Sorry we missed you most of the weekend, but a lot has happened on the grid so let’s get you updated.
Enrique Burgos had an up and down weekend blowing a save in the 8th inning on Friday, but then earned his first save of the year on Saturday by striking out two and walking one. Jake Barrett and Steve Hathaway loaded the bases for Daniel Hudson in the 8th, who escaped the jam earning the Hold (16). Not a lot of stability in this situation right now, but the grid reflects Burgos as the closer with Hudson next in line for now.
Arodys Vizcaino is back from the DL, but Atlanta wants to ease him back into the role. So even though he is back on the active grid, Jim Johnson and Mauricio Cabrera occupy the 9th and 8th inning roles respectively. Johnson pitched a scoreless 9th on Sunday, but earned the loss on Friday giving up a run in the top of the 9th of a tie game. Vizcaino pitched a scoreless 8th on Saturday with a K and a BB.
The Cubs bullpen had a rough Friday as they placed Hector Rondon on the DL with a right triceps strain (even though the Cubs say it’s precautionary and should be back by early September), and their three top arms right now gave up a combined total of 6 runs (3 earned). Travis Wood gave up 3 runs (2 earned) in his inning of work, while Carl Edwards Jr. earned his first blown save of the year in the 8th. Cubs would then take the lead in the 11th, as Aroldis Chapman took his 3rd blown save of the year and his first as a Cub.
Matt Strahm makes an appearance on the grid for the first time in Kansas City, as the lefty has struck out 15 over 8.1 innings to go with only 3 BBs and 4 hits. His ERA is currently at 1.08 (0.63 FIP) and could be a sneaky Holds pick-up with 2 in 7 games.
A.J. Ramos is back from the DL and pitched a scoreless 8th inning, as Fernando Rodney was given the 9th and held on for the save (24). Right now, Ramos has not been named closer as the Marlins appear to also ease him back in. I don’t see Rodney holding this closer role for much longer (especially after having to escape his own bases loaded jam on Friday) so it would be wise to start stashing Ramos again if he is available. On the flip side, the Marlins could use Ramos in an Andrew Miller type role, which would be detrimental to his role as a saves option. We will keep you updated as the situation progresses.
Steve Cishek was perfect in his first two appearances since returning from the DL, and looks to be next in line behind Edwin Diaz. Tom Wilhelmsen had a disastrous Sunday giving up two homers and a total of four runs to earn the loss and his third blown save of the season. Not sure how much longer he will survive the grid.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]