2 years ago, Luis Perdomo looked like he would stay in the starting rotation for years to come. At times, he was simply dominant. Of course there were times when the wheels would come off, but that’s normal of a rule 5 trial by fire pitcher in his early 20’s.
2018 came along and things got much, much worse. He couldn’t find the plate, and when he did he got shelled. Demoted to AAA, he spent time becoming a more mature student of the game. He pitched well as a reliever during his September call up.
Fast forward to today and Luis Perdomo is suddenly one of the most reliable arms out of the bullpen. In fact, he’s unique in the sense that he can give you length if necessary. In 27 IP he has a 2.67 ERA. Most impressive is his 1.04 WHIP. The man who was always out of control is no longer a thrower, but a pitcher.
His 2 worst outings were against Toronto and Atlanta. He gave up 7 ER in 4 IP. You take out those 2 games, he’s given up just 1 ER in 23 IP. 0.43 ERA. In other words, he’s been dominant.
There’s been a few subtle changes that are worth noting. 1st, his slider. The graph below, courtesy of fangraphs, shows that Perdomo has thrown his Slider more than anytime in his career. He’s thrown it 35.6% of the time vs. 26.5% last year. You can thank the minor league development staff for that. They’ve openly forced players to throw their slider more, and it’s really helped Perdomo. Opponents are hitting just .158 when he throws it. It’s his top “put away” pitch.
2nd, He’s all but abandoned his Splitter. Good thing too, it’s terrible.
Lastly, he’s simply locating his primary pitch, a sinker, incredibly well. He’s cut down dramatically on his walks, and no longer trying to strike everyone out. He’s a true sinkerball that relies on location over power. He’s maturing and trusting his stuff.
Luis Perdomo 3.0 looks to be here to stay. A reliable middle innings arm that can be extended. Sounds good to me.
No longer will Padre fans hold their breath and say “Perdo...NOOOO!!” when this version trots out to the mound.