Bullpen Report: August 7, 2020

The 2020 version of Bullpen Report includes six different sections, as well as the closer chart, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

  1. Notable Workloads: Primary closers or valuable members of a closer committee who have been deemed unavailable or likely unavailable for the current day due to recent workload.
  2. Injury News 
  3. Outlier Saves: Explanation for a non-closer earning a save during the previous day.
  4. Committee Clarity: Notes on a closer committee that clarify a pitcher’s standing in the group.
  5. Losing A Grip: Struggling closers who could be on the hot seat.
  6. Reliever On The Rise: Non-closer who is quickly moving up the depth chart based on potential and recent performance.

The “RosterResource” link will take you to the corresponding team’s RosterResource depth chart, which will give you a better picture of the full bullpen and results of the previous six days (pitch count, save, hold, win, loss, blown save.)

Notable Workloads

Brandon Kintzler, MIA: Three consecutive days; 15 pitches on Thursday. | RosterResource

Brad Boxberger and Richard Bleier are candidates for a save chance on Friday versus the Mets.

Hector Neris, PHI: Back-to-back days; 27 pitches on Thursday. | RosterResource

Neris only threw one pitch on Wednesday, but it’s the 27 he threw on Thursday that puts his availability in doubt on Friday versus the Braves. Tommy Hunter and Adam Morgan would appear to be the most likely candidates for a save chance if Neris can’t go.


Injury News

Will Smith, ATL | RosterResource

Despite signing Smith to a three-year, $40 million contract early in free agency, the Braves declared Mark Melancon as their closer during Spring Training in March. But there was no doubt that Smith, who saved 34 games while posting a 2.76 ERA and 13.2 K/9 for the Giants in 2019, would get at least the occasional save chance even if he didn’t take the job from Melancon. After missing Summer Camp, the 31-year-old will now likely have to make two or three lower-leverage outings before he takes over as the team’s primary setup man.

Outlier Saves




Committee Clarity



Losing A Grip

Craig Kimbrel, CHC | RosterResource

In his first “garbage time” appearance on the season — the Cubs were trailing 12-0 to the Royals in the eighth inning — Kimbrel allowed a triple, walk, and RBI single before settling down and retiring the next three batters in order. The 32-year-old, who the team is working with on his mechanics, still has a long ways to go before manager David Ross can trust him again.

Ryan Pressly, HOU | RosterResource

Slowed by elbow soreness, Pressly didn’t make his first appearance until the Astros’ eighth game of the season. And it didn’t go all that well. He allowed a run on two hits and a walk before he was removed with two outs. By the time he made his second appearance on Thursday, he was the team’s closer “by default” with Roberto Osuna out indefinitely with an elbow injury. In to protect a 4-3 lead in the ninth, the 31-year-old walked the leadoff hitter before a pair of singles loaded the bases. Kole Calhoun followed with a walk-off double.

As long as Pressly, an All-Star in 2019, is healthy, he’ll likely get a chance to bounce back. The lone non-rookie in the bullpen is Josh James, who was an integral part of the team’s 2019 bullpen. He was just moved out of the rotation, however, after walking 11 batters in six innings over two starts. Needless to say, he’s not an immediate option to close out games. If there is an Astros reliever who can be trusted with the game on the line at this point, it’s lefty Blake Taylor, who has 10 strikeouts over 8.2 scoreless innings.

Reliever On The Rise

Rafael Dolis, TOR | RosterResource

As teammate Jordan Romano continues to be one of the most impressive relief pitchers in baseball — he has not allowed a run or hit in six innings — Dolis is quietly making a smooth transition back to the major leagues after pitching for the Hanshin Tigers in Japan over the past four seasons.

When he last pitched in the majors way back in 2013 with the Cubs, Dolis threw a fastball and slider. Seven years later, he still throws a fastball and slider, both at around the same speed (94 MPH fastball, 83 MPH slider). But he’s added a new pitch to his repertoire — a mid-80’s split-fingered fastball that he’s thrown about 20% of the time.


The 32-year-old Dolis has allowed just one earned run over five innings, including four strikeouts and three holds. He’s not going to move past Romano as the team’s “next-in-line” for save opportunities, but he should continue to get high-leverage work in the seventh and eighth innings.


Not Very Stable
Hot Seat
Bullpen Report — 8/6/2020
Team Closer First Up Second Up Injured List
ARI Archie Bradley Junior Guerra Andrew Chafin
ATL Mark Melancon Will Smith Shane Greene
BAL Cole Sulser Mychal Givens Miguel Castro Hunter Harvey
BOS Brandon Workman Matt Barnes Heath Hembree
CHC Rowan Wick Jeremy Jeffress Kyle Ryan
CWS Alex Colome Aaron Bummer Evan Marshall
CIN Raisel Iglesias Amir Garrett Michael Lorenzen
CLE Brad Hand James Karinchak Nick Wittgren
COL Jairo Diaz Carlos Estevez Yency Almonte Wade Davis
DET Joe Jimenez Buck Farmer Gregory Soto
HOU Ryan Pressly Blake Taylor Josh James Roberto Osuna
KC Greg Holland Trevor Rosenthal Ian Kennedy
LAA Ty Buttrey Felix Peña Keynan Middleton
LAD Kenley Jansen Blake Treinen Pedro Baez
MIA Brandon Kintzler Brad Boxberger Richard Bleier
MIL Josh Hader Corey Knebel Freddy Peralta
MIN Taylor Rogers Sergio Romo Trevor May
NYM Seth Lugo Justin Wilson Jeurys Familia
NYY Zack Britton Adam Ottavino Chad Green Aroldis Chapman
OAK Liam Hendriks Joakim Soria Yusmeiro Petit
PHI Hector Neris Tommy Hunter Adam Morgan David Robertson
PIT Richard Rodriguez Chris Stratton Chad Kuhl Keone Kela
STL Ryan Helsley Giovanny Gallegos Andrew Miller
SD Kirby Yates Drew Pomeranz Emilio Pagan
SF Trevor Gott Tony Watson Tyler Rogers Reyes Moronta
SEA Carl Edwards Jr. Taylor Williams Dan Altavilla Austin Adams
TB Nick Anderson Jose Alvarado Oliver Drake
TEX Edinson Volquez Jonathan Hernandez Nick Goody Jose LeClerc
TOR Anthony Bass Jordan Romano Rafael Dolis Ken Giles
WSH Daniel Hudson Tanner Rainey Sean Doolittle Will Harris

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3 years ago

It just does not seem at all accurate or informative to completely omit Edwin Diaz from the chart. He seems quite likely to be given another crack at the closer job by the Mets very soon.

3 years ago
Reply to  Jason Martinez

I wouldn’t say he isn’t part of it. I’d say he gets a save soon.

3 years ago
Reply to  Jason Martinez

Could definitely see Houston making calls on Diaz with the situation in their pen and the relative dearth of top-flight closers who might be available. Hard to see them rushing toward a reunion with Giles, even if he’s healthy. And outside of Jimenez, it’s not clear anyone anyone will be much of an upgrade. Givens? Guys from Miami, SF or Texas? Hmm…

3 years ago
Reply to  Jason Martinez

Sure, I agree. His last two outings have recorded one base runner, no runs, and 3ks in 2ip. Small sample, but it always is a small sample with relief pitchers. Mostly I am saying he could be back to being the closer as soon as today. I wouldn’t be surprised however if they continue to run Lugo out there even when Diaz is back to old Diaz on occasion for longer outings, etc.