Yankees’ young star pitcher might be dealing with mechanical issues

MLB: Chicago White Sox at New York Yankees, luis gil
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

New York Yankees starter Luis Gil seemed, at one point not so long ago, on his way to being named the AL Rookie of the Year and potentially starting the All-Star Game for the American League. His ERA before June 20 was 2.03. Now, after allowing 16 earned runs over 9.2 frames in his last three outings, it’s at 3.41. Everybody is concerned.

The team and the pitcher, however, maintain there is no injury or even no fatigue to report. As Mike Petriello points out, his fastball has been losing some ride in his last three starts.

The fact there hasn’t been a loss in velocity is excellent and a good omen for the Yankees. There is an issue, though, and Gil thinks it’s mechanical.

“Overall, things mechanically, you sink into your body to a good point where you feel comfortable,” Gil said through interpreter Marlon Abreu. “Sometimes, you hit bumps when you are competing at this level. At the same time, I feel assured of myself that by working hard, I’ll be able to get out of it and not let things keep happening,” he said to MLB.

The Yankees are confident Gil can be fixed

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees, luis gil
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If he is truly healthy, the loss in his IVB in his last three games should be fixable. He needs to go back to the basics, make the tweaks he needs, and trust his stuff because he is walking more people and missing fewer bats in recent outings.

For the season as a whole, Gil has a 27.4 percent strikeout rate and a 12.9 percent walk rate. In his last three starts, however, the Yankees’ righty has struck out just 10.7 percent of the batters he has faced and walked a whopping 16.1 percent. He resembles the pitcher he was, for stints, in the minor leagues and not the one he became this season in MLB.

If he gets his swing-and-miss stuff back, he will earn more strikeouts and fool more hitters, boosting his plate discipline numbers and giving himself a chance to get out of his hole. The Yankees, specifically pitching coach Matt Blake, should be working alongside him to make sure he doesn’t have any more disastrous starts and his confidence doesn’t keep diminishing.

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