Bullpen Report: April 18, 2017

• Washington, woof. Both the political arena and the bullpen are a mess right now. Blake Treinen entered the game in the ninth as he normally does and proceeded to allow four baserunners while only recording one out. With the bases loaded, Shawn Kelley came on and got a foul out and a strikeout to end the game for his first save of the year. The silver lining here is that Blake Treinen got his first hold of the year which tells you how useful of a stat that is. Shawn Kelley has been a good reliever for Washington but he never really was given a fair chance to close and I’m not sure if this necessarily changes the calculus.

Either way I’m putting the Nationals situation on red alert. Koda Glover was the early candidate to close games before Treinen was named and it’s possible he could receive a save opportunity soon as well. According to Dusty, the Nationals will likely be making a change at closer and I would go Glover then Kelley but it could be a coin flip. Sidenote: would anyone be surprised if Dusty literally flipped a coin? Whoever ends up receiving the next save opportunities, the Nationals would still need some help in the bullpen so my guess is that the team saves leader may not even be on the team currently. They acquired Mark Melancon last year and they will be linked to any and all trade rumors for saves. You should still go run and pick up Glover and Kelley though.

• That last point conveniently leads us to David Robertson who isn’t young and is getting paid on the White Sox, which means he’s on the block. Robertson’s performance had taken a step back last year but he’s been quite good in 2017. He was less than stellar tonight allowing two walks but he still recorded the final two outs for his fourth save on the year. Those two walks tonight were the first he’s issued this year and he now has 11 strikeouts in 5.2 innings pitched. The White Sox have no need to hold onto him and he’s not an elite option that they should risk holding on to. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Robertson’s name come up in rumors very soon. If/when he moves, expect Nate Jones to be the next in line.

Archie Bradley threw 2.2 innings in his last outing making me think he’s not going to simply slide into a setup role but I added him onto the grid as he might be the best reliever on the team. Fernando Rodney is struggling this year with five walks in 6.1 innings pitched and isn’t too far off from seemingly losing his 10th closing job. In 2012 Rodney was a washed up ex-closer and put up a 0.60 ERA and career best 1.81 BB/9 on the Rays. Since then he’s toggled between a few teams with varying degrees of success but his walk rate ballooned back to 5.10 last year and it’s particularly bad to the start of 2017. If he’s unable to get that in line look for JJ Hoover to get the next shot. I still think the Diamondbacks don’t want to limit Bradley to one inning stints but I added him to the grid nonetheless.

• Normally a scoreless inning and a save would be a solid outing but Seung Hwan Oh allowed three singles in the ninth en route to his second save on the year. Given his struggles thus far, his owners will take a “clean” save but this appearance does little to assuage concerns about him moving forward. His ERA/FIP/xFIP line stands at 8.10/7.25/6.69 on the year. Oh won’t run a .370 BABIP all year but he’s getting fewer grounders than last year and continues to not miss bats – not a good combination. As mentioned last night, the Cardinals will give him a leash but Trevor Rosenthal should start to be targeted for those in need of saves, or really anyone looking for a rising stock.

• We mentioned that Matt Barnes would see the save situation since Kimbrel pitched three days in a row. He didn’t receive a save opp but was called on to finish the game and unfortunately for those who tried to pick up a vulture save, Barnes treated your team to three earned runs in 1.1 innings. This doesn’t change the order of operations for the Sox bullpen but it shows how thin their bullpen is until Tyler Thornburg and Carson Smith return from injury.

Quick Hits: The Phillies had a four run lead but Joaquin Benoit got the final three outs in a scoreless 10th inning against the Mets. There is not all that much to see here but it looks like the Phillies aren’t making any quick hooks after Benoit’s first bad outing earlier. He won’t be spotted many bad outings with Hector Neris waiting in the wings but he’s still the closer for now. Benoit had the save chance because the Mets relief blew another lead here. With that said, Jeurys Familia is en route to NY soon and the pressure is on as the Mets have lost a bevy of close games against inferior competition. I’m a little weary of his walk rate as far as some of the better closers go but his return will be welcomed in Flushing and on fantasy teams. Cam Bedrosian threw two scoreless innings for his third save of the year and I’m beginning to think that if Mike Scioscia actually gives Huston Street a shot to close upon his return, that Scioscia should be fired on the spot.

Closer Grid:

Closer First Second DL/Minors
Arizona Fernando Rodney JJ Hoover Archie Bradley
Atlanta Jim Johnson Arodys Vizcaino Jose Ramirez Mauricio Cabrera
Baltimore Brad Brach Darren O’Day Mychal Givens Zach Britton
Boston Craig Kimbrel Matt Barnes Heath Hembree Carson Smith
CHI (NL) Wade Davis Pedro Strop Koji Uehara
CHI (AL) David Robertsonon Nate Jones Dan Jennings
Cincy Raisel Iglesias Michael Lorenzen Drew Storen
Cleveland Cody Allen Andrew Miller Bryan Shaw
Colorado Greg Holland Adam Ottavino Mike Dunn
Detroit Francisco Rodriguez Justin Wilson Shane Greene
Houston Ken Giles Luke Gregerson Will Harris
KC Kelvin Herrera Joakim Soria Peter Moylan
LAA Cam Bedrosian Blake Parker Yusmeiro Petit Huston Street
LAD Kenley Jansen Sergio Romo Grant Dayton
Miami A.J. Ramos Brad Ziegler Kyle Barraclough
Milwaukee Neftali Feliz Corey Knebel Jacob Barnes
Minnesota Brandon Kintzler Ryan Pressly Matt Belisle Glen Perkins
NY (NL) Addison Reed Fernando Salas Hansel Robles Jeurys Familia
NY (AL) Aroldis Chapman Dellin Betances Tyler Clippard
Oakland Santiago Casilla Sean Doolittle Ryan Dull
Philly Joaquin Benoit Hector Neris Jeanmar Gomez
Pittsburgh Tony Watson Daniel Hudson Felipe Rivero
St. Louis Seung Hwan Oh Trevor Rosenthal Kevin Siegrist
SD Brandon Maurer Ryan Buchter Brad Hand Carter Capps
SF Mark Melancon Hunter Strickland Derek Law
Seattle Edwin Diaz Dan Altavilla Nick Vincent Steve Cishek
TB Alex Colome Danny Farquhar Erasmo Ramirez Brad Boxberger
Texas Matt Bush Jeremy Jeffress Jose Leclerc Sam Dyson
Toronto Roberto Osuna Jason Grilli Joe Biagini
Wash. Koda Glover Shawn Kelley Blake Treinen

[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]

When he's not focusing on every team's bullpen situation, Ben can be found blogging at Ben's Baseball Bias and on Twitter @BensBias

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Twins seem to be another team jumping on the multi-inning reliever train, with Tyler Duffey logging 2.2 innings last night and Rule 5er Justin Haley with three tonight. Duffey /might/ be worth a look in deeper leagues if you want a reliever with a lot of innings plus possible starter eligibility, as he looked flatly dominant out of the pen last night with 4/0 K/BB against one hit (7/1 against 5 over 8.2 on the season). Haley looks shaky despite his nasty crossfire curveball, though.