Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Nathan Eovaldi Twitter Poll: My Take

Hello again Yankees family. This morning and for most of the day yesterday we discussed the idea brought forth by a commenter on the blog that suggested moving Nathan Eovaldi to the Yankees bullpen rather than watching him give up home runs like a Little League pitcher in the Yankees starting rotation. I thought the idea and comment was so interesting that I turned it into a Twitter Poll this morning giving you, the fans, your say and your take on the matter. Now it’s my turn. Should the Yankees consider moving Eovaldi to the bullpen giving New York four potential relief pitchers that can throw 100 MPH? Why or why not? 

In a word, no. Not right now anyway so I leave that word with an asterisk. The New York Yankees need starting pitching help much more than they need bullpen help at this particular moment and taking from a weakness to build on a strength doesn’t make sense to a team that states they are in it for the long haul with this team. Sure Eovaldi sucked it up in the month of June, I’m sorry to be so blunt but there’s no better way to say it or sugar coat it, but lest we forget how great he was during the month of May and for much of the second half in 2016. Pitchers go through spells and phases and sometimes they just lose complete control of a pitch and then complete control of their confidence resulting in a snowball effect. We just have to hope Eovaldi is now at the bottom of the hill.  

I am not one to talk up Larry Rothschild like the second coming of Jesus by any means but he has done a lot of good things since being hired as the Yankees pitching coach under Joe Girardi. Look at just recently this season when Michael Pineda was struggling and posting the highest ERA of any starting pitcher who qualified not only in the American League but in all of baseball. It was Larry that made the suggestion to alter the arm angle and slot a bit and the results have been encouraging. Hell, they have been more then encouraging. They have been great and Pineda is back to being the Pineda that Brian Cashman saw all that potential in all those years ago and the Pineda that we all saw the potential in as recently as this spring training. Why couldn’t or won’t Larry do the same the Eovaldi? 

Could the Yankees move Eovaldi to the bullpen eventually? Sure. Not before this current contract is up though. New York has to fix him and they have to fix him now. They have to in order to compete and potentially keep him and extend him and if they don’t compete they have to fix him in order to trade him for a useful piece or two to plug in at a later time. Now if the Yankees extend him and this continues then the option should be on the board, much like it was with Dellin Betances in a totally unrelated situation, to get something out of Eovaldi rather than nothing but we’re not there yet. Not even close. 

So for now Eovaldi is staying in my rotation for better or worse and I stand behind the decision and the potential repercussions that come along with it. It just makes too much baseball sense not to make the move at this time. Shake your magic 8-ball and ask me again later though and I may be singing an entirely different tune. 

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)