Phillies pitcher Aaron Nola’s September struggles continuing
Throughout his career, Phillies starting pitcher Aaron Nola loses a step once September rolls around, and this year is no exception.
Back in July, I wrote that if the Phillies were to have any success in the second half, it would be on the back of Aaron Nola. He was starting to turn things around towards the end of June after starting the month rather poorly. If Nola could recapture what made him a Cy Young contender in 2018, he could carry his team to the playoffs.
Nola put up strong numbers in July and August, posting a 2.52 ERA across 12 starts. Philadelphia won eight of the 12 games he started, with Nola receiving the loss in just two starts. He was doing more enough to help the team win games, which is all you could really ask for.
Unfortunately, since the calendar turned to September, Nola is back to the struggles that plagued him early in the season. In two starts this month, Nola has allowed nine runs, 11 hits, seven walks, and two home runs in ten innings. Considering Nola only walked nine batters and issues two home runs in all of August, this is definitely a sign for concern.
More from That Balls Outta Here
- 11 Free-agent deals the Philadelphia Phillies wish fell through
- Phillies-Mets owners’ rivalry grows after shocking Carlos Correa deal
- Could Rich Hill become ‘Jamie Moyer 2.0’ in Phillies rotation?
- Does Bailey Falter have a future in Phillies’ rotation?
- Prospect Andrew Baker could help Phillies bullpen in 2023
If you look back at how Nola has fared in previous Septembers during his career, his struggles this month shouldn’t be all that surprising. In his rookie year of 2015, his ERA jumped from 3.25 in August to 4.18. Nola didn’t pitch in 2016 as he was shut down for the year with an elbow injury. 2017 was the only year his ERA didn’t rise from August to September, instead dropping from 4.23 to 3.86.
After going strong all season long last year, Nola finally tailed off in September. He finished the month with a 3.72 ERA and nine home runs, one more than all the home runs he allowed in the five months prior combined. His poor September is what solidified his third-place finish in Cy Young voting.
Now, we are once again watching Nola falter in September. The team’s odds of winning games are better when he is on the mound, but not when he is struggling. Unfortunately, that is once again the case, putting more pressure on the other starters.