Tagged: Nathan Eovaldi

The inconsistent Nathan Eovaldi has officially been released by the Yankees

Nathan Eovaldi

Nate Eovaldi – Lo Hud Yankees Blog

On Monday, the Yankees officially announced that the injured Nate Eovaldi has been released from the team. He had been designated for assignment on November 20.

The Yankees traded for the flame-throwing righty on December 14, 2014. They traded infielder/outfielder Martin Prado and pitcher David Phelps to the Miami Marlins for Eovaldi, Garrett Jones and Domingo German.

In the 2014 season with the Marlins, he had a mediocre 4.37 ERA and his 223 hits allowed were the most in the National League. However, the Yankees traded for him because he set career highs with 32 games started and 199.2 innings pitched and his average fastball velocity was the second fastest in the National League.

He showed positives and some negatives during his two seasons with the Yankees but didn’t show enough improvement in his secondary pitches to make the Yankees want to keep him while he recovers from Tommy John surgery.

On August 16 of this season it was announced that he would miss the rest of the 2016 seasons and likely all of the 2017 season due to a torn flexor tendon and partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. The Yankees announced that he had undergone his second Tommy John surgery a few days later.

In the 2015 season, he led all MLB starting pitchers with an average fastball velocity of 96.6 MPH. His velocity didn’t lead to much more success than he had in 2014. His ERA of 4.20 was better than the 4.37 he had the previous season but his 1.45 WHIP was worse than his 1.33 WHIP from his last season with the Marlins. His fastball averaged 97.1 in the games that he appeared in this season.

In 2015, he missed the month of September because of elbow inflammation and the month of August raised his ERA and WHIP as he allowed three runs or more in four of his last five starts and allowed five hits or more in three of those five starts. That performance in August was disappointing because in nine starts between June 20 and August 7 he allowed two runs or less seven times while giving up two walks or less in six of those starts. He showed how dominant he can be during that stretch when he locates his pitches and throws his secondary pitches where he wants them to go.

Eovaldi was able to develop a split-fingered fastball with the help of Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild, which helped him improve during that nine start stretch and for periods of the 2016 season. In addition to the splitter, according go Brooks Baseball, he relied on his fourseam fastball (98), slider (87) and cutter (94). He rarely mixed in his curve ball.

Eovaldi entered the 2016 campaign fully healthy but allowed five and four runs in each of his first two starts. He allowed three and zero runs in his last two games in April and his next two months alternated between pitching well overall and not deserving to be in the rotation.

In May, he opened the month by allowing six runs in five innings on 10 hits against the Red Sox but pitched well the rest of the month as he allowed two runs or less in four of his next five starts. However he wasn’t able to continue that momentum into July and his first start in August.

The 26-year-old Houston native, who grew up in the same town as Nolan Ryan, gave up a combined 31 earned runs in 30.1 innings in six starts, which caused the Yankees to move him to the bullpen. It is not acceptable for a starting pitcher to allow four runs or more in six straight starts, which included five or more in five of those starts.

He would go on to make eight more appearances with the Yankees before his season ended. Eovaldi made three appearances out of the bullpen after his awful start on August 1 and combined to pitch 7.2 innings while allowing three hits and striking out four. The bullpen is where he might make sense after he recovers from Tommy John surgery since has some trouble with his non fastball and slider pitches.

In his first start after returning to the rotation he performed well as he limited the Baltimore Orioles to one run in 5.1 innings but was progressively worse in his next three starts. He allowed two, three and four runs in his last three starts and in his final start, against the crosstown rival Mets, he gave up four runs on five hits (two homers) and two walks.

It’s unfortunate that he was not able to truly pitch well for a consistent amount of games while with the Yankees because his velocity is elite and he has solid secondary pitches when everything is going well. The splitter that he developed did help but it would not have made sense for the Yankees to keep him while he recovered from Tommy John surgery during all of the 2017 season.

Another reason that he would make sense for the bullpen is that a pitcher with his fastball velocity should be able to have more strikeouts than he does, and it is possible that concentrating on two pitches will help lead to more strikeouts. He will be most remembered for lighting up the scoreboard with 100 plus mph pitches, his very good month of May this season and his very good month of July plus last season.


Nathan Eovaldi’s dominant 6.2 innings helped the Yankees win the series against the Giants


The Yankees beat the San Francisco Giants on Sunday afternoon , 5-2, and were able to win the series against the  NL West leaders two games to one. After losing the first two games of their series to the Red Sox, the Yankees were impressively able to end the home stand with six wins in their last eight games against the Baltimore Orioles and Giants.

Pitching has been a key factor in the Yankees playing well against Orioles and Giants, as they have posted an outstanding 1.56 team ERA in the last eight games.     Nathan Eovaldi pitched well once again as he only allowed two runs in 6.2 innings while allowing seven hits and striking out six.

He threw 79 of his season-high 118 pitches for strikes and since being demoted to the bullpen for three appearances he has allowed only three runs in his last 12 innings (two starts). After dominating in his last two starts with an improved cutter, Eovaldi has lowered his ERA from 5.11 to 4.80.

Eovaldi really pitched well in the clutch as he held the Giants to 0-5 with runners in scoring position in the first six innings. Eovaldi left the game to a standing ovation after Angel Pagan’s double put runners on second and third with two outs.

Buster Posey hit a single to right off of Chad Green, who came into pitch after Chasen Shreve allowed a walk, that scored former Yankee Ramiro Pena and Angel Pagan. Those two runs were charged to Eovaldi because they were on base when Green came into the game.

Green really stepped up for the Yankees with Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman not available due to the amount that they had pitched recently. Green, who is normally a starting pitcher, picked up his first career save. He allowed three hits and one strikeout in 2.1 innings pitched and threw 28 of his 40 pitches for strikes.

Green is performing well in his new bullpen role since he hasn’t allowed a run in his last two appearances as a relief pitcher (4.2 innings). He could serve an important role in the new look bullpen because the flame-throwing Chapman is close to getting traded to the Chicago Cubs.

On offense, the crowd came alive for the two early solo homers that the Yankees hit. Carlos Beltran hit his 413th homer of his career in the first inning. The likely future Hall of Famer is now one homer away from tying Darrell Evans for 51st place on the all-time list. In the second inning, Mark Teixeira, who has a low .188 average but has hit four of his nine homers in July, hit a deep 425 foot homer to right center. Beltran is only 10 homers ahead of Teixeira as the first baseman hit his 403rd homer of his career.

The Yankees will tack on three more runs in the sixth inning to seal the win. Aaron Hicks scored on a double play and then the Yankees went on a two out rally. Starlin Castro’s single scored Beltran and then Didi Gregorius, who has really improved on offense this season, smashed a ground rule double that bounced off the warning track in center to score Brian McCann.

After Sunday afternoon’s win, the Yankees are now 7.5 games behind the Orioles for first place in the AL East and a little more manageable 4.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays fore the second wild card spot. It appears that the Yankees will see how they perform in the next week or so before deciding if they will trade other players besides Chapman.






The Yankees beat the Royals on Thursday for their second consecutive series win

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Chase Headley – ESPN

The Yankees defeated the Kansas City Royals, 7-3, on Thursday night in the Bronx. That victory gave them the series win over the defending World Series champions and their second consecutive series win.

The Bronx Bombers, who are now starting to earn their nickname again, have won six of their last nine games to pull within five games of .500 (14-19). Their winning percentage has been equal to or worse than five games below .500 everyday since April 27 when they were 8-12.

Offensively the Yankees scored six runs or more for the fourth time in their last six games. They had previously scored three runs or less in five of six games. The Yankees are becoming a good team and the Yankees were able to have production from the bottom of the lineup in this game, which teams need to have in order to win consistently.

Chase Headley was 2-3 with two runs scored, two RBIs and his first home run of the season. His homer in the second inning that drove in Carlos Beltran was his first extra-base hit of the season as well. Noah Syndergaard, who is a starting pitcher, had two homers for the Mets on Wednesday.

“It’s been a long time,” Headley said. “Felt like it’s been a really long time.” Headley finished 5th in the National League MVP voting in 2012 after his .286, 31 homer, 115 RBI season, so he is obviously capable of producing power numbers.

The Yankees need Headley, who was hitting 8th in the lineup, to continue his turnaround at the plate as he is 7-20 (.350 average) with five runs scored, one homer and four RBIs in his last six games. This improved play in the last week has increased his average from .151 to .194. Headley’s work in the cage after games recently is now showing on the field. He also made a Gold Glove caliber play to end the game on a ball that took a bad hop.

Didi Gregorius, who was hitting 7th Thursday night, was the second of three Yankees to hit a round tripper. Gregorius’s homer was his only hit of the game, but it was important as it gave the team two more insurance runs in the 4th after the Royals had made the score 3-2. His homer to deep right off of former Yankee Ian Kennedy over the WB Mason sign was off of a hanging curve ball.

It is always a positive when four of the team’s seven runs are driven in by the seven and eight hitters in the lineup.

Starlin Castro, whose .300 average is higher than any everyday player on the team, went 2-4 with two RBIs. He hit his fourth homer of the season in the first inning and singled to right in the seventh to score Headley. Castro is by far the best second baseman that the Yankees have had since Robinson Cano left to go to the Seattle Mariners after the 2013 season. Brian McCann gave the Yankees their seventh run on a bases loaded walk in the 7th, which was his team-leading 16th run batted in.

Nathan Eovaldi (3-2) did not pitch nearly as well as he did in his previous start when he allowed only two runs in eight innings, but he was able to keep the team in the game without having his best command of his pitches. The Royals scored three runs off of him in five innings off of eight hits and two walks.

The Yankees were leading 3-0 going into the 4th but then Alex Gordon hit a homer to deep right center and Christian Colon hit an RBI double to make the score 3-2. Eovaldi nearly finished the fifth inning without allowing a run but Eric Hosmer hit a double with two strikes and two outs. However, he was able to pitch will with two outs and a runner in scoring position since after Gordon’s RBI single he got Salvador Perez to fly out to right to end the inning.

Four Yankee relievers combined to pitch the sixth, seven, eighth and ninth innings and they combined to only allow one hit.

Kirby Yates, who pitched the sixth inning, has somewhat gone under the radar since he has not allowed a run in his last seven innings (7 games) and has struck out eight batters and lowered his ERA from 5.06 to 2.19. The 29-year-old Hawaii native, who is in his third season, is having much more success than he did last season for the Tampa Bay Rays when he had a 7.97 ERA and 1.48 WHIP in 20.1 innings. He will be a valuable pitcher before Girardi gets to his Big Three of Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman.

The duo of Betances and Miller combined to pitch the 7th and 8th innings and not allow a hit and strikeout two batters. Miller has an outstanding 0.66 ERA and the only run he has given up this year was a solo homer in the second game of the series against the Royals.

The Yankees had a 7-3 lead in the ninth so they were able to save Chapman for the opening game of the series against the first place Chicago White Sox on Friday night. Chicago is somewhat surprisingly 23-12 and five games ahead of the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central. The Yankees, who need to win their third consecutive series, could be facing the White Sox at the right time as they have lost their last two games.


The Yankees lost to the Royals on Wednesday as Pineda struggled in the 1st inning again


Aaron Hicks – MLB

The Yankees (13-19) lost to the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium. Michael Pineda allowed six runs in 5.2 innings pitched, but he allowed four of his six runs in the first inning. This continued his trend of struggling early in the contest but then rebounding. He needs to find consistency, so that he is a reliable pitcher in the beginning of the game.

He has really struggled in the first two innings this season as 20 of the 27 earned runs that he has allowed this season have come in the first two frames. He has been a completely different pitcher after the second frame, but his inability to prevent runners from scoring in the first two stanzas has led to him having a very high ERA of 6.28, a WHIP of 1.60 to go along with hitters having a .306 average against him in his seven starts.

After Alex Gordon’s sacrifice fly scored Lorenzo Cain, Salvador Perez would go onto smash a three-run homer to left that gave the Royals their fourth run of the first inning. That homer by Perez ended up being the difference in the game. Pineda has struggled with the long ball this year as his nine homers given up are tied for the fourth most in the American League.

Pineda has allowed a solid two earned runs in four of his seven starts, but that is not good enough because in his other three starts he has given up six, seven and six runs, respectively. He is obviously not injured based on the way he has pitched after the second inning, but he just needs a different mindset so that he doesn’t have starts where he allows four runs in the first inning.

With Wednesday night’s loss, the Yankees now have a 5-3 record in the last eight games. They are starting to turn the season around because in their previous eight games they had a record of 1-7. A factor in the team winning more games in the last eight contests is that they have scored 38 runs in that span versus only 17 runs in the stretch when they went 1-7.

A positive development during this stretch of improved offense has been the play of Aaron Hicks, who was traded to the Yankees in the offseason. He has gotten consistent at-bats since he has been playing everyday in the outfield as a result of Carlos Beltran being the DH with Alex Rodriguez on the disabled list. Hicks was 3-4 on Wednesday night, and in the last seven games he is an impressive 9-21 (.429) with one double, two homers, five RBIs and five runs scored. His average was .067 on May 4 and is now a much more respectable .216.

Beltran, who was 2-4 last night with a solo home run, has hit well during the month of May. He is 10-36 (.278) with three homers, four doubles, five runs scored and six RBIs. There have been 10 of the team’s 32 games during May, and three of his seven homers have come during May in addition to six of his 15 RBIs.

Beltran also hit his 399th career homer last night, which puts him in a three-way tie for 54th on the all-time list with Al Kaline and Andres Galarraga. Three Yankees are in the top five on the all-time switch hitter home run list as Mark Teixeira has 397, Beltran has 399 and Chipper Jones retired with 468, Eddie Murray retired with 504 and Mickey Mantle retired with 536.

Chase Headley had a single to shallow left in the second inning to score Hicks for his only hit of the game. He has a very low .178 average this season, but the third baseman has a .278 average (5-18) in the last seven days to show some signs of improvement. However, Headley still does not have an extra base hit this season and has only four RBIs. Proving how Headley has not done his part as an everyday player is that 26 pitchers have an extra base hit this season while Headley does not have one.

The Yankees will play the series finale against the Royals tonight at 7:05 p.m. They will win the series if they win tonight’s game that will be started by Nathan Eovaldi (4.78 ERA). In Eovaldi’s previous start, he dominated in eight innings as he allowed two runs and struck out six.

Joe Girardi has said that the goal is to win consecutive series that they play, and the Yankees should be able to get back into the race in the American League East if they can win the next five series that they play. They went into this series having won their previous two.


Eovaldi’s most complete start of the season helped the Yankees beat the Red Sox 8-2

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Nathan Eovaldi – ESPN 

The Yankees beat the Boston Red Sox, 8-2, at Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon for their second consecutive win against their rivals to the north. The Yankees (11-17), who have now won three of their last four games, will have their first three-game winning streak since the first week of September if they can beat the Red Sox tonight on Sunday Night Baseball.

The Yankees are still six games below .500, but it is a positive sign that they have had four consecutive quality starts and the offense is scoring more runs than earlier in the season. The offense has scored seven or more runs twice in their last four games after previously only doing so once in 20 games.

Nathan Eovaldi dominated against the Red Sox offense on Saturday afternoon, which helped save the bullpen and defeat David Price. He threw eight innings, which is a season-high, and gave a season-low zero walks. He also allowed six hits, only two earned runs and struck out six batters. He lowered his ERA from 5.36 to 4.78 and rebounded well from his previous start when he allowed 10 hits, six runs and three walks in five innings pitched.

Before his meltdown in his last start against the Red Sox on May 1, he had progressively improved in every start this season. In order he had allowed five, four, three and then zero earned runs. He showed what he is capable of during Saturday’s start and he just needs to consistently not walk batters, limit his homers and combine his overpowering fastball (99mph) with his improved splitter, slider and curve.

Joe Girardi will need Eovaldi to be consistent because CC Sabathia, who threw seven shutout innings on May 4, was put on the 15-day disabled list with a left groin strain on May 6. Eovaldi has the ability to be a No. 2 caliber starter but he along with Michael Pineda just need to learn to not get sidetracked to adversity during the game.

On offense, the bottom third of the Yankees order won the game for the team as the trio of Chase Headley, Didi Gregorius and Austin Romine scored three runs and drove in five. Headley, who has not hit a home run yet this season and has been one of the worst players on offense in the league, had his first multi-hit game since April 19 and crossed home plate for the first time since April 12.

Headley went 2-4, which improved his average from .151 to .169, and scored his third and fourth runs of the season. The Yankees hope that this is a sign of his improving at the plate and of him hitting more like he did at the end of August last season when he had one or more hits in 12 of 14 games.

Austin Romine, who has an impressive .348 average this year as the back-up catcher, smashed a double to right center in the third that scored Headley, for one of this three hits. He also hit a double in the eighth to drive in Headley for the team’s eighth run of the contest. Romine has to this point greatly improved his hitting at the plate compared to previous seasons.

Didi Gregorius’s double in the fourth that scored Starlin Castro, Mark Teixeira and Dustin Ackley made the score 4-1 and gave the Yankees all the runs that they would need to defeat Boston. A positive sign from Gregorius was that his double was his first extra base hit since he slugged a homer on April 20 against the Oakland Athletics.

Carlos Beltran had a two RBI double in the fifth and Aaron Hicks had a sacrifice fly in the sixth to give the Yankees their three other runs.

Hicks is also gradually starting to improve offensively since he has one hit in each of the last three games after previously starting his season with two hits in his first 30 at-bats. His increased playing time in the outfield due to Alex Rodriguez being on the disabled list could lead to more production.

The Yankees will look to sweep the Red Sox tonight on Mother’s Day and get some revenge for when the Red Sox swept them last week at Fenway Park. If the Yankees win and the Orioles lose today, the Yankees could only be 4.5 games out of first place, which isn’t that bad considering the start that they have had.


Alex Rodriguez’s 30th homer was not enough as the Yankees lost to the Orioles 2-1

Alex Rodriguez.

Alex Rodriguez.

The Yankees lost to the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 on Tuesday night in a game that Masahiro Tanaka only allowed one run in eight innings pitched.

The score was 1-1 going into the ninth inning but reliever Chasen Shreve, who had a 1.86 ERA coming into the game and had not given up a run in his previous seven games, allowed the game-winning homer to Chris Davis, who now has 41 homers and 102 RBIs.

“It looked like it was a pitch that he left out over the zone,” Joe Girardi said. Girardi said that Shreve has been a big part of the team’s success this season.

Toronto’s 5-1 win over Red Sox in 10 innings combined with the Yankees loss pushed the Blue Jays lead in the AL East back to 1.5 games. The Yankees, who were tied with Toronto in the loss column and half a game behind overall, struggled on offense and that prevented them from keeping pace with Toronto in the division.

Tanaka, who had a season-high 10 strikeouts, had a perfect game through three innings and should have been able to win his 12th game of the season. He pitched well the few times that runners were in scoring position as J.J. Hardy popped up to 2nd with runners on first and third to end the fifth and he got Hardy to ground out to Didi Gregorius after Matt Wieters had doubled in the seventh.

The only mistake that Tanaka made was a pitch that Ryan Flaherty hit for a home run to right field in the sixth inning. That was Flaherty’s eighth round tripper of the season.

The Yankees only had six hits but one of them was Alex Rodriguez’s 30th homer of the campaign. Rodriguez, who has hit for more power than anyone could have predicted in spring training, hit his homer off of a Kevin Gausman fastball to the first row above the Budweiser sign in left field. A-Rod is now the only player besides Hank Aaron with 15 seasons with 30 or more home runs.

The Yankees were 0-3 with runners in scoring position and left seven runners on base. Brian McCann, who has 25 homers and leads the team with 86 RBIs, struck out swinging with runners on first and second with two outs in the fifth inning. Greg Bird, who has shown impressive power in his 23 games since being called up from Triple-A as he has five homers and 17 RBIs, ended the team’s scoring threat in the first with a strikeout with runners on first and second.

Zach Britton retired the side in order in the ninth inning, which included a Chase Headley ground out to end the game. A few players are in a slump right now as Stephen Drew, who was hitting very well, has three hits in his last 17 at-bats, Carlos Beltran has four hits in his last 22 at-bats and Jacoby Ellsbury has only four hits in his last 20 at-bats. The Yankees will need them to improve tonight and in their upcoming series against the Blue Jays.

The Yankees will try to win the series against the Orioles, who have lost seven of their last 10 games, with CC Sabathia pitching. Sabathia, who had been on the disabled list with a knee injury, has allowed two runs or less in two of his last three starts, which is not including the one that he only threw 2.2 innings after having to leave the game with an injured knee.

The Yankees will need Sabathia to give them length and effectiveness because Nathan Eovaldi has been shutdown for two weeks with elbow inflammation, which means he might not pitch again this season. His elbow injury might have caused Eovaldi to allow eight runs and 13 hits over 10.1 innings in his last two starts.

Wednesday’s game is at 7:05 p.m. and Ubaldo Jimenez, who has a 4.24 ERA this season, will get the start for the Orioles.

Nathan Eovaldi’s ineffectiveness led to the Rays beating the Yankees on Saturday afternoon

Nathan Eovaldi.

Nathan Eovaldi.

The Yankees lost the middle game of their series against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium by the score of 3-2. This was a crushing loss since they had many chances as they were 0-5 with runners in scoring position and the loss combined with the Toronto Blue Jays win over the Baltimore Orioles pushed the Yankees deficit in the AL East back down to 1.5 games.

Nathan Eovaldi, who lost his first game since June 16 and is now 14-3, allowed three runs on five hits and four walks in 5.1 innings pitched. It was his second consecutive start that he struggled with his command and effectiveness since in his previous start he allowed five runs in five innings pitched, but was able to get the win because the Yankees had scored eight runs when he left the game.

John Jaso hit a single to right off of Eovaldi to leadoff the game and he continued to struggle as eight of the first 15 batters that he faced reached base. He was able to get Evan Longoria to hit into a double play to end the first, but the second and third innings were his downfall.

In the second inning, Kevin Kiermaier, who is more known for his defense, singled to right to score Logan Forsythe, who had doubled earlier in the inning. In the third inning, Eovaldi couldn’t locate his pitches at all as he allowed a walk, a hit by pitch and then another walk to Grady Sizemore to load the bases. Asdrubal Cabrera hit a single to right to score Daniel Nava and Longoria to give the Rays their third run of the game. He would retire seven of the next nine batters that he faced, but had to leave the game after 5.1 innings because he had thrown 102 pitches (seven strikeouts).

“I didn’t have good command of my fastball and my splitter was inconsistent,” Eovaldi said. The splitter is the pitch that has transformed Eovaldi into a more complete and at times dominant starter this season, and he will have to throw it with more consistency in his next start.

“He struggled with his command a little bit,” Joe Girardi said in reference to Eovaldi. “It’s part of the game. Even though he struggled, he made big pitches when he had to. We have got to bounce back tomorrow. That is the bottom line.”

Matt Moore, who had an 8.78 ERA in his six starts this season coming into the game, allowed two runs on three hits and two walks in his 4.2 innings. In the fifth inning, Didi Gregorius hit a double to deep center to score John Ryan Murphy who showed his speed as he was able to score all the way from first base. Murphy is likely the fastest back-up catcher in baseball. Later in the fifth inning, Brett Gardner’s ground out to the shortstop scored Gregorius.

The Yankees had the bases loaded in the eighth inning after pinch hitter Brian McCann walked with two outs, but Gregorius hit a hard line drive to the second baseman. The Yankees had the hitter they wanted at the plate since in his last eight games Gregorius has 15 hits in his last 29 at-bats (.517) with eight runs scored, two homers and 11 RBIs, but he unfortunately hit it right to Forsythe.

Four pitchers from the Rays bullpen combined to pitch 4.1 scoreless innings while only allowing two hits. That was another reason that Tampa Bay won the game.

The Yankees would have won the game if they had more success with runners in scoring position and if they left fewer than nine runners on base. Gardner, Alex Rodriguez and Carlos Beltran, who were the No. 1, No. 3 and No. 4 hitters in the lineup, combined to go 1-12 with three strikeouts. The offense didn’t homer and the team is now 11-25 this season when not hitting a round tripper.

An opportunity that the team should have taken advantage of was missed on Saturday because the Yankees will now face the challenging Chris Archer in the series finale at 1:05 p.m. Archer is one of the best starters in the league as he has an impressive 2.78 ERA with a 1.04 WHIP and 223 strikeouts. He didn’t allow an earned run in six innings in his previous start, and in six starts against the Yankees between the 2012 and 2014 seasons he had a 1.93 ERA.

The Yankees will have to hope that Archer is not able to command his pitches like he normally does. Ivan Nova, who allowed three runs in six innings in his last start, has a 4.50 ERA in 12 starts this season. He needs to locate his sinker, curve and four-seam fastball better than he has in his previous two starts.