New York Yankees Editorial: Split Finger Fastball Taking Nathan Eovaldi to ‘Another Level”


When the New York Yankees went out and acquired Nathan Eovaldi from the Miami Marlins this winter they completely looked past the fact that Eovaldi was 15-35 over the course of his young career. They even ignored the fact that Eovaldi gave up a combined 223 hits in 199.2 innings pitched when he went 6-14 in 2014 with the Miami Marlins.

Instead, the Yankees looked at Eovaldi as a 25-year old flame throwing right-hander who can be turned into a serviceable arm with help from pitching coach Larry Rothschild.

Twenty starts into his Yankees career, Eovaldi sits at 10-2 with a 4.27 ERA.

What’s the secret behind his success?

A fully developed split finger fastball.

"“It has taken his game to another level,’’ catcher Brian McCann said of Eovaldi’s splitter when he spoke to George King III of the New York Post.. “It gets hitters off the fastball and has turned into an above-average pitch.”"

According to King, the adjustment on Eovaldi’s splitter was made after his horrific start on June 16th in  Miami, in which he lasted just .2 innings after giving up a whopping eight runs in a 12-2 loss to his former team. Since than, Eovaldi is 5-0 in seven games started, and has developed into a force in the back-end of the Yankees rotation.

"“What makes it even better is that he throws it to both sides [of the plate],’’ veteran CC Sabathia said of Eovaldi’s splitter."

When the Yanks shipped out the versatile Martin Prado and the homegrown David Phelps in order to acquire Eovaldi’s services, Yankee fans went into a frenzy. Prado would still be the best second baseman on this roster, and David Phelps was a fan favorite just because he came up through the Yankees farm system.

However, that was a time when Eovaldi was a career 20 games under .500 and had a fastball with little-to-no-movement.

Now, as the calendar turns to August and the Yankees are gearing up for a playoff push, it looks as if Brian Cashman found another diamond in the rough, making the Eovaldi trade a complete steal.

Keep in mind we are yet to see what Domingo German (the other pitcher the Yankees acquired from the Marlins in the swap) can develop into.

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