Jerad Eickhoff – a Future Philadelphia Star?
On Wednesday, Phillies pitcher Jerad Eickhoff pitched what was most likely the best game of his career. He didn’t let up a single run against the St. Louis Cardinals in a 5-0 victory to win the road series. Eickhoff went eight full innings and threw 106 pitches. His signature slider was extremely effective, and he proved his worth to the team after recently being called back up from triple-A.
Jerad Eickhoff has pitched for Philadelphia over the last few years but struggled with his slider and curveball. Those were and continue to be his two strongest pitches. With two strikes in the count, it’s not a fun matchup for the hitter.
Last summer, he could not pitch after suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, which causes discomfort in the wrist and hand. This required surgery, which led to him being sent to triple-A Lehigh Valley to recover. If there was any doubt about his ability to pitch successfully in the MLB, there isn’t anymore. He arguably is one of the most underrated players on this Philadelphia team.
Many people around the team had praise for the starting pitcher. Eickhoff’s impact on the team both on the field and in the clubhouse will determine if he stays with the team after his contract expires at the end of the season. Regarding his performance, manager Gabe Kapler said,
“He’ll throw a slider outside of the zone when he’s confident he’s going to get a swing…he never looked out of control.”
The team also mourned the passing of longtime executive David Montgomery after his five-year battle with cancer. He had worked with the team since 1971 and was chairman for the past four seasons. Montgomery played an integral role in the transition to Citizens Bank Park in 2004 and had a major impact on the current team and on the 2008 World Series team.
On Friday night, the Phils will begin a three-game road series in Kansas City against the Royals. This will be one of the few times we see Philadelphia in interleague play this year. To view our Phillies column, click here.