Astros Season Rewind: The Intro of James Hoyt

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports /

The James Hoyt Experience was a Little Bumpy This Year with the Astros!

This year we got to see the MLB debut of the young 30 years old (relative) relief pitcher James Hoyt. I was very looking forward to his call up after reading raving reviews by Morgan Ensberg.

Primarily a slider pitcher, Hoyt was having a stellar season at AAA Fresno with a 1.64 ERA and .87 WHIP.  In 49 games and 55 innings pitched, he was a lights out, primarily closing while allowing only two home runs while notching 93 strikeouts. He was awarded for his time at Fresno with a 2016 Mid-Season and Post-Season All-Star nod.

MLB Debut

On August 3, Hoyt got his call up versus Toronto.  From there, he went on to finish his rookie year in the Majors with a 4.50 ERA and 1.14 WHIP during a small sampling of 22 games. While these numbers are not necessarily amazing, a breakdown of his pitching from month to month makes him look much better.

Like most players just coming up, there was a little settling in period for him. During nine games in August, he threw to an ERA of 7.27. This is high based on one bad outing on August 18 against Baltimore.  In just two-thirds of an inning, he got rocked for five hits, four earned runs, and two home runs.

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In September, he settled in nicely, pitching 12 games to a 3.00 ERA. Even better, he had a WHIP of .83. His lone appearance in October resulted in no runs.

Hoyt used his wipeout slider almost 55% of the time. He has above average velocity and spin rate, resulting in a good amount of grounders.  That sits very well for how our Astros’ defense is built. He follows that up with a four-seam fastball that sits around 94 mph that his uses about 37% of the time.

The Struggles of A.J. Reed

The Promising Teoscar Hernandez

A Case of Collin McHugh

The Interesting Case of Luis Valbuena

Southpaw Dallas “Cy” Keuchel

Yulieski “Yuli” Gurriel

The Intro of James Hoyt

Ultra-Utility Man Marwin Gonzalez

The Arrival of Alex Bregman

Evolution of Evan Gattis

“The Dragon” Chris Devenski

Sophomore Slump for Carlos Correa?

The Up’s and Down’s of Luke Gregerson

A Lackluster Year for Left Hander Tony Sipp

Who is the Real Carlos Gomez?

George “Super” Springer

Ken Giles, the Solution or the Problem?

The Mighty Jose Altuve

Next: Astros: Will Jeff Luhnow Use Alex Bregman as trade bait for an ace?

With this pitch set and how good he is with it, Hoyt seems to be setting himself up for a primary bullpen role in the very near future. I hope sooner than later, as I think he would make an excellent set-up man for Ken Giles.  Maybe a good fit to replace Luke Gregerson?

***Stats from Baseball-Reference***