Phelps Looking For Carryover

Phelps allowed just one earned run in first start

All David Phelps has done since signing with the Yankees last summer has won ball games. He went 8-2 with a 2.72 ERA for the Staten Island last year and nearly duplicated those same numbers in Charleston this season, and now he's hoping for a carryover effect in Tampa.

Right-Handed Pitcher David Phelps told his teammates that he wouldn't be upset if he stayed in Charleston all summer. Phelps said he was even expecting that.

But later that day his pitching coach broke the news: "Tampa called. They want you. Congratulations." Phelps arrived in Tampa last Tuesday.

"It's definitely a big surprise," Phelps said. "I'm glad it's finally here."

In Charleston, Phelps posted a 2.80 ERA in 112.2 innings. He allowed 48 runs and 117 hits but racked up 90 strikeouts.

"There are a couple outings I wished I could get back. I had a couple rough ones early in the season," he said. "Overall, I felt like I learned a lot [in Charleston] and got a lot better.

"I would give up a run here and all the sudden it would turn into four runs in one inning and it's just I couldn't stop the bleeding."

Phelps said his mechanics have become "fine-tuned", which have helped his pitches become more consistent. He said he has developed a more simple delivery.

"I worked a lot [in Charleston] on controlling the game even with my emotions. That really helped when once things started going fast and being able to slow them down," Phelps said.

He throws a fastball between 88 to 93 MPH, a changeup between 79 to 82 MPH, a slider between 82 to 88 MPH, and a curveball between 76 to 78 MPH.

Phelps said his fastball has hit 94 mph a couple times in his last few outings.

"It's the first time it's been like that all year…I don't really see myself as a guy that's going to throw the ball like that every time," he said. "Just try to get more ground balls and get the pitch ahead of the count and working on my strikes."

Phelps posted a 1.29 ERA in his first outing for Tampa on Friday. He allowed six hits, one run and had four strikeouts in seven innings.

Phelps said the advancement of the hitters in the high-A level will be an adjustment for him.

He said he has progressed a lot since being drafted in the 14th round by the Yankees last June. Now, he wants to focus on getting ahead in his pitching and once he gets there, he wants to stay there.

"I came out of Charleston on kind of a strong stretch there," he said. "I just kind of want to carry that over here and make a good finish to the season."

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