Bullpen Report: June 13, 2017

Tuesday’s slate of games was a quiet one for saves. There were 16 contests in total, but only six relievers emerged with saves. One of them was Tyler Lyons, whose first career save was the result of a scoreless three-inning effort, in which he allowed three hits, walked none and struck out two.

Things were also eerily quiet on the Phillies’ closer front, as we are now a full week removed from when Pete Mackanin suggested that he may use Pat Neshek in the closer’s role over Hector Neris, at least on a temporary basis. They have gone 0-7 since then and have not had a ninth-inning save opportunity during that time. On Monday, they came close, as the Phillies entered the eighth with a 5-4 lead over the Red Sox. The curious thing was that Neshek had already been used in the seventh, and Mackanin brought Joaquin Benoit in to pitch the eighth. Benoit allowed a two-out solo home run to Hanley Ramirez, thus blowing the save as well as the chance for us to see if Neris would come in for the ninth inning.

On Tuesday, the visiting Phillies knotted the Red Sox at 3-3 in the sixth inning, and the score held until the decisive 12th frame. Yet neither Neshek nor Neris made an appearance, and ultimately, Luis Garcia coughed up Andrew Benintendi’s walk-off RBI single. Neris had pitched just once in the past week, so he was presumably available. Neshek appeared in each of the two previous games but threw a combined 13 pitches in those outings.

Mackanin is not using Neshek like a closer of late. Even if he does get some save chances in the days to come, it appears that the Phillies’ manager¬†will be cautious with his usage, so those chances could be shared with Neris or another reliever. This looks like a situation that needs to be avoided if at all possible.

The same can be said about the Nationals’ situation. They did not need a closer on Tuesday, but on Monday, Dusty Baker called on Matt Albers with two outs in the eighth inning and a one-run lead. Albers stranded the two runners left to him by Enny Romero and Jacob Turner, but when he returned for the ninth inning, he gave up a three-run homer to Tyler Flowers. That was Albers’ second blown save in four tries.

Cam Bedrosian made his first rehab appearance in nine days, as he had aggravated his right groin strain. Bedrosian pitched a scoreless inning for Advanced Class A Inland Empire, allowing one hit and striking out two. Meanwhile, Bud Norris preserved the Angels’ 2-2 tie with the Yankees on Tuesday night, pitching a scoreless ninth inning with one hit and one strikeout. In his previous eight outings, Norris had been far from dominant. Though he allowed only two runs over 6 2/3 innings, Norris threw just 57 percent of his pitches for strikes while garnering whiffs on nine percent of his pitches. It’s not a bad time to pick up Bedrosian, particularly if you are a Norris owner.

Jose Leclerc is probably not going to be in line for saves anytime soon, but he is proving once again to be one of the better non-closers to own. In getting his first career win on Tuesday night at Houston, Leclerc showed he is back on track after showing some shaky control upon returning from the DL 10 days ago. In three appearances following that first post-DL outing, Leclerc has induced 14 whiffs on 52 pitches, recording six strikeouts in three innings. For the season, Leclerc has a 1.72 ERA, a 22.8 percent swinging strike rate and a 14.4 K/9 ratio.

Note: The Yankees-Angels game was still in progress at the time of this writing.

Closer Grid:

Closer First Second DL/Minors
ARI Fernando Rodney Archie Bradley JJ Hoover
ATL Jim Johnson Arodys Vizcaino Jose Ramirez
BAL Brad Brach Darren O’Day Mychal Givens Zach Britton
BOS Craig Kimbrel Matt Barnes Heath Hembree Carson Smith
CHC Wade Davis Koji Uehara Carl Edwards Jr.
CWS David Robertson Tommy Kahnle Anthony Swarzak Nate Jones
CIN Raisel Iglesias Michael Lorenzen Drew Storen
CLE Cody Allen Andrew Miller Bryan Shaw
COL Greg Holland Jake McGee Mike Dunn Adam Ottavino
DET Justin Wilson Alex Wilson Shane Greene
HOU Ken Giles Will Harris Michael Feliz
KC Kelvin Herrera Joakim Soria Mike Minor
LAA Bud Norris David Hernandez Blake Parker Cam Bedrosian
LAD Kenley Jansen Pedro Baez Josh Fields
MIA A.J. Ramos David Phelps Kyle Barraclough
MIL Corey Knebel Jacob Barnes Neftali Feliz
MIN Brandon Kintzler Matt Belisle Taylor Rogers Glen Perkins
NYM Addison Reed Jerry Blevins Paul Sewald Jeurys Familia
NYY Dellin Betances Tyler Clippard Adam Warren Aroldis Chapman
OAK Santiago Casilla Ryan Madson Liam Hendriks Sean Doolittle
PHI Hector Neris Pat Neshek Edubray Ramos Joaquin Benoit
PIT Felipe Rivero Juan Nicasio Daniel Hudson
STL Seung Hwan Oh Trevor Rosenthal Matt Bowman
SD Brandon Maurer Brad Hand Ryan Buchter Carter Capps
SF Mark Melancon Derek Law Hunter Strickland
SEA Edwin Diaz James Pazos Nick Vincent
TB Alex Colome Danny Farquhar Tommy Hunter Brad Boxberger
TEX Matt Bush Keone Kela Jose Leclerc
TOR Roberto Osuna Joe Smith Jason Grilli
WSH Matt Albers Shawn Kelley Oliver Perez Koda Glover

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

We hoped you liked reading Bullpen Report: June 13, 2017 by Al Melchior!

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Al Melchior has been writing about Fantasy baseball and sim games since 2000, and his work has appeared at CBSSports.com, BaseballHQ, Ron Shandler's Baseball Forecaster and FanRagSports. He has also participated in Tout Wars' mixed auction league since 2013. You can follow Al on Twitter @almelchiorbb and find more of his work at almelchior.com.

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Ryan DC
Ryan DC

I know Rodney’s peripherals aren’t great but he’s been lights-out for a month, he could probably be green


As a Rodney owner, I have to agree. If those 2 blow-ups earlier this year weren’t enough to oust him, I’m not sure what will be other than if the D’Backs trade for another closer. They seem to prefer Bradley in the set-up role and no one else in that pen is worthy.