|Boston Red Sox – No. 17|
|Born: February 13, 1990|
|August 6, 2011, for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
|MLB statistics |
(through June 14, 2021)
|Earned run average||4.23|
|Career highlights and awards|
Nathan Edward Eovaldi (// ev-AL-dee; born February 13, 1990) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Boston Red Sox of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played in MLB for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Marlins, New York Yankees, and Tampa Bay Rays.
Eovaldi attended Alvin High School in Alvin, Texas, where he played for the school's baseball team. Eovaldi had Tommy John surgery to repair the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow during his junior year of high school. In 2008, Eovaldi's senior year, he was an honorable mention on Texas' All-State team. He committed to attend Texas A&M University on a college baseball scholarship.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers selected Eovaldi in the 11th round of the 2008 MLB Draft. His draft stock had fallen because of his first Tommy John surgery. Eovaldi signed with the Dodgers, receiving a $250,000 signing bonus, forgoing his commitment to Texas A&M. He made his way through the Dodgers' farm system, pitching for the Gulf Coast Dodgers of the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League in 2008 and the Great Lakes Loons of the Class A Midwest League in 2009. In 2010, with the Inland Empire 66ers of San Bernardino of the Class A-Advanced California League, Eovaldi was selected to the mid-season California League all-star team. Eovaldi was promoted to the Chattanooga Lookouts of the Class AA Southern League in 2011 and was selected to the mid-season all-star game. He had a 6–5 win–loss record with a 2.62 earned run average (ERA) for the Lookouts, where he started 19 games. He was also selected to the post-season All-Star team.
Eovaldi was called up to the majors for the first time on August 6, 2011, and was the starting pitcher that night against the Arizona Diamondbacks. In the game, he picked up the win, while pitching five innings, allowing only two runs while striking out seven. He also hit a single in his first major league at bat and scored a run. His seven strikeouts were tied for fourth in Dodgers' history for a major league debut and he was only the fourth Dodger pitcher to score a run in his debut since 1960. Eovaldi became the first Dodger starter since Danny McDevitt in the 1957 season to start his career with four games of five innings or more while allowing two runs or less. He made 6 starts for the Dodgers and was then moved to the bullpen in order to keep his innings down for the season. He pitched in four games out of the bullpen late in the season. His 2011 totals included a 1–2 record and 3.63 ERA.
After beginning the 2012 season with Chattanooga, Eovaldi made his first appearance of the season for the Dodgers on May 29 when he started against the Milwaukee Brewers. He had four strikeouts, allowed 4 hits and 2 runs through 7 innings in a 1–2 loss. In 10 starts with the Dodgers, he had a 1–6 record with a 4.15 ERA.
On July 25, 2012, Eovaldi was traded, along with minor league pitcher Scott McGough, to the Miami Marlins for Hanley Ramírez and Randy Choate. In his first game with the Marlins, he got the win vs the San Diego Padres on July 28. He started 12 games for the Marlins in 2012, with a 3–7 record and 4.43 ERA. He finished the season with a 4–13 record in 22 games with a 4.30 ERA, a 1.51 walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP) ratio, 47 walks, and 78 strikeouts in 119+1⁄3 innings pitched.
In 2013, Eovaldi had a 4–6 record with a 3.39 ERA and 78 strikeouts in 18 starts.
New York Yankees
Eovaldi made his first start for the Yankees on April 10, 2015, against the Boston Red Sox, where he pitched 5+1⁄3 innings, allowing two runs on eight hits. He was credited with a no decision as the Yankees lost to the Red Sox, 6–5 in 19 innings. Eovaldi developed a split-finger fastball, which led to improved results. From June 20 through August 24, Eovaldi pitched to an 8–0 record with a 2.93 ERA. In September, Eovaldi experienced elbow inflammation, ending his regular season. For the 2015 Yankees, Eovaldi went 14–3 with a 4.20 ERA, pitching 154+1⁄3 innings in 27 starts. Eovaldi was prepared to pitch in the ALDS, but the Yankees were eliminated in the Wild Card Game.
On August 16, 2016, it was announced that Eovaldi would miss the remainder of the 2016 season due to a torn flexor tendon and partially-torn ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching (right) elbow. Several days later, the Yankees announced that Eovaldi had undergone his second Tommy John surgery. With the 2016 Yankees, Eovaldi made 24 appearances (21 starts), registering a 9–8 record with 4.76 ERA in 124+2⁄3 innings pitched. He was expected to miss the 2017 season, after which he would have become eligible for free agency. On November 23, the Yankees released Eovaldi.
Tampa Bay Rays
On February 14, 2017, Eovaldi signed a one-year, $2 million contract with the Tampa Bay Rays; the contract included a $2 million club option for the 2018 season. Eovaldi missed the entire 2017 season due to recovery from his prior elbow surgery. The Rays exercised the option going into the 2018 season.
On March 28, 2018, it was revealed that Eovaldi was diagnosed with "loose bodies" in his elbow, and was ruled out indefinitely. On May 30, almost a year and a half since his last start, Eovaldi pitched against the Oakland Athletics, throwing six no-hit innings before being taken out due to pitch count considerations. With the 2018 Rays, Eovaldi made 10 appearances (all starts) with a 4.26 ERA and 3–4 record, while recording 53 strikeouts and eight walks in 57 innings pitched.
Boston Red Sox
On July 25, 2018, the Rays traded Eovaldi to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Jalen Beeks. Eovaldi made his Red Sox debut on July 29, going seven innings without giving up a run, as the Red Sox defeated the Minnesota Twins 3–0. With the 2018 Red Sox, Eovaldi made 12 appearances (11 starts) with a 3.33 ERA and 3–3 record, striking out 48 in 54 innings.
In the 2018 playoffs, Eovaldi pitched seven innings in Game 3 of the Division Series against the New York Yankees, which the Red Sox won 16–1, giving the Yankees their most lopsided loss in postseason history. In Game 3 of the League Championship Series against the Houston Astros, Eovaldi pitched six innings, allowing just two runs, as the Red Sox won 8–2. Eovaldi also pitched 1+1⁄3 innings of relief in Game 5 as Boston clinched the series win.
In the 2018 World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Eovaldi pitched shutout eighth innings in Games 1 and 2. Although he was originally slated to start Game 4, Eovaldi ended up the final reliever in the 18-inning marathon Game 3, the longest game in World Series history. Eovaldi threw 97 pitches over six innings of relief before giving up a walk-off home run to Max Muncy, which made him the losing pitcher. Eovaldi allowed three hits and one earned run, while throwing 36 more pitches than starter Rick Porcello. Eovaldi's 97 pitches set the record for the most in a World Series game by a reliever, and he became the first reliever to throw 6+ innings in a World Series game since Rick Rhoden did so in 1977. In the 13th inning, Boston had taken the lead but an error by Ian Kinsler allowed Los Angeles to tie the score, for which Kinsler later apologized to Eovaldi. Eovaldi received a standing ovation in Boston's clubhouse after the game. The Red Sox went on to win the next two games, winning the World Series in five games. After the World Series, Eovaldi filed for free agency. On December 6, 2018, Eovaldi signed a four-year, $68 million contract to return to the Red Sox.
Eovaldi started the 2019 season with a 6.00 ERA in four starts, all no decisions, before being placed on the injured list on April 20 due to a "loose body" (typically bone fragments) in his pitching (right) elbow. The Red Sox subsequently announced that Eovaldi would have surgery on April 23, and expected him to be out from four to six weeks. On June 25, Eovaldi was moved to the 60-day injured list. In early July, it was reported that the Red Sox would use Eovaldi in a closer role upon his return. He was sent on a rehabilitation assignment with the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox on July 18, and was activated two days later. Eovaldi made four relief appearances with Boston in late July, allowing five earned runs in 3+2⁄3 innings pitched. The Red Sox subsequently listed Brandon Workman as the closer on the team's depth chart. In mid-August, it was announced that Eovaldi would return to being a starter for the remainder of the season. Overall for the 2019 season, Eovaldi made 23 appearances (12 starts), recording a 5.99 ERA and 2–1 record with 70 strikeouts in 67+2⁄3 innings.
For the 2020 season, Eovaldi was named Boston's Opening Day starter (delayed into July due to the COVID-19 pandemic) by manager Ron Roenicke. Eovaldi got the win in that game, pitching six innings while allowing five hits and one run, while striking out four batters, as the Red Sox defeated the Baltimore Orioles, 13–2. On August 29, Eovaldi was placed on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to August 26, due to a right calf strain; he returned to the active roster on September 12. Overall with the 2020 Red Sox, Eovaldi appeared in nine games (all starts), compiling a 4–2 record with 3.72 ERA and 52 strikeouts in 48+1⁄3 innings pitched.
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