Bullpen Report: May 8, 2019

Apparently if you get the save against the Blue Jays, they name the building after you. So probably because the portion of the Jays’ lineup that was due up against the Twins called for a lefty reliever, rather than a righty, their home park is not called Parker Centre.

With the Twins up 3-0 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning, Rocco Baldelli summoned Taylor Rogers to handle Justin Smoak (.216 Avg, .135 ISO versus lefties), the right-handed Randal Grichuk (.317 Avg, but a .122 ISO vs. LHP) and Rowdy Tellez. The choice nearly backfired, as Grichuk singled and then Rogers stayed in to face Vladimir Guerrero Jr. after retiring Tellez. Guerrero singled, putting runners on the corners, but Rogers induced a Billy McKinney grounder to end the game.

With Baldelli playing the matchups, both Rogers and Blake Parker should get their share of save opportunities, Currently, Parker holds the team lead in saves over Rogers, six to four.

The Red Sox’s situation may be closer to breaking in favor of one member of its closer tandem. Ryan Brasier had been getting the vast majority of the team’s save chances, but after giving up three runs (two earned) in 0.1 innings against the White Sox last Thursday, he came in to pitch the eighth inning on Tuesday. He ran into trouble again, allowing the Orioles to shave a three-run lead down to a single run, and Matt Barnes was called in to get the final out of the inning against Steve Wilkerson.

The Red Sox built the lead back up to three runs in the top of the ninth, and Barnes remained in the game to get the save. He did issue a one-out walk to Joey Rickard, but in getting Renato Nunez to ground into a double play, Barnes emerged with his third save of the season.

The Angels also feature a closer tandem, or at least I am presuming they still do for the time being. With a 4-2 lead against the Tigers, Ty Buttrey pitched the eighth inning, and with the lead expanded to 5-2, Hansel Robles came in for the ninth inning. Robles allowed just a Niko Goodrum single, so he successfully converted his third save of the season. He and Buttrey each have two save chances since Cody Allen was removed from the closer role, but Buttrey blew his first opportunity, and he received the second one only after Robles had appeared in the Angels’ previous two games. Both relievers have strong skill indicators, but Robles appears to have the upper hand for saves as of now.

Allen was activated from the IL on Tuesday, but he won’t likely join the saves mix anytime soon. Brad Ausmus is open to using Allen in high-leverage situations, but he told reporters that his preference is to ease him back in some “softer situation(s).”

One has to wonder when Anthony Swarzak might start to find himself in some lower-leverage situations. On Tuesday night, he blew a save for the third time in his last six appearances, allowing the Yankees to tie the Mariners on Giovanny Urshela‘s two-run homer. He gave way to Roenis Elias upon giving up Cameron Maybin’s one-out single. After striking out Brett Gardner for the second out, Elias gave up an RBI single to DJ LeMahieu, leaving Swarzak with the loss as well as the blown save.

Despite allowing the critical hit, Elias could be in line to add to his team-leading four saves. After a difficult start to the season, Cory Gearrin has emerged as the Mariners’ most consistent reliever over the last month. He has allowed only two runs over his last 10.2 innings with 14 strikeouts and three walks. At the very least, he could start to see more consistent work in high-leverage situations.

Both the Cubs and Padres balked at using their closers in the top of the ninth inning in a tie game. For the Cubs, it was Steve Cishek, and not Pedro Strop, who pitched against the Marlins in a 2-2 tie. Cishek got the win, with the Kris Bryant hitting a walk-off homer against Adam Conley. It is not yet clear if Strop is officially on the hot seat after blowing a save and taking a loss in Monday’s game against the Marlins.

With the Padres and Mets heading into the ninth inning in a 5-5 tie, it looked as if we might get to see two of the majors’ top closers in the same game. However, Andy Green abstained from using Kirby Yates in a tie game, due to his heavy workload, so Adam Warren came back for a second inning of work. After setting the Mets down in order in the eighth, Warren began the ninth by allowing a Robinson Cano single and Peter Alonso’s home run. That gave Edwin Diaz a two-run lead, so despite a rocky bottom of the ninth, that was enough cushion for a 7-6 Mets win.

Quick hits: Felipe Vazquez (10) and Alex Colome (7) both notched saves on Tuesday night…With the Rangers down by a run, Jose Leclerc pitched the seventh and eight innings against the Pirates, allowing only a walk. However, he induced only one swinging strike in 22 pitches…Blake Treinen (elbow) was available on Tuesday night against the Reds, but Mike Fiers‘ no-hitter rendered the Oakland closer’s presence unnecessary…It is not yet known if Keone Kela (shoulder) will be available for the Pirates on Wednesday against the Rangers…Kelvin Herrera (back) was available for the White Sox on Tuesday, but was not used in the 2-0 win over the Indians…On Tuesday, the Nationals placed Tony Sipp on the IL with an oblique strain. The lefty is the team’s leader in holds with six…Gabriel Ynoa pitched three scoreless innings in relief for the Orioles against the Red Sox. He has now allowed only one run in 11.1 innings since getting called up on April 21. With a stronger reliance on his sinker, Ynoa has compiled a 64.3 percent ground ball rate.

Not Very Stable
Hot Seat
Bullpen Report — 5/8/2019
Team Closer First Up Second Up Minors/DL
ARI Greg Holland Archie Bradley Yoshihisa Hirano
ATL Luke Jackson A.J. Minter Jacob Webb
BAL Mychal Givens Paul Fry Evan Phillips Nathan Karns
BOS Matt Barnes Ryan Brasier Brandon Workman Brian Johnson
CHC Pedro Strop Steve Cishek Brandon Kintzler Brandon Morrow
CWS Alex Colome Kelvin Herrera Jace Fry Nate Jones
CIN Raisel Iglesias Amir Garrett David Hernandez
CLE Brad Hand Nick Wittgren Adam Cimber
COL Wade Davis Scott Oberg Carlos Estevez
DET Shane Greene Joe Jimenez Victor Alcantara
HOU Roberto Osuna Ryan Pressly Hector Rondon
KC Wily Peralta Ian Kennedy Brad Boxberger
LAA Hansel Robles Ty Buttrey Luke Bard
LAD Kenley Jansen Pedro Baez Julio Urias Caleb Ferguson
MIA Sergio Romo Drew Steckenrider Adam Conley
MIL Josh Hader Junior Guerra Jeremy Jeffress
MIN Blake Parker Taylor Rogers Trevor Hildenberger
NYM Edwin Diaz Seth Lugo Robert Gsellman Jeurys Familia
NYY Aroldis Chapman Adam Ottavino Zack Britton Dellin Betances
OAK Blake Treinen Lou Trivino Joakim Soria
PHI Hector Neris Pat Neshek Adam Morgan David Robertson
PIT Felipe Vazquez Kyle Crick Keone Kela Nick Burdi
STL Jordan Hicks Andrew Miller John Gant
SD Kirby Yates Craig Stammen Adam Warren Trey Wingenter
SF Will Smith Tony Watson Reyes Moronta
SEA Anthony Swarzak Roenis Elias Brandon Brennan Hunter Strickland
TB Diego Castillo Jose Alvarado Emilio Pagan
TEX Shawn Kelley Chris Martin Jose LeClerc
TOR Ken Giles Ryan Tepera Joe Biagini
WSH Sean Doolittle Kyle Barraclough Joe Ross

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.

newest oldest most voted

It looked like Diaz walked in the tying run in bottom of 9th, but the ump rang up Hosmer on a bases loaded full count pitch that was about 2 inches out of the strike zone (high and inside). The Mets caught a big break . . .


Gamecast shows that 3-2 pitch as having caught a lot of the zone, really not even all that borderline.

**EDIT: I just watched the pitch and it was a good call. It was a tailing fastball that caught plenty of the plate. Hosmer gave up on it and was upset because of the tenseness of the situation.


That pitch was above the belt. Very few umpires call that high strike. I would be curious what other folks think after reviewing that pitch on mlb.com highlights . . .


Pitch was clearly a strike, boss. And Hosmer is a total doucheclown for complaining about it.