Ivan Nova wants to get off the roller coaster.
The 25-year-old righty is 0-2 with a 7.54 ERA over his last four starts. He was 4-1 with a 1.70 ERA in a seven-start stretch leading into this stretch. He’s 10-5 with a 4.53 ERA overall. He needs to find some consistency.
“I’ve been doing a pretty good job,” said Nova, who has allowed 149 hits, including 21 homers, in 133 innings. “I know I can do more than that. Like everybody knows, I’ve been hit a lot. It’s not something I expected. But we still have time to change a lot of things. We have two more months left in the season, and that can be big for me.”
His last start went very wrong. Nova surrendered a career-high nine runs as well as 10 hits in five innings last Tuesday against the Orioles and lost 11-5. The Yankees handed him a five-run lead in the first and he promptly handed Baltimore seven runs in the second.
“The team, they did their part,” Nova said. “The hitters scored a lot of runs, five runs. You’ve got to win the game with five runs. I just didn’t do my part. I made a lot of mistakes with my pitches. I didn’t do what I wanted to do or what I was supposed to do. That really hurt me.”
Tonight in Detroit, he may have very little margin for error. Justin Verlander is the scheduled starter for the Tigers.
“That’s a good matchup for me,” Nova said. “I’m going to face a very good pitcher. I’ve got to do my job and keep my team as close as I can because he’s a really tough guy to hit.”
For a look back at yesterday’s positive finish to the homestand and the work of Freddy Garcia and Raul Ibanez, please check out my linked article for LoHud.com and The Journal News.