Kelvin Herrera

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Kelvin Herrera
Kelvin Herrera on May 25, 2012.jpg
Herrera with the Kansas City Royals
Free agent
Relief pitcher
Born: (1989-12-31) December 31, 1989 (age 28)
Tenares, Dominican Republic
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
September 21, 2011, for the Kansas City Royals
MLB statistics
(through 2018 Season)
Win–loss record 24–29
Earned run average 2.82
Strikeouts 454
Saves 60
Career highlights and awards

Kelvin de Jesús Herrera Mercado (born December 31, 1989) is a Dominican professional baseball pitcher who is a free agent. He has played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Kansas City Royals and Washington Nationals. Listed at 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m) and 200 pounds (91 kg), Herrera both throws and bats right-handed.

Professional career

Herrera was signed by the Kansas City Royals as a non-drafted free agent in December 2006.[1] From 2007 through 2013, he played for various teams in the Royals' farm system. Through 2010, he was in Class A or below; he then reached both Double-A and Triple-A in 2011. Along with Wil Myers, Herrera represented the Royals at the 2011 All-Star Futures Game.[2]

Kansas City Royals


Herrera was called up to the majors for the first time on September 21, 2011.[3] That day, he gave up three earned runs over two innings, against the Detroit Tigers.[4] He made one other appearance, on September 26, retiring all three batters he faced.[5]


Herrera had a breakout season in 2012. He appeared in 76 games and posted a 2.35 ERA over 84 innings while striking out 77. On August 30, 2012, Herrera recorded his first career save, against Detroit.[6]


Herrera took a bit of a step back in 2013 and spent part of the year in the minors. Herrera finished the season with an ERA of 3.86 in ​58 13 innings pitched, striking out 74 at a rate of 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings, still a career mark. Herrera also surrendered a career-high nine home runs.


In 2014 Herrera became the go-to seventh inning option for manager Ned Yost. Along with set-up man Wade Davis and closer Greg Holland, Herrera was part of one of the most prolific late inning trios in all of baseball.[7] His ERA was 1.41, the best mark of his career, and he did not allow a home run during the entire regular season. He had his first professional at-bat in Game 3 of the World Series in San Francisco, when he struck out. He ended his first postseason with an aggregate 1.80 ERA, striking out 16 in 15 innings pitched.


During a game against the Oakland Athletics on April 19, 2015, Herrera was ejected for throwing a pitch behind Brett Lawrie.[8] One game prior to this incident, his teammate Yordano Ventura was also ejected for hitting Lawrie. On April 22, 2015, Herrera was suspended 5 games.[9] Herrera decided to appeal the suspension.[10] On April 25, 2015, Herrera was suspended an additional 2 games for his role in a brawl against the Chicago White Sox.[11] Herrera, with the absence of Greg Holland in the 2015 postseason, became the 8th inning set-up man for the Royals. At the conclusion of the postseason, Herrera notched a 0.66 ERA with 22 strikeouts in ​13 23 innings pitched with three holds.


Having spent the vast majority of his career as a 7th inning and 8th inning reliever, Herrera took over the role of the Kansas City Royals' closer following a sidelining injury to Wade Davis. Herrera collected 12 saves in 15 opportunities as closer. He ended his season with a 2.75 ERA, striking out 86 in 72 innings pitched surrendering a career low 12 walks in a season. Herrera was named to the 2016 MLB All-Star Game, his second consecutive trip to the Midsummer Classic. In 72 games, he had an ERA of 2.75 with 12 saves.


After the trade of Wade Davis, Herrera was named the full-time closer for the Royals. He was 26-for-31 in save opportunities, ending the season with a career high 4.25 ERA in ​59 13 innings pitched.


In 27 appearances for the 2018 Royals, Herrera compiled a 1.05 ERA with 14 saves, 22 strikeouts, and only two walks in ​25 23 innings of work.[12]

Washington Nationals

On June 18, 2018, the Royals traded Herrera to the Washington Nationals in exchange for three minor-league players (third baseman Kelvin Gutiérrez, outfielder Blake Perkins, and right-handed pitcher Yohanse Morel).[12][13] [14]

Scouting report

With an overhand delivery and quick explosion from the stretch, Herrera throws hard like many Dominican pitchers; his two-seam fastball averages about 97mph and tops out at 103. He pairs his fastball with a deceptive changeup around 87–88 and an occasional curveball in the mid-80s. Herrera occasionally throws a sinker to induce groundball outs. His slider is often touted as his best off=speed pitch. [15]


  1. ^ "Kelvin Herrera". Retrosheet. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  2. ^ Holt, Adam (June 23, 2011). "Kelvin Herrera, Wil Myers to represent Royals at Futures Game". Retrieved August 24, 2012.
  3. ^ Hays, Matthew (September 21, 2011). "Kansas City Royals Designate Kila Ka`aihue For Assignment". SB Nation. Retrieved August 24, 2012.
  4. ^ "Detroit Tigers 6, Kansas City Royals 3". Retrosheet. September 21, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  5. ^ "Kansas City Royals 7, Minnesota Twins 3". Retrosheet. September 26, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  6. ^ "Kansas City Royals 2, Detroit Tigers 1". Retrosheet. August 30, 2012. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  7. ^ Kepner, Tyler (October 13, 2014) Bullpen Gives Royals Three Reasons to Believe. New York Times
  8. ^ Cwik, Chris. "Herrera ejected for throwing at Lawrie, benches clear". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved April 19, 2015.
  9. ^ McCollough, Andy. "Herrera suspended 5 games for throwing at Lawrie". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  10. ^ Flanagan, Jeffrey. "Herrera to appeal 5-game suspension". Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  11. ^ "6 players suspended after Royals-Sox brawl. Herrera suspended 2 games". Retrieved April 25, 2015.
  12. ^ a b Anonymous, "Right-handed reliever Kelvin Herrera traded to Nationals from Royals," ESPN, June 18, 2018, 8:36 p.m. EDT Retrieved June 18, 2018
  13. ^ Koch, Makenzie, "Royals trade All-Star pitcher Kelvin Herrera to Nationals for 3 minor league players,", June 18, 2018, 7:13 p.m. CDT Retrieved June 18, 2018
  14. ^ Janes, Chelsea (June 18, 2018). "Nationals acquire reliever Kelvin Herrera from Royals to bolster back of the bullpen". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  15. ^ "PITCHf/x Player Card: Kelvin Herrera". Retrieved May 6, 2012.

External links

  • Career statistics and player information from MLB, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors) Error: Template:Baseballstats cube= parameter must be all-numeric., or Retrosheet
  • Kelvin Herrera on Twitter
  • Kelvinh40 on Instagram
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