Yardley, 29, made his MLB debut with San Diego in 2019. The Seattle University grad went undrafted and pitched in the independent Pecos League out of college before signing on with the Padres as a minor league free agent. He’s been in their system since 2013 and long posted sharp numbers without getting a call to the big leagues.
That changed this past season, as Yardley parlayed a 2.83 ERA, 7.4 K/9, 2.0 BB/9, 0.42 HR/9 and 63.8 percent ground-ball rate in the extremely hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League into his first taste of the Major Leagues. The 6’0″, 165-pound sidearmer acquitted himself well, too, allowing just three earned runs on 12 hits and three walks with seven strikeouts in 11 2/3 innings.
As with many sidearm pitchers, Yardley isn’t going to blow anyone away with velocity. His sinker checked in at an average of just 86.2 mph in the Majors this season. But, as has been the case in Triple-A (both this season and in years past), Yardley was a ground-ball machine with the Padres, inducing grounders at a 64.1 percent clip in his limited sample of work.