Philadelphia Phillies: Can Nick Pivetta be an asset in the bullpen?
Nick Pivetta has gone through his fair share of struggles this season, but the 26-year old could be better suited for a different role with the Philadelphia Phillies. It was important for the Phils to get better production from younger arms whether it’s Vince Velasquez, Zach Eflin, Enyel De Los Santos or Pivetta.
Eflin and Velasquez have stood out, but unfortunately, Pivetta has looked bad, to say the least.
Pivetta has allowed 18 runs in 18.1 innings this year and was demoted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley a few weeks ago. With Jared Eickhoff getting the nod to take Pivetta’s spot in the rotation and probably have a lot of time to prove himself, maybe Pivetta should eye a new role.
The Phils bullpen hasn’t been very sharp so far in 2019, but Pivetta has the potential to be a solid long relief man and at times a middle reliever.
In the last 10 years or so the Phils have witnessed a few starters go to the pen, such as Brett Myers, Ryan Madson, and Antonio Bastardo. Pivetta is capable of pitching at a high level, but he must have a better command of his pitches.
There comes a point where if you’re the Phillies, do you give Pivetta more chances to start when A) you’re trying to win now, B) the pen needs help and C) other young players are seeking an opportunity in to throw in in the bigs. Pivetta could be a good bullpen piece, but it may be best for Philly.
A big lesson can be learned by watching teams with young athletes. If you’re in a major market trying to win titles, don’t wait too long for a minor leaguer to grow and succeed. Either they have that ‘it’ factor or they don’t. In closing, he should get chances to show what he’s made of as a reliever, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended up back in the Philadelphia Phillies’ starting five once again.