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David Phelps (baseball)

David Phelps
Phelps with the New York Yankees
Miami Marlins – No. 41
Born: (1986-10-09) October 9, 1986 (age 29)
St. Louis, Missouri
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
April 8, 2012 for the New York Yankees
Career statistics
(through May 4, 2015)
Win–loss record 16–14
Earned run average 4.13
Strikeouts 283
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David Edward Phelps (born October 9, 1986) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball (MLB). He played in MLB for the New York Yankees from 2012 to 2014. He bats and throws right-handed, is 6 feet and 2 inches tall, and weighs 200 pounds.[1] Prior to beginning his professional career, Phelps played college baseball at the University of Notre Dame.

Amateur career

Phelps attended Hazelwood West High School in Hazelwood, Missouri, where he played basketball and baseball. For the baseball team, he was named to the All-Conference Team as both an outfielder and pitcher as a sophomore, and as team captain and to the All-Conference, All-Metro Performer, and team captain as a junior and senior. He was a member of the National Honor Society.[2]

File:David Phelps on April 14, 2012.jpg
David Phelps' pitching motion.

Though he was ranked as the sixth best prospect from Missouri prior to the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft, he was not selected due to his strong commitment to enroll at the University of Notre Dame, where he pitched for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish baseball team.[2] As a freshman, Phelps pitched sparsely as a reliever. As a sophomore, he pitched in the starting rotation, earning Big East All-Conference First Team, Academic All-District and Academic All-American honors.[2] He struggled in his junior season.[2] While in college, he also pitched for the Mat-Su Miners of the Alaska Baseball League and Falmouth Commodores of the Cape Cod League.[2]

Professional career

New York Yankees

While pitching at Notre Dame, Damon Oppenheimer, the scouting director for the New York Yankees, noticed Phelps while on a visit to scout Kyle Weiland, Phelps' teammate. Based on Oppenheimer's rcoomendation, the Yankees selected Phelps in the 14th round of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft.[3] Phelps was named to the 2010 Eastern League All-Star Game.[4] In 2011, he played for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees, the Triple-A affiliate of the New York Yankees.[1] Phelps was named the Yankees minor league pitcher of the year for 2010.[5] He was added to the Yankees 40-man roster after the 2011 season to protect him from the Rule 5 draft,[6] and on April 4, 2012, it was announced that Phelps had made the Yankees' Major League roster.

On April 29, 2012, Phelps was moved into the starting rotation to replace the struggling Freddy García. Phelps started 0–0 with a 3.57 ERA in six games before the switch. After making two starts for the Yankees, the team shifted him back to the bullpen when they promoted Andy Pettitte.[7] Phelps was sent down to Triple-A after David Robertson came off from the disabled list.

He returned to the team as a starter when Pettitte and CC Sabathia were placed on the DL with injuries.[8]

During a game against the New York Mets on May 29, 2013, Phelps surrendered 5 runs (4 earned) in the first inning and only lasted 13 of an inning. It was the shortest outing for any Yankees starting pitcher at the new Yankee Stadium. On July 6, 2013, Phelps was placed on the 15-day disabled list due to a right forearm strain. On August 15, 2013, Phelps was transferred to the 60-day disabled list. On September 14, 2013 Phelps was reinstated from the 60-day disabled list.[9]

In 2014, Phelps had a 5-5 record with a 4.38 ERA in 113 innings having 92 Strikeouts and 42 walks in 32 games, 17 started.

Miami Marlins

On December 19, 2014, the Yankees traded Phelps and Martín Prado to the Miami Marlins for Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Jones, and Domingo Germán.[10]

Pitching style

Phelps throws four pitches. He has a four-seam fastball (90–92), two-seam fastball (89–92), cutter (86–88) and a changeup (82–85). The two-seamer is his primary pitch to left-handed hitters, and his four-seamer is his primary pitch to right-handers. He uses his changeup exclusively against lefties. He likes to use his cutter in 2-strike counts against righties.[11]


Phelps is a devout Christian.[12] Phelps attended the University of Notre Dame, where he met his wife, Maria, when they had to work together on an assignment. He asked her out numerous times over the course of a year, and she said no each time. Eventually Phelps, who was raised Roman Catholic, began refocusing on his faith, leading Maria to finally say yes to him. However, he began attending an Assemblies of God church. He describes his journey from that point as such:

"I thought all you needed was to accept Jesus as your Savior, and everything would be fine. Church attendance was seen as nice but not necessary [in the Assemblies of God church].

Maria would help me grow in my understanding of everything Jesus has to offer us and what we’re called to give back to him. After she finally said Yes to me in the spring of 2008, she would ask me what I believed, I would reply, and she would ask more questions. Instead of a one-dimensional, oversimplified, linear way of thinking, Maria had a three-dimensional, vibrant and comprehensive way of thinking.

Maria’s influence and that of her family had such an effect on me that, by the fall of 2009, I came to realize what I was missing out on. There are so many great things in the Catholic Church, but the most desirable one is the Eucharist. It had been so long since I had received Jesus sacramentally, and I knew it was time to start doing so again.

I wanted to meet up with a priest in order to discuss my concerns and to be reconciled with the Church. Even though I was drafted in 2008, I would return for the fall semester at Notre Dame three consecutive years in order to finish my degree. This is how I was able to get in touch with Father Paul Doyle, a Holy Cross priest at Notre Dame, in the fall of 2009.

We discussed my concerns, and he heard my confession. All the obstacles that had kept me back from being totally united to Jesus were removed, and I was able to receive him in the Eucharist again. It was a great relief to be back in the Church."[12]

Phelps and his wife had their first child, daughter Adeline, on March 22, 2012,[13] and a second daughter, Eloise Susan, in December 2013.[14]


  1. ^ a b "David Phelps Stats, Bio, Photos, Highlights | Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees Stats". December 21, 2010. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Prospect Profile: David Phelps | River Avenue Blues". December 22, 2010. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  3. ^ Fox Sports. "St. Louis Cardinals have perhaps the most talented team in baseball, so logically GM John Mozeliak is in no hurry to get rid of any of it". FOX Sports. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Thunder to send 4 to All-Star Game – Laird, Romine, Phelps, Pendleton on Eastern squad". June 30, 2010. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Nunez, Phelps pick up organizational honors". February 25, 2011. Retrieved June 2, 2011. 
  6. ^ Yankees add five players to 40-man roster/
  7. ^ "Phelps to return to bullpen after rotation stint". New York Yankees. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  8. ^ Carig, Marc (July 3, 2012). "Yankees' David Phelps gets start with Andy Pettitte, CC Sabathia sidelined". New Jersey Star-Ledger. Retrieved July 4, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Phelps reinstated from DL to bolster bullpen". September 14, 2013. 
  10. ^ "New York Yankees trade Martin Prado to Miami Marlins for Nathan Eovaldi - ESPN New York". Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  11. ^ "PITCHf/x Player Card: David Phelps". Retrieved May 10, 2012. 
  12. ^ a b "Perseverance Pays Off for New York Yankees’ Pitcher". National Catholic Register. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Sports - The Journal News - -". The Journal News - Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Bleeding Yankee Blue". Retrieved December 19, 2014. 

External links