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Eovaldi gives Marlins two fireballing starters

Eovaldi gives Marlins two fireballing starters

Eovaldi gives Marlins two fireballing starters

SAN FRANCISCO -- Any questions about Nathan Eovaldi's arm strength were quickly put to rest in his first start since being reinstated from the disabled list.

On Tuesday in a no-decision at Arizona, the Marlins right-hander had his fastball max out at 99 mph.

Eovaldi's amped-up velocity was highly encouraging, especially when you consider he opened the season on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation.

"I'm not going out there trying to throw as hard as I can -- 100 percent full-out," Eovaldi said. "I'm not trying to overdo it. I'm going out there trying to compete. I guess the ball is coming out a little easier. I feel like my timing is right. I feel if my timing is right and my mechanics are right, good things will come."

According to the FanGraphs website, Eovaldi's fastball averaged 96.9 mph, an increase from the 94.1 mph he averaged in 2012.

"I think Eovaldi gives us another power guy who can go out there and eat up innings," manager Mike Redmond said.

With Eovaldi in the rotation, the Marlins now have two power arms. The 23-year-old joins 20-year-old Jose Fernandez, who averages 94.7 mph with his fastball.

"Power arms are power arms," Redmond said. "That's good stuff. That's what we're looking for. It's nice to have guys come in and throw 96-97. They give us a chance to be really good because they can make mistakes and get away with them. Some guys don't have that ability."

Eovaldi feels the strengthening drills he did during his rehabilitation are part of why he is throwing harder. As maintenance, he is continuing to do band work and icing like he had before.

"I think a lot of it comes from that, learning different ways of taking care of my shoulder, with different workouts, icing more," he said. "I don't know if it has anything to do with it or not. But I feel it definitely has made a difference.

"Because it has made me feel good, and helped me get back to being healthy, why not keep it strong?"

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter Less

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