Bullpen Report: August 9, 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

Trevor Rosenthal, KCR: Back-to-back days; 17 pitches on Saturday. | RosterResource

If Rosenthal doesn’t pitch for a third consecutive day on Sunday, Greg Holland (back-to-back days; but only 8 pitches on Saturday), Scott Barlow, and Ian Kennedy are options for a save chance. If healthy, Josh Staumont could also be in the mix. He was unavailable on Saturday with back tightness.

Liam Hendriks, OAK: Back-to-back days; 4 of last 5 days; 14 pitches on Saturday. | RosterResource

Joakim Soria will likely be the closer on Sunday.

Rafael Montero, TEX: Back-to-back days; 12 pitches on Saturday. | RosterResource

Although they were easy outings, Montero will likely get a day off after pitching on his first two days back from the Injured List. Jonathan Hernandez could be in line for a save chance on Sunday.

Daniel Hudson, WSN: 26 on Saturday. | RosterResource

Tanner Rainey could get a save chance on Sunday if Hudson isn’t available.


Injury News


Outlier Saves



Committee Clarity

Miguel Castro, BAL | RosterResource

After Cole Sulser picked up the team’s first three saves of the season, manager Brandon Hyde changed things up on Saturday. With the O’s up 5-3 in the eighth, Sulser pitched a scoreless inning for his first hold. Miguel Castro, my pick for “Reliever On The Rise” a few days ago, got the call in the ninth. He not only picked up his first save of 2020, he also extended his scoreless streak to 7.1 innings. Here’s what Hyde said about the move …

Had the Orioles not taken the lead in the top of the eighth, Sulser’s only chance to get some work might’ve been in the bottom of the eighth. Castro’s emergence, however, does give Hyde multiple options to close out games.

Trevor Rosenthal, KCR | RosterResource

This is what I wrote about Rosenthal and the Royals yesterday …

“Rosenthal has gotten the last two save chances for the Royals, picking up his 123rd career save on Friday. After his first save of the season last Thursday, the Royals went on a six-game losing streak.

Greg Holland, who has the team’s only other save, entered Friday’s game in the fifth inning with his team down by a run. It’s a strong indication that this committee might not be much of a committee, considering that Holland had appeared to be Rosenthal’s top competition for saves.”

On Saturday, manager Mike Matheny went to Holland early again (6th inning) and entrusted Rosenthal to lock down the final four outs on Saturday. He closed out his third save with a strikeout of Nelson Cruz, inducing a swing-and-miss of an 89 MPH changeup that followed a 99 MPH fastball.

Edwin Diaz, NYM | RosterResource

This is what I wrote about Diaz and the Mets yesterday …

“After a third consecutive scoreless outing on Friday, a 1-2-3 ninth inning (2 K) with his team trailing the Marlins by a run, it is likely that Diaz will return to the closer’s role in the very near future or, at the least, he could become part of the closer committee with Seth Lugo and company.

By not committing either way, manager Luis Rojas could remove some pressure from the 26-year-old when he gets his next save chance. If Diaz executes, the job is likely his again whether he’s anointed as the “closer” or not.”

Diaz didn’t pitch on Saturday, but he began warming in the ninth with his team leading 8-4 and Justin Wilson having put two runners on base with two outs. Wilson struck out the next batter to end the game. If he hadn’t, there was a strong chance that Diaz would enter in a save situation.

Rafael Montero, TEX | RosterResource

Montero’s 2020 debut on Friday was so impressive, he made it to Pitching Ninja with this strikeout of Mike Trout to end the game …

He also got another save chance on Saturday — no strikeouts, but an easy 1-2-3 inning — and appears to have quickly separated himself from the so-called closer committee that hadn’t established itself since Jose Leclerc’s injury last week.


Losing A Grip



Reliever On The Rise

Tanner Rainey, WSN | RosterResource

Traded from the Reds to the Nationals prior to the 2019 season, Rainey had his ups and downs as a rookie. Unsurprisingly, he wasn’t the answer to the team’s bullpen struggles that forced them to acquire three relievers at the trade deadline. Daniel Hudson season-saving performance down the stretch actually overshadowed Rainey’s impressive numbers over his final 14 appearances of the regular season (2.63 ERA, 13.2 IP, 8 BB, 22 K).

That success has carried over into 2020, which has helped offset the struggles of Sean Doolittle and a groin injury to Will Harris. After a scoreless inning on Saturday, the 27-year-old has allowed just one run on one hit in 6.2 innings with two walks and nine strikeouts.

While he had a couple of shaky outings in the World Series, his team did emerge with a championship ring. So, he’s battled-tested and armed with a 100 MPH fastball and 90 MPH slider …


Not Very Stable
Hot Seat
Bullpen Report — 8/8/2020
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 Miguel Castro Mychal Givens Hunter Harvey
BOS Brandon Workman Matt Barnes Heath Hembree
CHC Rowan Wick Jeremy Jeffress Kyle Ryan
CWS Alex Colome Evan Marshall Jimmy Cordero Aaron Bummer
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 Trevor Rosenthal Scott Barlow Greg Holland
LAA Ty Buttrey Felix Peña Keynan Middleton
LAD Kenley Jansen Blake Treinen Pedro Baez
MIA Brandon Kintzler Brad Boxberger Nick Vincent Richard Bleier
MIL Josh Hader Corey Knebel Freddy Peralta
MIN Taylor Rogers Sergio Romo Trevor May
NYM Edwin Diaz Seth Lugo Justin Wilson
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 Geoff Hartlieb Keone Kela
STL Giovanny Gallegos Andrew Miller John Gant Ryan Helsley
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 Rafael Montero Jonathan Hernandez Edinson Volquez Jose LeClerc
TOR Anthony Bass Jordan Romano Rafael Dolis Ken Giles
WSH Daniel Hudson Tanner Rainey Javy Guerra Will Harris

We hoped you liked reading Bullpen Report: August 9, 2020 by Jason Martinez!

Please support FanGraphs by becoming a member. We publish thousands of articles a year, host multiple podcasts, and have an ever growing database of baseball stats.

FanGraphs does not have a paywall. With your membership, we can continue to offer the content you've come to rely on and add to our unique baseball coverage.

Support FanGraphs

newest oldest most voted

Kudos to Castro, but not sure we’ve seen a definitive “move away from Sulser as the primary closer” yet based on this tweet from MLB.com Orioles writer Joe Trezza: “Brandon Hyde said Cole Sulser got the 8th today because he hadn’t thrown in five days and was pitching regardless, and was originally warming when the O’s were down. Then Castro got the ninth over Givens.”