Yankees have a special young pitcher establishing himself in the rotation

New York Yankees starting pitcher Luis Gil (81) adjusts his cap as he walks off the field after being taken out of the game during the sixth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees haven’t had many reasons to frown in the early part of the 2024 MLB season, and that’s thanks in part to the job that one of their star young pitchers is doing on the mound. RHP Luis Gil has stuck out through four starts as a promising talent who’s been able to deliver steady production for the ball club.

Yankees: Luis Gil impressing in his third year on the mound

The third-year pitcher owns a 1-1 record with 29 strikeouts. He’s been able to dominate in two home outings at Yankees Stadium, tossing 17 of his 29 K’s in the storied venue while keeping his ERA at 1.80.

Gil’s peripherals show his strengths in containing potent hitters

MLB: Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

When taking a close look at Gil’s productivity, it shows the makings of an emerging star. The 6-2 righty ranks in the 86th percentile or better in several categories. Gil is in the 99th percentile in the expected batting average (.105%) and the 94th percentile in the hard-hit percentage (25%).

The batters he faces have a low likelihood of gaining a hit off of batted balls. When they connect, it’s not with verve. Further, he also ranks in the 89th percentile in fastball velocity, averaging 96.5 mph this season, and has opponents whiffing on his pitches 32.5% of the time, which places him in the 86th percentile.

Where Gil can take his game from great to excellent as the 2024 MLB season progresses

An area for improvement for the 25-year-old would be his MLB-leading 17 walks. He’s given teams too many easy opportunities to get on base and can tighten up in the strike zone. Gil’s low 21.6% chase percentage proves that. If he makes hitters go for his dominant four-seamer, which he employs 61.9% of the time, as well as his ancillary changeup and slider, that will all work in concert to make him even more effective and pick up K’s earlier against each slugger he faces.

The Yankees are in good hands with Gil as an elite option at the end of the rotation

Among the five Yankees starters in the rotation, Gil leads the pack with his 17 strikeouts, as well as with his 3.00 FIP and 3.7 H9. He’s making a name for himself in the rotation. As the year progresses, he’ll have ample opportunity to fine-tune whatever weaknesses he’s had so far.

At least for now, New York has many reasons to be happy about the work their young pitcher is putting in, especially with reigning American League Cy Young winner Gerrit Cole sidelined. He’ll take the mound again in the Yankees’ upcoming three-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers, which could be as soon as April 26.

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