Dodgers Bullpen: A Closer Look at Yency Almonte

In the latest move on the Los Angeles pitching carousel, the Dodgers on Thursday afternoon selected the contract of right-handed pitcher Yency Almonte after optioning Ryan Pepiot back to triple-A Oklahoma City.

The 24-year-old Pepiot made his debut for the Dodgers on Wednesday in the series finale against the Pirates, taking a no-decision after throwing three full scoreless innings with five walks and three punchouts.

The 6-foot-5, 27-year-old Almonte joins the big-league club after making 11 relief appearances for OKC this season and posting an 0-1 record with a 3.52 ERA.

The Dodgers signed Almonte in a flurry of minor league fringe acquisitions when the league was shut down over the winter. The Miami native and former 17th round pick of the Anaheim Angels in 2012 was among those invited by the Dodgers to the big-league side of 2022 spring training.

Almonte made all his MLB appearances for the Colorado Rockies in a stretch from 2018-21, producing a 4-4 record with a 5.30 ERA over 114 appearances. His best year as a big leaguer came in 2020 when he made 24 relief appearances and posted a 2.93 ERA with 23 punchouts and six walks over 27-2/3 innings.

One of his biggest strengths is keeping the ball inside the park. In 2019, he allowed just 0.7 homers per nine innings pitched.

Almonte struggled in 2019 with a 5.56 ERA, but he turned things around in 2020, posting a 4.18 xFIP and 3.74 SIERA, all of which greatly improved from the year before. He was much better at limiting meaningful contact, as he had a better groundball rate in 2020 (56.3%) compared to 2019 (32.1%). Almonte also had a hard-hit rate of 37.0% and an above-average 3.9%-barrel rate.

Almonte’s average fastball velocity dipped to 94.8 mph in 2020, and he became more reliant on his off-speed pitches. Even with the changes in his pitch selection, he saw a slight increase to a 20.4 K%, and his BB% improved from 8.9% in 2019 to 5.3% in 2020. He was used in some late-game situations, converting on one of his three save chances while recording three holds.

Nevertheless, the Rockies decided to designate him for assignment after the 2021 regular season. After clearing waivers and being assigned outright to Triple-A Albuquerque last October, he chose free agency rather than remaining in the Colorado organization.

Almonte primarily uses a four-seam and a slider mixed with an occasional changeup. According to Brooks Baseball, his heater averaged a tad above 95 mph last season.

Brooksbaseball-Chart

Should Almonte make an appearance for the Dodgers in Thursday’s opener against the Phillies, he will become the 22nd pitcher the team has used so far this season.

10 thoughts on “Dodgers Bullpen: A Closer Look at Yency Almonte

  1. Yency has been pitching up a storm at OKC.
    25 strike outs per walk.
    14.9 strike outs per 9 innings.
    WHIP = 0.848

    Of course, that doesn’t mean those numbers will translate to Dodger Stadium.
    It does mean that Pepiot is unlikely to start one of the doubleheader games against the D’backs next week, unless there is a pitching injury on the horizon, and with Andrew you just never know.

      1. When Farhan saw that we brought in Yency Almonte he tried to sign Yency Brazoban. I had to break the news to him that YB has been retired for 10 years.

      2. I was trying to figure out what name you’d throw back at me. Have to admit, I didn’t think of Elbert. 🙂

  2. Well, this is the Anderson I’ve been expecting to see. He’s not fooling anybody.

    Lux. Head out of ass kid.

    Pepiot may need to come back soon and go 6.

    Yency huh? Yeah, sure. More of the OK a doke.

    1. Why the comment about Lux? I don’t see all the games and events. But that is a thought I’ve had too.

  3. Check the video. He fell asleep on an infield pop up with a runner on third, Segura took off and Lux just casually flipped another ball low and away and runner scored. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a runner even attempt to score on a play like that, but it was Lux out there and it worked.

    1. Yes, I see. He seems to play the game like he thinks it is supposed to be easy. And it doesn’t get easy unitil you are actually good at the game.

      1. I think he got used to being the star every where he played. He’s just one among many stars now.

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