Padres: Three things to watch in Dodgers series
By Ryan Sikes
What impact will Jerad Eickhoff have on the Padres bullpen?
Signed to a minor league deal in December, Jerad Eickhoff has primarily been a starter in his career, with his last full season coming in 2016. He’s been derailed by injuries since then, and he was recently promoted, expected to contribute to the Padres bullpen.
Eickhoff, 30, has made just four appearances from the bullpen, and while the results are obviously limited, he has a 9.00 ERA. So why should we expect him to do anything positive? Eickhoff, again limited, has a 12.9 K/9 as a reliever compared to an 8.0 K/9 in the rotation.
You see this all over the league—starters who overcome injuries and move to the bullpen, finding success in the process. Eickhoff features four pitches, although he rarely uses his sinker.
Opponents hit .333 off his fastball last year but just .184 off his curveball, including 29 strikeouts. His slider produced a 40.1 whiff rate, despite opponents hitting .270 off it in 2019. Let’s see what he can do in one-inning sample sizes.