnegan showed three pitches as a starter, amplifying his changeup usage to 12 percent, and only lost a half mile per hour off of his fastball (92.5 mph average). He gets whiffs with all three offerings and cut his walks substantially while starting (3.0 BB/9, compared to 5.0 as a Reds minor leaguer). The Reds will give him a real chance at starting and even if it doesn’t all come together immediately, he should at least be a strikeout asset.
Finnegan rose quickly through the Kansas City farm system in 2014 after being drafted 17th overall in June, and showed enough promise for manager Ned Yost to be comfortable using the 21-year-old in high-leverage playoff situations down the stretch. He pitched well in those pressure-filled scenarios, though allowing five runs in his ultimate appearance left a black mark on his final stat line. The potential is certainly there, however, as Finnegan has solid command of a mid-90s fastball, in addition to both a slider and changeup. He displayed the ability to strike hitters out in the majors, fanning 14 batters in 13 innings during the regular season and playoffs. If those secondary pitches continue to develop as hoped, Finnegan could work his way into the back end of the rotation, but he can always use a fastball-slider combo in the bullpen as a fallback option. He won't have much fantasy value working in the bullpen behind Greg Holland, Wade Davis and Kelvin Herrera, but a starting role could make him an intriguing sleeper heading into 2015.
More Fantasy News
Signs with White Sox
PChicago White Sox  AAA
March 14, 2022
Finnegan signed a minor-league contract with the White Sox on Monday that includes an invite to major-league spring training.
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Reassigned to minor-league camp
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
March 26, 2021
Finnegan was reassigned to the Reds' minor-league camp on Friday.
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Moves to big-league camp
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
March 12, 2021
Finnegan was officially invited to big-league camp Friday.
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Invited to early minor-league camp
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
February 14, 2021
Finnegan is one of 18 minor leaguers invited to the team's early minor-league camp, C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic reports.
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Added to player pool
PCincinnati Reds  AAA
August 7, 2020
Finnegan was added to the Reds' 60-man player pool Friday.
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