Exit Interview 2023: Giovanny Gallegos

This season didn’t go like most seasons.  The Cardinals were terrible.  I stopped writing here very much, with nothing after the blog anniversary.  However, some things must go on and that includes the Exit Interview series!  Now in its 12th year, it’s our look back at each player that made an appearance in a game for the St. Louis Cardinals.  We’re approaching it a little different this season, a little more literary and a little less statistical, but hopefully you enjoy it just the same.  As always, I am grateful that cardinalsgifs has agreed to use his talent for the header image!

Player: Giovanny Gallegos

Stats: 2-4, 10 SV, 56 G, 55.0 IP, 54 H, 11 HR, 12 BB, 59 K, 4.42 ERA, 4.37 FIP, 1.200 WHIP, 0.3 bWAR

Statcast: 10.1% barrel, 38.6% sweet spot, 110.8 max exit velocity, .322 wOBA, .319 xwOBA, 25.8% K, 5.2% BB

Grade: C

Last year, on one of the early offseason episodes of Meet Me at Musial, Allen and I discussed the idea that Gallegos could be a non-tender candidate.  The pitch clock was coming, which was sure to have an impact on one of the slowest pitchers in the league, his home run rate was up, and he went through stretches where you just couldn’t trust him.  Of course, almost the day after the discussion takes place, the Cardinals sign him to a two-year extension.  Which, in fairness, if you do the opposite of what I suggest, you are going to be successful a large portion of the time so I get that.

Some of the concerns wound up being unfounded, most notably the pitch clock.  Gallegos had some issues in spring training but eventually adjusted enough that he wasn’t getting slapped with clock violations.  The Cardinals only had 30 pitcher violations as a team for the season and Gallegos had three of them.  (Adam Wainwright led the team with four, if you were wondering.  Genesis Cabrera also had four but I couldn’t tell if any of those happened in Toronto.)

The inconsistency remained, however.  Just look at his month-to-month stats:

Months — Game-Level
April/March 1 0 1.000 1.00 9 3 1 9.0 4 1 1 0 2 11 0.667 11.0 5.50
May 0 2 .000 3.29 12 8 6 13.2 15 6 5 2 2 10 1.244 6.6 5.00
June 0 2 .000 11.00 9 1 1 9.0 10 11 11 5 3 8 1.444 8.0 2.67
July 1 0 1.000 0.68 12 1 0 13.1 9 1 1 0 2 15 0.825 10.1 7.50
August 0 0 14.73 6 2 1 3.2 10 6 6 2 1 4 3.000 9.8 4.00
Sept/Oct 0 0 4.26 8 1 1 6.1 6 3 3 2 2 11 1.263 15.6 5.50
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/27/2023.
You couldn’t trust him in June, he was lights out in July.  In fairness, it seems like he may have been tipping his pitches and he wound up finishing the year on the injured list, so maybe this isn’t an unsolvable problem.  Seeing him with a 4.71 ERA in save situations, though, was enough for the heartburn to rise whenever he would come into the game.  Say this for Gallegos, though–he made batters beat him.  His walk rate was extremely low, one of the best in the league.  The problem was that too often the batters were up for the challenge.
What’s in store for 2024: Well, Gallegos is under contract so I’m not going to be suggesting that they cut ties with him this year.  If the tipping was an issue, that might mean he can be a valuable, perhaps extremely valuable piece at the end of the bullpen.  That said, tipping pitches can be a reason, can be an excuse.  I think we’ll see times where Gallegos is nails in tight situations and games where he comes in and allows a two-run homer to lose it.  You know, what we’ve seen the last couple of years.
Series Navigation<< Exit Interview 2023: Jack FlahertyExit Interview 2023: Paul Goldschmidt >>

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