Bullpen Report: September 19, 2019

• After a string of scoreless appearances, Kenley Jansen struggled again last night allowing three baserunners and two runs for his 8th blown save this season. Jansen’s seasonal line (3.81/3.57/3.71/3.19 ERA/FIP/xFIP/SIERA) isn’t particularly bad but it’s far from the relief ace we have grown accustomed too and since July 16th, Jansen has a 5.23 ERA and 3.78 SIERA. Jansen’s job is secure but I’d be more concerned about his status next year. Jansen has a recent history of early season struggles and velocity concerns, and while he has mostly put those in the rear view mirror, if he continues this trend with slightly diminished stuff next year, he may not make it to May as a closer.

• The Rays used 9 pitchers in their win against the Dodgers with Peter Fairbanks getting the save, his second of the year. Fairbanks has great velocity (97.4 mph fastball) and excellent whiff rates in his minors career but he’s unlikely to be a main piece for the remainder of the year in Tampa. However, the Rays traded Nick Solak for Fairbanks at the deadline and he’s an actual prospect out of the bullpen and I wouldn’t be surprised if we hear more about him heading into next year. Emilio Pagan threw two innings last night allowing a Cody Bellinger homer (it happens) but otherwise striking out three batters, has secured the Rays closer job this year but it would be naive to say that he has it locked up to start 2020. With Pagan, Nick Anderson, and a bevvy of talented arms including Fairbanks, the Rays bullpen should be excellent again, even if their bullpen usage frustrates fantasy baseball players.

Raisel Iglesias struck out a pair for his 33rd save of the year. Iglesias has had a fairly turbulent season with the Reds toying with closing committee earlier in the year. Iglesias held on to the job and has netted 33 saves and 86 strikeouts but also has a 4.06 ERA and 11 losses on the year. He’s pitched a bit better than his ERA and he should enter 2020 with a secure hold on the 9th but as the closer in Cincinnati with a high fly ball rate (43.3%) he’s likely to have an inflated ERA.

Matt Magill got the save chance last night with Anthony Bass pitching in the 8th and we have put Magill atop the committee in Seattle. This situation can change tomorrow and whoever is closing likely won’t yield a great amount of saves in the remaining games but it’s Magill in the committee chair for now.

Hansel Robles threw a scoreless inning en route to his 22nd save and how has 15.1 consecutive scoreless inning streak. In that time frame, Robles has 18 strikeouts with three walks and he’s done a great job of finding his home in the 9th in Anaheim. The Mets DFA’d Robles last year during the season and he’s been a great waiver claim for the Angels ever since.

• Right as I was getting a little interested in Jairo Diaz he goes ahead and blows his third save, giving up four runs against the Mets and ballooning his ERA to 4.50. The other options in the Colorado pen aren’t too intriguing and I expect Diaz to still get the remaining opportunities but it’s always good to be reminded to never temper excitement in Colorado, although you might miss out on an Adam Ottavino situation or two.

Quick Hits: Roberto Osuna (35) secured the save for the Astros after Cole went 8 strong innings. Alex Colome (28) who was a surprising hold at the deadline continues to get saves for the White Sox. He’s still under team control next year and should hold onto his familiar job by the spring. Kirby Yates padded his league leading save total with his 41st save, lowering his ERA to 1.21. Yates far and away provided the most value this yer among closers, and although I wouldn’t bank on it next year, he’s undoubtedly a top tier closer. Hector Neris (28) will frustrate on occasion with unforeseen blowups but he’s done a great job settling in as the Phillies closer where seemingly every other reliever on their Opening Day roster has hit the IL. Ken Giles workload is still being managed and Derek Law (5) received the save last night while Archie Bradley (15) received the four-out save for Arizona.

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When he's not focusing on every team's bullpen situation, Ben can be found blogging at Ben's Baseball Bias and on Twitter @BensBias

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so Pirates tie game top 9 go to Kela. Clearest sign we’ve seen yet that he probably is the #1 option for the Pirates now.