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Is 2018 Aaron Nola back?

Aaron Nola has been off to a great start for the Philadelphia Phillies so far this season after a rough 2021 campaign where he just could not get anything going. Nola has a 1-4 record this season with a 3.64 ERA. He has 55 strikeouts on the season.

Now that record can be deceiving, but for some reason the Phillies offense never wants to give Nola run support or they will blow great games he has pitched. Last season, Nola struggled with command of pretty much every pitch and he really wasn't as dominate as we have seen.

With Aaron Nola getting better this season, it really has helped this team a lot, because he can go deep into games and save the bullpen, he helps keep this team in games in which he starts, and he is confusing hitters at the plate which has benefited the team this year.

Is it possible we are starting to see 2018 Aaron Nola come back to life? That season he was an All-Star, finished 3rd in the NL Cy Young voting and finished 13th in National League MVP voting. Nola was down right dominate that year posting a 17-6 record with a 2.37 Earned Run Average (ERA) and posted a whopping 224 strikeouts.

If we can get half of that Aaron Nola into this years Aaron Nola, this team will make a deep run this season. Looking that stats as well from the 2018 season to here, the stats are almost the same. Hitters are currently hitting a measly .216 off of Aaron Nola right now and in 2018 they hit .197 off of Nola. The strikeout percentage is up right now compared to 2018 with Nola striking out nearly 30% of the batters he has faced this year.

Nola is also generating more groundball weak contact this year. That is coming in at 51.3% compared to his 2018 stat line of 49.8%. Can Nola keep this up and return to his 2018 form? We will have to watch and see if Aaron Nola can continue pitching the ball the way he is this season.

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