While the curveball didn’t return to its 2016-17 self, it was still a useful pitch for Eickhoff, only allowing a 66 wRC+.
Eickhoff’s return after an injury-plagued 2018, was, well, injury-plagued. He missed time with a bicep injury and blister issues, and the injuries were seen in his pitches. His fastball came in two ticks slower than in previous years.
Eickhoff’s slider posted the lowest O-Swing% of his career. The result was a paltry 17.6% K rate, and a 36.8% HR/FB rate did him no favors either.
Eickoff’s four-seamer saw a change in both its horizontal and vertical movements in 2018, while gaining one mph in velocity. In its limited sample size, this pitch got hit hard to the tune of a .500 average, but it also nearly doubled its SwStr% and O-swing% from the year before.
In years past, this had been Eickoff’s strikeout pitch and perfect complement to his slider. His curveball also saw a major change in its movement profile in a limited sample size, with mixed results. Its SwStr% more than doubled from 12.7% to over 27%! Unfortunately it was also whacked around for a .308 average and a .231 ISO.
Typically a plus pitch for Eickhoff, the movement of his slider radically changed, gaining about 3.4 inches of horizontal movement along with nearly two mph of velocity on average. With the movement change came a huge drop in K% and a massive spike in BB%. It got hit hard as well, to the tune of a .356 average and a .315 ISO.