I mentioned this in the recaps, but it’s worth mentioning again. Braves reliever Luis Avilan allowed five runs on four hits and a walk in one inning of work last night, squandering the Braves’ 5-1 lead. And, because he was still the pitcher of record when the Braves put up four runs in the top of the ninth, he was awarded with the win. As Jon Weisman points out, Avilan became the first winning pitcher to allow at least five runs in an inning or less in 80 years.
Once again, here’s his line, alongside those of his teammates:
But hey, that’s how wins work. The only time you’ll ever see someone other than the pitcher of record when the final lead was achieved awarded the win is when the starter doesn’t go five innings, thus allowing the official scorer to award it to the most effective overall reliever. But even then they still usually give it to the guy in Avilan’s shoes. The point was moot last night anyway as Ervin Santana pitched six strong innings.
Just another thing to remember the next time some ignoramus goes on about how important and telling pitcher wins are.
Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.
Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.
A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.