Devenski’s changeup was extremely effective this year generating a whopping 42% whiff rate and 43 strikeouts in 106 at-bats so it’s not surprising that the vertical and horizontal movements of the pitch are among the best in the league, with four more vertical inches of break than league average and three inches horizontally. He tends to throw it twice as often against left handed hitters than right handers (49% vs 23% in 2019 and 50% vs 27% in 2018).
Devenski struggled at preventing batters from squaring up on his fastball allowing 16 extra base hits with 8 homeruns which resulted in a wOBA against of .398 and an average exit velocity of 91 mph. He’ll also need to work on his control as he threw it for a strike only 26% of the time.
Devenski was able to match his swinging-strike rate on his slider from 2018 at 14% while getting more swings outside the zone and weaker contact. While it’s clearly his third pitch in his arsenal it was his best pitch according to wOBA against and could possibly further progress from throwing it more.
Devenski has thrown his four-seamer less and less every year (721 pitches in 2016, 501 in 2017, 322 in 2018), so he may be phasing it out. The pitch has seen its fly-ball percentage rise every year (40.9% in 2016, 44.4% in 2017, and 52.5% in 2018) along with its HR/FB% (5.6% in 2016, 13.9% in 2017 and 18.9% in 2018), so it wouldn’t be surprising to see Devenski eventually drop it completely at some point.
Devenski’s best offering by a long shot (7.8 pVal), his changeup served him well in 2018. This is a pretty pitch to look at. It had so much vertical movement that it almost resembled a curveball more than a changeup at times. It fits all the criteria of a Money Pitch with a 46.1 O-swing%, 45.5 Zone%, and a fantastic 20.1 SwStr%.
With a -1.3 pVal in 2018, Devenski’s slider continued a troubling trend of rising rising fly-ball (32.5% in 2017, 50.0% in 2018), and HR/FB percentages (10% in 2017 and 20% in 2018), which could help explain its near four-point drop in pVal from 2017. Also troubling is a rapidly dropping swinging-strike rate (23.1% in 2016, 17.4% in 2017 and 14.0% in 2018) and O-swing% (40.0% in 2016, 33.1% in 2017, 28.7% in 2018).