Bullpen Report: July 30, 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.
  1. Losing A Grip: Struggling closers who could be on the hot seat.
  2. 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 Workman, BOS: Back-to-back days; 30 pitches on Wednesday. | RosterResource

Matthew Barnes is the leading candidate for a save chance if Workman is not available on Thursday versus the Mets.

Brad Hand, CLE: Back-to-back days; 22 pitches on Wednesday. | RosterResource

Nick Wittgren and James Karinchak are the leading candidates for a save chance if Hand is not available on Thursday versus the Twins.

Joe Jimenez, DET: Back-to-back days; 4 of last 5 days; 12 pitches on Wednesday. | RosterResource

Buck Farmer (back-to-back games; 10 pitches on Wednesday) is the leading candidate for a save chance if Jimenez is not available on Thursday versus the Royals. If Farmer is not available, Gregory Soto and Jose Cisnero could be next in line.

Kenley Jansen, LAD: Back-to-back days; 3 of last 4 days; 23 pitches on Wednesday. | RosterResource

Blake Treinen (back-t0-back days; 14 pitches on Wednesday) is the leading candidate for a save chance if Jansen is not available on Thursday versus the Diamondbacks. If Treinen is not available, Joe Kelly could be next in line.


Injury News

Chris Devenski and Ryan Pressly, HOU: Both unavailable on Wednesday due to elbow soreness. | RosterResource

Devenski (unavailable on Tuesday or Wednesday) and Pressly (yet to pitch in 2020) have avoided the Injured List thus far. With a 10-man bullpen, the Astros’ aren’t short on options. But every one of them, aside from Devenski, Pressly, and closer Roberto Osuna, are rookies.

Jose Leclerc, TEX: Unavailable on Wednesday due to shoulder tightness. | RosterResource

Leclerc was warming up in the bottom of the eighth in anticipation of a save opportunity in Wednesday’s game, but sat down before the inning ended as the Rangers pulled ahead. Instead of Leclerc, it was Nick Goody who came on for the save opportunity in the ninth.

More information on the severity of Leclerc’s injury will be available on Thursday. For what it’s worth, he was unavailable for a game in late May of 2019 for the same reason and came back to pitch the following day.

Outlier Saves

Nick Goody, TEX | RosterResource

As the Rangers rallied in the eighth to overcome a 4-2 deficit, Leclerc was getting ready for the ninth before experiencing shoulder tightness. It was Goody, therefore, who was called upon to hold a 7-4 lead. He sat the Diamondbacks down in order to pick up his first career save.

If it was known before the game that Leclerc would not be able to pitch, it could’ve very well been Jonathan Hernandez, who pitched the eight, or the veteran Jesse Chavez, who pitched the seventh, in line for the save chance. But considering that both pitchers struggled on Wednesday and the 29-year-old Goody got the job done, it’s possible that manager Chris Woodward will feel comfortable sticking with him if Leclerc is forced to miss time.


Committee Clarity

Ian Kennedy, KCR | RosterResource

Kennedy’s first appearance of 2020 came in the sixth inning of a tie game on Saturday. In his second game on Wednesday, he entered another tie game in the seventh inning.

Clearly, the 35-year-old is not the team’s primary closer despite saving 30 games in 2019. With the return of Greg Holland, who has one save in three scoreless innings, it’s possible that he has reclaimed the job that he held with the team between 2012-2015. Or it could be a committee, which likely includes fellow reclamation project Trevor Rosenthal and second-year reliever Scott Barlow.

Taylor Rogers and Sergio Romo, MIN | RosterResource

A day after Romo made his 2020 debut with a save over the Cardinals, Rogers did the same with a 1-2-3 ninth (2 K, 11 pitches) to finish off a 3-o shutout on Wednesday. Despite Romo getting first crack at a save chance, he entered Wednesday’s game in the seventh inning. In the meantime, Rogers has earned a save in 13 of his last 15 regular season appearances going back to last August.

Dan Altavilla, SEA | RosterResource

Ahead by three runs in the ninth, the Mariners gave Altavilla his first shot as part of the team’s closer committee. After striking out David Fletcher and allowing a double to Mike Trout, he retired Anthony Rendon and Shohei Ohtani to close out the 10-7 win and pick up his first career save. Taylor Williams, who earned the team’s first save of 2020 on Sunday, pitched the seventh inning with his team up by one run.

Oliver Drake, TBR | RosterResource

If you thought Drake’s first two appearances of 2020 were an indication of things to come — the Rays were ahead by three runs in the ninth inning of both game — you were incorrect. The 33-year-old was brought in with the game on the line on Wednesday, trying to hold a one-run lead over the Braves with a runner on base and one out. But it was the sixth inning, not the ninth. And he allowed the inherited run to score, as well as one of his own.


Losing A Grip

Craig Kimbrel, CHC | RosterResource


Edwin Diaz, NYM | RosterResource

Diaz hasn’t pitched since Saturday, but it’s notable that Seth Lugo was brought in to pitch the seventh inning of Wednesday’s game with the Mets ahead 3-2 versus the Red Sox. If Lugo and Justin Wilson had held the Red Sox in check — Lugo allowed the tying run and Wilson allowed three more in the eighth — it’s very likely that Diaz would’ve gotten a chance to redeem himself in the ninth.


Reliever On The Rise

Kodi Whitley, STL | RosterResource

With news that starting pitcher Miles Mikolas will undergo season-ending flexor tendon surgery, it’s unlikely that Carlos Martinez will be returning to a relief role anytime soon. It also means that Daniel Ponce de Leon, who has the potential to make an impact in the late innings, is back in the rotation.  This certainly leaves an opening for someone else to emerge as a breakout candidate in an unsettled Cardinals’ bullpen. That someone else could be Whitley, who is ranked as the 15th best prospect in the organization.

It’s only two games, but the rookie right-hander has made a strong early impression. He’s retired all eight batters he’s faced, including the heart of the Twins’ batting order on Wednesday.

Here’s a mid-nineties fastball to strike out Adam Frazier on Sunday …


And here’s a breaking ball to strike out Miguel Sano on Wednesday …

The 25-year-old appears to have an uphill climb to become a high-leverage reliever for the Cardinals, but things can change quickly. As long as he continues to get outs when he’s called on, he’ll be on the periphery of a late-inning role.


Not Very Stable
Hot Seat
Bullpen Report — 7/29/2020

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for the Nats I think Hudson right now is clear closer, and not even sure if Doo is 2nd. last outing he came on in the 7th inning and Harris was next in the 8th. And Rainey is closing quickly.