About Last Night: Nathan Eovaldi and the first inning of doom

[I know, another post on Eovaldi's start? Yes, sorry. There's a lot to talk about. -SG]

So just how bad was last night's game for Nathan Eovaldi and the Yankees? The Marlins had more hits in the first inning (9) than the Yankees did for the entire game (7) and Eovaldi didn't even make it out of the inning. His BABIP for his 2/3 of an inning of work was .818 and he gave up eight earned runs.

Let's jump into the pictures of doom!

Here are those hits in spray chart form (there are two that landed in nearly the same spot so it only looks like eight but there are nine): export (28)

Eovaldi gave up two ground ball hits, two line drives and two fly ball hits. In his last outing against the Nationals (a no decision), he gave up fewer hits overall (8) in seven innings - four line drives, one fly ball and three ground ball hits. And before that, he gave up four hits in 5 1/3 innings on June 5, against the Angels - two line drives, one fly ball and one ground ball. He also threw 93 pitches that outing. (More on that issues later in the post.)

Here are the Marlins' hits are in heat map form: trumedia_baseball_heatmap (79)

The Marlins' made a lot of contact with Eovaldi's pitches: trumedia_baseball_grid (12)

And it wasn't as if one particular pitch type was getting battered more than the others.

  • He gave up three hits on his splitter.
  • Three on his slider.
  • Three on his fastball. (When you're throwing hard - the fastballs that fell for hits were 97-99 mph - but throwing pitches straight and over the plate, balls will be hit.)
  • He gave up five hits to lefty batters and four to righties.
  • Five of the hits he gave up were on the first or second pitch of the at bat.

Derek Dietrich's double was off a 1-1 splitter that didn't split. trumedia_baseball_heatmap (80)

Adeiny Hechavarria's triple was off a first pitch slider that didn't slide enough. trumedia_baseball_heatmap (81)

Here are some zone profiles by batting average and pitch type courtesy of Brooks Baseball.

The Marlins against Eovaldi's slider: BAagainsttheslider

Against the splitter: BAagainstsplitter

And against the fastball: BAagainstthefourseam

Are you seeing what I'm seeing? Only two misses on the fastball. It's also pretty easy to hit the ball when you know where it's going.

These charts shows how Eovaldi's pitch selection broke down last night: Brooksbaseball-Chart (8)

It's obvious he was favoring the hard stuff. He also needs to develop better secondary stuff. Brooksbaseball-Chart (9)

So far this season, Eovaldi has thrown 1,197 pitches in 70 1/3 innings. The only Yankee starter with more pitches thrown is CC Sabathia with 1,202 but he's pitched 77 innings. Eovaldi's problem so far this season is using up his pitches in a shorter amount of time and last night was no exception. He threw 36 pitches in his 2/3 innings of work: 19 four seamers, 9 sliders, 1 curve and 7 splitters.

He got one whiff on his four seamer and none on his slider, curve or split. Brooksbaseball-Chart (10)

To expand on the info above:

  • His fastball produced 16 strikes, 12 swings, one whiff and five balls in play - three for hits.
  • His slider produced six strikes, four swings and three out of three balls fell in for hits.
  • His splitter produced three strikes and three swings - all hits.
  • His fastball averaged 98.7 mph while hitting a max of 100.2.
  • His slider was 86.6 mph with a max of 88.5.
  • His lone curveball was 76.2 mph.
  • His splitter was 87.1 mph with a max of 88.2.

Eovaldi only gave up hits on his four seamer, slider and split. The lone curveball was ball out of the zone. trumedia_baseball_heatmap (82)

So what does all of this mean? It means Eovaldi had a very bad outing last night and that he'll hopefully look at some video, figure out what the heck happened - maybe he was tipping his pitches? - and try not to repeat it the next time his spot in the rotation comes up.

[Charts, heat maps, spray charts and numbers courtesy of ESPN Stats and Info, Fangraphs and Brooks Baseball]