Ivan Nova’s circuitous route to success

ALCS Game Thread: Tigers @ Rangers
2012 Draft Order Tracker

If you’re reading this site, than you surely know that two Spring Trainings ago, Ivan Nova was property of the Padres. The Yankees left him off the 40-man roster after the 2008 season, and San Diego took a flier on the right-hander in the Rule 5 Draft. Nova was straight out of Single-A ball at the time and definitely not ready for the big leagues, so the Padres offered him back to the Yankees at the end of camp. Two years later, he was New York’s number two starter in the postseason.

Today at FanGraphs, Josh Goldman looked at other players who were returned to their original team after being selected in the Rule 5 Draft, and found that only one (Randy Wells of the Cubs) had the kind of success Nova had in 2011. We know all about the players who were taken in the Rule 5 Draft and went on to play well for their new club, but it’s not often a player is returned then goes on to have an impact. Remember, every team in baseball had a chance to claim Nova on waivers before he officially back with the Yankees, so it was quite a chain of events that led to him even being in the organization this year.

ALCS Game Thread: Tigers @ Rangers
2012 Draft Order Tracker
  • Monteroisdinero

    A few years ago I saw Nova pitch for Scranton in a game at Durham. Loved his stuff, mechanics, demeanor. I talked to Chris Snyder (I think that’s the spelling) who caught him that night, who said all Nova needed was command, he had everything else.

    He’s improved alot since then.

  • Supernova

    I just hope the forearm injury isn’t a sign of things to come. Since Andy Pettitte we have yet to develop a starting pitcher that has become a long standing successful Yankee. It was going to be Wang, broken foot, screwed up his recovery. It was going to be the big 3- Overworked Hughes, dead arm, ineffective. Jerked Joba around between starter and reliever, TJ surgery, won’t be a starter ever again. Traded away IPK.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    I was sad when the Pads took him, I remember reading the Scout.com stuff on him thinking he might be a good four someday. Of course, I also thought Jairo Heredia could be the five starter…but, hey at least I was right on Nova.

  • kenthadley

    Can someone who knows do a comparison of Nova and Noesi…they both seem to have a similar approach….if Noesi can be another Nova, then the back end of the staff is set for years, and it could allow the more highly rated folks like B & B to really develop.

    • Paul VuvuZuvella (formerly Nuke La Doosh)

      According to Baseball America…Noesi was the better prospect coming into ’11 (rated Yankees 7th best vs Nova at 11th.)

  • Woodrow Sweats

    can anyone provide a list of rule 5 drafters that didn’t get sent back and ended up being good, for those of us who don’t know who they are?