Luke Hochevar

Luke Anthony Hochevar (/ˈhoʊtʃeɪvər/; born September 15, 1983) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. He played college baseball at the University of Tennessee, and played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Kansas City Royals.

Luke Hochevar
Luke Hochevar on June 22, 2016 (1)
Hochevar with the Royals in 2016
Pitcher
Born: September 15, 1983 (age 35)
Denver, Colorado
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 8, 2007, for the Kansas City Royals
Last MLB appearance
July 24, 2016, for the Kansas City Royals
MLB statistics
Win–loss record46–65
Earned run average4.98
Strikeouts702
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Early life

Luke Hochevar was born in Denver, Colorado, raised in Wiley, Colorado, and later moved to Fowler, Colorado, with parents Brian and Carmen Hochevar along with one brother and one sister.[1] His father was a college basketball player at the University of Southern Colorado (now CSU-Pueblo) [2] who had an unsuccessful tryout with the Denver Nuggets[1] and who later turned to coaching, including serving as Luke's baseball coach at Fowler High School.[3] While at Fowler High, Hochevar was named Colorado Division 2A Player of the Year his senior year and was a three-time all-state selection.[1] He was a multi-sport athlete, earning all-state honors in basketball. Hochevar excelled in the classroom as well, and was named an academic all-state four consecutive years.[1]

College career

Hochevar was selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 39th round (1,191st overall) of the 2002 MLB amateur entry draft but chose to attend college at the University of Tennessee instead. Hochevar was used primarily as a relief pitcher during his freshman year for the Volunteers, striking out 73 batters and walking 24 in 77 innings of work.[1] His sophomore season was injury plagued for Hochevar; he missed a total of eight weeks playing time. However, he was good enough to be selected for the USA Baseball National Team, earning the victory in the FISU II World University Baseball Championship against Japan.[1] Hochever bounced back as a junior, striking out a school record 154 batters, posting a 15-3 record, and 2.26 ERA for the season.[1] For his efforts he was named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year and won the Roger Clemens Award.[4]

Professional career

Draft and minor leagues

The Dodgers would select Hochevar again, this time in the first round (40th overall) of the 2005 draft. After initial negotiations between the Dodgers and Hochevar and his agent Scott Boras, Hochevar switched agents to Matt Sosnick and accepted a $2.98 million signing bonus from scouting director Logan White.[5] However, the next day Hochevar changed his mind on switching agents, returning to Boras and reneging on the deal.[5] Several months of lukewarm talks continued, but amidst much bitterness, the two sides never came close to reaching a new agreement.[6]

He entered the draft yet again in 2006 and was selected first overall by the Kansas City Royals. On August 3, nearly two months after the draft, Hochevar signed a four-year major league contract worth $5.3 million guaranteed with the Royals.[6] He received a $3.5 million signing bonus with the ability to earn as much as $7 million over the four years.

Kansas City Royals

2007–2010

Hochevar made his major league debut September 8, 2007 in a game against the New York Yankees. In four appearances, Hochevar had a 0-1 record and a 2.13 ERA.

In 2008, he had the lowest run support of all pitchers, with an average of 2.8 runs per game started, finishing with a record of 6-12. His ERA though, was a high one, finishing at 5.51 in 22 starts.[2]

Following the Royals' 2009 spring training, he was optioned to the Triple-A Omaha Royals to learn to "use both sides of the plate with more consistency" and to stay away from big innings.[7] He was called up to the Royals starting rotation on May 10.[8]

In his 2009 debut, Hochevar lasted just two innings and surrendered eight runs. On June 12, 2009, Hochevar pitched an 80 pitch complete game, only allowing 3 hits and 1 run; this was a feat that had only been accomplished by 5 pitchers in American League the previous 20 years.[9] On July 25, 2009, Hochevar recorded a career high 13 strikeouts in 7 innings in a 6-3 win over the Texas Rangers. On September 18, 2009, Hochevar threw his first career shutout in an 11–0 win over the Chicago White Sox.

Despite these accomplishments, Hochevar struggled with his consistency through the '09 season, posting the highest ERA of AL starters (6.55) while going 7-13.

In his first start of the year on April 7, 2010, Hochevar threw 7​23 scoreless innings in a 3-2 win in 11 innings over the Detroit Tigers. Through June 2010, Hochevar was 5-4 with a 4.96 ERA. He was on the Disabled List with a right elbow strain from mid-June until September. He finished the year at 6-6 with a 4.81 ERA.

2011–2013

Luke Hochevar on May 25, 2011
Hochevar with the Royals in 2011

Hochevar was the Royals' opening day starter in 2011. At the All-Star break, he had a win-loss record of 5-8 with a 5.46 ERA. He fared significantly better after the break, ending the season with an 11-11 record and a 4.68 ERA. Also notable was his 1.28 WHIP.

Hochevar's strong finish in 2011 suggested that he might emerge as a top-quality starting pitcher in 2012. Instead, he experienced a disappointing season, finishing with an 8-16 record and a 5.73 ERA.[10] He allowed more earned runs than any other major league pitcher, and his -1.7 WAR (Wins Above Replacement) was the worst of his career.

On January 15, 2013 Hochevar filed for salary arbitration, the only Royals player to do so in the off-season, and the second year in a row that he has done so. In 2012, he and the team settled on a $3.51 million one-year deal.[10] The Royals announced on January 18, 2013 that they had reached agreement with Hochevar on a one-year contract worth $4.56 million, thus avoiding arbitration.[11]

On March 13, 2013. Royals manager Ned Yost announced that Hochevar would not begin the season in the starting rotation. Hochevar was instead assigned to the bullpen for middle relief duties. In that role, he performed effectively for the Royals, posting a 1.92 ERA in 70.1 innings. He also struck out 82 batters while walking only 17.

2014–2016

During a Spring Training game against the White Sox on March 3, 2014, Hochevar suffered an elbow injury and left the game. An MRI the following day showed a tear of the UCL in the right elbow. On March 7, 2014 Royals officials confirmed the injury and stated Hochevar would be undergoing Tommy John surgery to repair the damage.[12] The surgery caused Hochevar to miss the entire 2014 season.[13]

On December 3, 2014, Hochevar signed a 2-year, $10 million agreement with the Kansas City Royals.[14] He made 49 appearances in the 2015 season, with a record of 1-1, 1 save, and an ERA of 3.73.[15] Hochevar was the winning pitcher in the deciding Game 5 of the World Series. It was the Royals' first championship in 30 years.

In 2016, Hochevar made 40 appearances, finishing the year 2-3 with a 3.86 ERA. On November 5, 2016, the Royals declined their 2017 option on Hochevar, making him a free agent for the first time of his career.[16]

On August 13, 2018, Hochevar announced his retirement.[17]

Pitching style

Hochevar has a wide variety of pitches. He has a four-seam fastball and sinker that average about 93 mph, a cutter averaging 89, a slider at 85, a curveball in the high 70s, and a changeup in the low 80s. He uses five of the pitches to both right-handed and left-handed hitters, eschewing only the slider to lefties and the changeup to righties. His wide pitch variety can make him unpredictable to hitters; even in full counts, Hochevar throws his four-seamer, sinker, cutter, and slider in roughly equal proportions.[18]

Personal

Hochevar comes from a family of athletes. In addition to his father's college basketball career and success as a high school and college baseball coach, Luke's sister Brittany was a volleyball standout at Long Beach State and currently plays beach volleyball for the AVP Pro Beach Volleyball tour.[1]

In August 2016, Hochevar had surgery to repair nerve damage in his throwing arm caused by thoracic outlet syndrome.[19]

Hochevar and his wife, Ashley, married in January 2007. They have two daughters and 1 son.[20]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Player bio: Luke Hochevar". University of Tennessee Sports Information Department. 2006. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  2. ^ "The last Hochevar could be the best". denverpost.com. May 3, 2007.
  3. ^ Lopez, Larry (October 9, 2012). "3-sport wonder: 'Hoch' was South High triggerman in early '70s". The Pueblo Chieftain via website. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  4. ^ Molony, Jim (June 6, 2006). "Royals tab Hochevar as No. 1 pick". MLB.com. Retrieved March 9, 2009.
  5. ^ a b "Hochevar Negotiations Get Weird". Baseball America website. September 9, 2005. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  6. ^ a b "Should Royals give up on No. 1 draft pick Hochevar". Baseball Nation. June 4, 2012. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  7. ^ Royals Option Hochevar to Omaha SI.com, April 1, 2009
  8. ^ Kaegel, Dick (May 10, 2009). "Closer Soria place on disabled list". MLB.com. Retrieved May 10, 2009.
  9. ^ [1] Kansas City Star, June 12, 2009
  10. ^ a b Kaegel, Dick (January 15, 2013). "Hochevar only Royals player to file for arbitration". MLB.com via KC Royals official website. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  11. ^ Kaegel, Dick (January 18, 2013). "Royals sign Hochevar to avoid arbitration". MLB.com via KC Royals team werbsite. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
  12. ^ "Royals Pitcher Luke Hochevar to have "Tommy John surgery"". KSHB-TV via website. March 7, 2014. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  13. ^ "Royals RHP Hochevar having season-ending surgery". Associated Press. ESPN.com. Retrieved March 8, 2014.
  14. ^ http://m.royals.mlb.com/news/article/103043692/luke-hochevar-reportedly-agrees-to-re-sign-with-royals
  15. ^ "Luke Hochevar - Kansas City - Major League Baseball - Yahoo! Sports". Yahoo Sports.
  16. ^ Wilmoth, Charlie (November 5, 2016). "Royals Decline Luke Hochevar's Option". mlbtraderumors.com. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
  17. ^ Flanagan, Jeffrey (August 13, 2018). "Hochevar retires from Royals with no regrets". MLB.com. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  18. ^ "PITCHf/x Player Card: Luke Hochevar". BrooksBaseball.net. Retrieved May 6, 2012.
  19. ^ Max Rieper (April 18, 2017). "Luke Hochevar's 2017 season likely a "wash"". Royals Review. Retrieved July 28, 2018.
  20. ^ "Luke Hochevar's family spends spring training in Surprise". Fox 4. Retrieved December 21, 2017.

External links

2002 Major League Baseball draft

The 2002 First-Year Player Draft, Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft, was held on June 4 and 5.

It is featured in Michael Lewis' 2003 book Moneyball.

2005 College Baseball All-America Team

An All-American team is an honorary sports team composed of the best amateur players of a specific season for each team position—who in turn are given the honorific "All-America" and typically referred to as "All-American athletes", or simply "All-Americans". Although the honorees generally do not compete together as a unit, the term is used in U.S. team sports to refer to players who are selected by members of the national media. Walter Camp selected the first All-America team in the early days of American football in 1889.The NCAA recognizes four different All-America selectors for the 2005 college baseball season: the American Baseball Coaches Association (since 1947), Baseball America (since 1981), Collegiate Baseball (since 1991), and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (since 2001).

2005 Los Angeles Dodgers season

In 2005, the Los Angeles Dodgers suffered from a rash of injuries to key players such as closer Éric Gagné, shortstop César Izturis and outfielder J. D. Drew and fell to their second worst record in Los Angeles history, finishing in fourth place in the Western Division of the National League. After the season, manager Jim Tracy and General Manager Paul DePodesta were both fired and the team was torn apart. This was also the last season to be broadcast on KCOP (13).

2005 Major League Baseball draft

The 2005 First-Year Player Draft, Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft, was held on June 7 and 8. It was conducted via conference call with representatives from each of the league's 30 teams. It is widely considered to be one of the best drafts in recent memory.Source: Major League Baseball 2005 Official Draft Site

2006 Major League Baseball draft

The 2006 First-Year Player Draft, Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft, was held on June 6 and 7. It was conducted via conference call with representatives from each of the league's 30 teams.

2009 Kansas City Royals season

The 2009 Kansas City Royals season was the 41st season for the franchise, and their 39th at Kauffman Stadium. The season began on April 7 with a game against the Chicago White Sox at U. S. Cellular Field, which Chicago won. On April 10, the Royals hosted the New York Yankees in the first game at the newly renovated Kauffman Stadium for the Royals' home opener. Interleague opponents included the St. Louis Cardinals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Cincinnati Reds, Houston Astros and Pittsburgh Pirates.The Royals looked to improve on their 2008 record of 75–87 and sought their first playoff appearance since 1985, as manager Trey Hillman returned for his second season with Kansas City. The Royals' payroll for the 2009 season was $70.5 million, approximately 25 percent higher than their 2008 payroll (and 21st in the major leagues).There was much optimism for the Royals heading into the season, with some experts saying they had the potential reach the postseason. After a strong start and 18–11 record, the Royals suffered several losing streaks and fell back to a losing record, finishing with a dismal 65-97 record.

2011 Kansas City Royals season

The Kansas City Royals' season of 2011 was the 43rd for the Royals franchise. It was the fifth full season with Dayton Moore as General Manager. The team was managed by Ned Yost in his first full season with the Royals. It was the 26th straight year of the Royals missing the playoffs.

2013 Kansas City Royals season

The Kansas City Royals' season of 2013 was the 45th for the Royals franchise which began on April 1, 2013 against the Chicago White Sox.

After a winning record in spring training (setting a team and MLB record), the Royals remained over .500 nearly most of April during regular season play. The team also didn't commit an error in their first seven games (for 64 2/3 innings) for the first time in team history. On September 22, the Royals won their 82nd game of the season, to clinch their 2nd winning season since 1994 and first since 2003.

2015 Kansas City Royals season

The 2015 Kansas City Royals season was the 47th for the franchise, and their 43rd at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals made their second consecutive World Series appearance in 2015, after winning the American League in 2014. They won the series for the first time since 1985. The team won their first AL Central title on September 24, 2015, the first time the Royals won their division since 1985. They opened the playoffs by defeating the Houston Astros in five games in the Division Series and then defeated the Toronto Blue Jays in six games in the American League Championship Series. They defeated the New York Mets in five games in the 2015 World Series, the second World Series championship in franchise history. The 2015 Royals are the first team since the 1989 Oakland Athletics to win the World Series after having lost the series in the previous season.

Bug Holliday

James Wear "Bug" Holliday (February 8, 1867 – February 15, 1910) was an American center fielder in Major League Baseball for ten seasons, in the 1885 World Series and from 1889 through 1898. He is the first player to make his major league debut in post-season play, with the Chicago White Stockings in 1885. He played the rest of his career with the Cincinnati Reds, both when they were in the American Association and in the National League. He twice led the league in home runs, and was among the leaders in various other offensive categories throughout his career. After his playing career was over, he was an umpire for one season.

Hochevar

Hochevar is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Brittany Hochevar (born 1981), American volleyball player

Luke Hochevar (born 1983), American baseball pitcher

Hočevar

Hočevar is a Slovenian surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Andrej Hočevar (born 1984), Slovenian ice hockey goaltender

Franc Hočevar (1853-1919)

Matej Hočevar (born 1982), Slovenian ice hockey player

Simon Hočevar (born 1974), Slovenian slalom canoer

Stanislav Hočevar (born 1944), Roman Catholic archbishop of Belgrade

Toussaint Hočevar (1927-1987), Slovenian American economic historian

Tone Hočevar (born 1951), Slovenian slalom canoer

Zoran Hočevar (born 1944), Slovene writer

List of Kansas City Royals first-round draft picks

The Kansas City Royals are a Major League Baseball franchise based in Kansas City, Missouri. The franchise, founded in 1969, plays in the American League Central division. Since the institution of Major League Baseball's Rule 4 Draft, the Royals have selected 56 players in the first round. Officially known as the "First-Year Player Draft", the Rule 4 Draft is Major League Baseball's primary mechanism for assigning amateur players from high schools, colleges, and other amateur baseball clubs to its franchises. The draft order is determined based on the previous season's standings with the team that had the worst record receiving the first pick. In addition, teams that lost free agents in the previous off-season may be awarded compensatory or supplementary picks. The First-Year Player Draft is unrelated to the 1968 expansion draft in which the Royals initially filled their roster.

Of the 56 players first-round draft picks, 30 have been pitchers, the most of any position; 20 of these were right-handed, while 10 were left-handed. Twelve outfielders were selected, and eight shortstops, three catchers, and two third basemen were taken. The team also selected one player at first base, but has never drafted a second baseman. Fifteen of the players came from institutions in the state of California, while Florida and Texas follow with seven players each. The Royals have drafted two players, Luke Hochevar (2006) and Aaron Crow (2009), who were playing in the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball at the time of their draft. Both had been drafted previously by other major league teams but had chosen to play for the Fort Worth Cats instead. They have also drafted one player from Puerto Rico: Juan Lebron (1995).

Two of their first-round picks have won World Series championships with the team. Outfielder Willie Wilson (1974) and shortstop Buddy Biancalana (1978) appeared during the Royals' 1985 World Series victory. Zack Greinke (2002) is the only first-round pick of the Royals to earn a Cy Young Award with the team, winning in 2009. Royals' first-round picks have never won Rookie of the Year or Most Valuable Player awards, and no pick has been elected to the Hall of Fame. The Royals have made seven selections in the supplemental round of the draft. They have made the first overall selection in the draft once, in 2006. The club has had 13 compensatory picks since the institution of the First-Year Player Draft in 1965. These additional picks are provided when a team loses a particularly valuable free agent in the prior off-season, or, more recently, if a team fails to sign a draft pick from the previous year. The Royals' first-ever pick, John Simmons (1969), did not sign with the club but they received no compensatory pick.

List of Los Angeles Dodgers first-round draft picks

The Los Angeles Dodgers are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in Los Angeles, California. They play in the National League West division. Since the institution of MLB's Rule 4 Draft, the Dodgers have selected 64 players in the first round. Officially known as the "First-Year Player Draft", the Rule 4 Draft is MLB's primary mechanism for assigning players from high schools, colleges, and other amateur clubs to its franchises. The draft order is determined based on the previous season's standings, with the team possessing the worst record receiving the first pick. In addition, teams which lost free agents in the previous off-season may be awarded compensatory or supplementary picks.Of the 64 players picked in the first round by Los Angeles, 35 have been pitchers, the most of any position; 23 of these were right-handed, while 11 were left-handed. Nine players at shortstop and eight in the outfield were selected, while five catchers, three first basemen, and three third basemen were taken as well. The team also selected two players at second base. Seven of the players came from high schools or universities in the state of Texas, while California follows with six players.

Five Dodgers first-round picks have won a World Series championships with the team. Pitchers Bob Welch (1977) and Steve Howe (1979) played with the 1981 championship team. Shortstop Dave Anderson (1981) and first baseman Franklin Stubbs (1982) were a part of the 1988 championship team. Catcher Mike Scioscia (1976) won championships with both teams. Welch was also on the Oakland Athletics' 1988 team which lost to the Dodgers in the 1988 Series. Howe and Rick Sutcliffe (1974) each won the MLB Rookie of the Year award.The Dodgers have made 11 selections in the supplemental round of the draft and have never made the first overall selection. They have also had 16 compensatory picks since the institution of the First-Year Player Draft in 1965. These additional picks are provided when a team loses a particularly valuable free agent in the prior off-season, or, more recently, if a team fails to sign a draft pick from the previous year. The Dodgers have failed to sign one of their first-round picks, Luke Hochevar (2005), but received no compensation pick.

List of Slovene Americans

This is list of notable Slovene Americans, including both original immigrants who obtained American citizenship and their American descendants.

To be included in this list, the person must have a Wikipedia article showing they are Slovene American or must have references showing they are Slovene American and are notable.

Roger Clemens Award

The Roger Clemens Award was an award that honored the top NCAA Division I college baseball pitcher of the year. The award was created prior to the 2004 season and succeeded the Rotary Smith Award.

"Roger Clemens has become synonymous with excellence in pitching at the professional level, as evidenced by his six Cy Young Awards. In addition to being a fabulous baseball player at every level in which he has participated, his passion for excellence is unsurpassed. He is mindful of giving back to a sport and a community he loves. With his college and professional resume, his name is most worthy and deserving in recognition of the most outstanding college pitcher. The Roger Clemens Award most certainly will become the college equivalent of the Cy Young, therefore becoming one of the most coveted in college baseball." CBPY Board Member Ray Mitchell (February 14, 2004)Roger Clemens was an extremely successful college player with the Texas Longhorns before starting his professional career.

The winner was determined by a vote of all Division I head coaches, selected members of the media, all past winners of the Roger Clemens Award, and all past winners of the Rotary Smith Award. The award was discontinued following the 2008 college baseball season.

Since 2009, the National Pitcher of the Year Award, presented by the College Baseball Foundation, now honors the top NCAA Division I college baseball pitcher of the year.

Sinker (baseball)

In baseball, a sinker or sinking fastball is a type of fastball pitch which has significant downward and horizontal movement and is known for inducing ground balls. Pitchers who use the sinker tend to rely on it heavily and do not need to change pitch speeds as much as other pitchers do because the sinking action induces weak bat contact. Other pitchers normally change pitch speeds to achieve this effect. The sinker is much more often used by right-handed than left-handed pitchers.

Southeastern Conference Baseball Pitcher of the Year

The Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year is a baseball award given to the Southeastern Conference's most outstanding pitcher. The award was first given following the 2003 season. It is selected by the league's head coaches, who are not allowed to vote for their own players.

Tennessee Volunteers baseball

The Tennessee Volunteers baseball team represents the University of Tennessee in NCAA Division I college baseball. Along with most other Tennessee athletic teams, the baseball team participates in the Eastern division of the Southeastern Conference. The Volunteers play all on-campus home games at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.

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