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RHP Mike Ellenbest Stronger than Ever

Ellenbest is back after recovering from Tommy John surgery

RHP Mike Ellenbest Stronger than Ever

May 22, 2019

Photo credit: Tyler Marcotte

Photo credit: Tyler Marcotte


Right-handed pitcher Mike Ellenbest is back on the mound and stronger than ever. Ellenbest, who went through the Tommy John surgery and recovery last year, has made his return this month.

Working out of the bullpen in 2019, Ellenbest hasn’t allowed a hit yet this season, and he has only allowed three walks in his 2 2/3 innings of work for the D-Jays.

Enjoying his bullpen role a lot, Ellenbest discusses what he likes best about his later innings work.

“I like that I can just focus on two or three pitches coming out of the bullpen,” explained Ellenbest. “When I was a starter I had to go out there with a plan. As a reliever I can go out there and attack hitters with my breaking ball or changeup early.”

Using a fastball, a slider, and a changeup primarily out of the bullpen; Ellenbest discusses what he likes best about his slider.

“I like throwing my slider a lot,” said Ellenbest. “I have worked hard at getting it better and harder over the years. I feel it’s my best pitch.”

Another pitch he has developed a lot is his changeup. Viewed as an important pitch in pro ball, Ellenbest has noticed increased feel for the pitch since turning pro.

“Ever since I got drafted – to taking a year off for Tommy John – and compared to how it was in college – it has gotten better.” stated Ellenbest.

And like most pitchers who have gone through Tommy John, Ellenbest  has noticed increased velocity on his 4-seam fastball, and 2-seam sinking fastball.

“I have hit 94 this season, and I’m sitting between 91 and 93 right now.”¬† explained Ellenbest.

There’s a good chance his velocity will increase a little more this season with more repetition, so keep an eye out for Mike Ellenbest in 2019.