Bullpen Report: Sunday, May 3, 2015

Jordan Walden was placed on the 15 DL by the Cardinals on Sunday morning. He’d pitched only once in the past nine games. Sam Tuivailala has been recalled from Memphis to fill the hole in the pen. He’s had a WHIP of 1.00 and struck out 12 in nine innings as the closer for the Redbirds. I don’t think it makes a big pile of sense to run out and grab him, because Tyler Lyons will be activated on Tuesday, and Tuivailala is likely going back to Memphis to make that happen. Seth Maness and Matt Belisle will likely be leaned on a little more to help set up Trevor Rosenthal, with Kevin Siegrist spotting in against lefties, like he did today coming in for Belisle to face Pedro Alvarez with two outs in the eighth. Rosenthal had pitched on Friday and Saturday and in three of the last four, so there was zero chance of him coming in for a four-out save after Siegrist walked Alvarez to bring up Jordy Mercer. With Mitch Harris warming in the pen, and Tuivailala sitting on a bench, Siegrist fanned Mercer. The Cards are in the midst of a stretch of 20 straight days with no off days, and the pen is going to need all hands on deck. The 14 inning game may necessitate another move tomorrow to get a fresh arm in the Cards pen. Tuivailala pitched two innings and Rosenthal pitched his third day in a row(giving up a homer to Jung-Ho Kang in the process). You would have to think that neither of them would be available Monday.

Brandon Gomes, Steve Geltz and Kevin Jepsen struggled to get the lead to Brad Boxberger, as they combined to surrender four runs in the sixth and seventh innings, allowing Tommy Hunter, Darren O’Day and Zach Britton to grab the win, hold and save respectively for the visiting/hosting Orioles. O’Day was particularly impressive, overcoming an Everth Cabrera throwing error and striking out two before he gave way to Britton with two out in the eighth. That was Britton’s fifth save.

Chad Qualls got Sunday off for the Astros. Pat Neshek struck out two Mariners in a perfect eighth. Luke Gregerson didn’t look incredibly sharp, but he did get Brad Miller to ground into a game-ending double play for his sixth save and the Astros tenth straight win. He needed the DP because he had walked, uh, Rickie Weeks?

The triumvirate of Will Smith, Johnathan Broxton, and Francisco Rodriguez haven’t really had a pile of opportunities to pitch many high-leverage innings for the disappointing Brewers this year. Being in the bottom five in the majors in both runs for and runs against isn’t exactly a recipe for tight games. It’s still fun to watch K-Rod throw more than half his pitches up there as changeups, and see the swings that he generates with it. The Brewers have seven wins, and he’s saved four of them. If you’re a K-Rod owner, take solace in the fact that he’s doubling Tyler Clippard in the save department. Unless, of course, you own him too. Sorry. I’m not sorry that Pedro Strop got the loss, giving up three hits and two earned runs. Just because I said in Friday’s Bullpen Report that he hadn’t given up a hit in weeks, doesn’t mean that I’m the reason he had a shaky outing. And honestly, if I possess those powers, would I be using them on Strop? Zac Rosscup had another perfect inning, quietly bringing his ERA under 1.00 on the season. And no, he’s not giving up four runs tomorrow just because he’s being lauded here. His fastball velocity is the same as last year, but his slider has become a little harder, as he’s added two ticks to it this year and increased the vertical movement on the pitch. He’s rocking a 32.2% K-BB% this year and has become quite the weapon for Joe Maddon.

Yimi Garcia filled the standard closer role by pitching the top of the ninth in a tie game at home, putting to rest any ridiculous rumblings that he’d been supplanted by Chris Hatcher. More on that in the Saturday notes at the end of the Bullpen Report. The Dodger pen just continued to show off its jewels by sending lefty Adam Liberatore out for the eighth after Pedro Baez struck out the side in a perfect seventh. He’s given up one baserunner in over seven innings of work. He’s fashioned a 31.8% K% so far. He’s just another stud in that ridiculous pen. Oh, and they get Kenley Jansen back soon.

Of Note: All signs point to Greg Holland being activated and available on Tuesday. Roster him with confidence this week. Drew Storen picked up his seventh save of the year and finished off the Nats second consecutive 1-0 victory over the Mets. It was the first time in 42 years that the Mets had been shut out 1-0 on consecutive days by the same team. Joakim Soria pitched a perfect ninth against the Royals for his tenth save. Craig Kimbrel got his eighth save on the year, so it’s just another normal season for him. Well, except that he gave up another earned run and his ERA is over 5 now.

Notes from Saturday: Chris Hatcher got the save on Saturday and Yimi Garcia pitched the eighth. This doesn’t necessitate any movement to the grid, however, as Garcia got the nod to cut through the heart of the Diamondback lineup in A.J. Pollock, Paul Goldschmidt and Mark Trumbo. Dellin Betances struck out all four batters he faced for his first save of the year. If only this was something we could’ve had in the bullpen report on Opening Day.

Closer Grid:


Closer First Second DL/Minors
Arizona Addison Reed Brad Ziegler Evan Marshall
Atlanta Jason Grilli Jim Johnson Luis Avilan
Baltimore Zach Britton Darren O’Day Tommy Hunter
Boston Koji Uehara Junichi Tazawa Edward Mujica
CHI (NL) Hector Rondon Pedro Strop Jason Motte
CHI (AL) David Robertson Jacob Petricka Zach Duke
Cincy Aroldis Chapman Jumbo Diaz Tony Cingrani Sean Marshall
Cleveland Cody Allen Bryan Shaw Scott Atchison
Colorado John Axford Rafael Betancourt Boone Logan Adam Ottavino
Detroit Joakim Soria Al Alburquerque Joba Chamberlain Joe Nathan
Houston Luke Gregerson Chad Qualls Pat Neshek
KC Wade Davis Kelvin Herrera Ryan Madson Greg Holland
LAA Huston Street Joe Smith Vinnie Pestano
LAD Yimi Garcia Chris Hatcher Pedro Baez Kenley Jansen
Miami Steve Cishek A.J. Ramos Mike Dunn
Milwaukee Francisco Rodriguez Jonathan Broxton Will Smith
Minnesota Glen Perkins Brian Duensing Blaine Boyer Casey Fien
NY (NL) Jeurys Familia Carlos Torres Buddy Carlyle Jenrry Mejia
NY (AL) Andrew Miller Dellin Betances David Carpenter
Oakland Tyler Clippard Evan Scribner Dan Otero Sean Doolittle
Philly Jonathan Papelbon Ken Giles Luis Garcia
Pittsburgh Mark Melancon Tony Watson Arquimedes Caminero
St. Louis Trevor Rosenthal Seth Maness Matt Belisle Jordan Walden
SD Craig Kimbrel Joaquin Benoit Dale Thayer
SF Santiago Casilla Sergio Romo Jeremy Affeldt
Seattle Fernando Rodney Danny Farquhar Yoervis Medina
TB Brad Boxberger Kevin Jepsen Ernesto Frieri Jake McGee
Texas Neftali Feliz Shawn Tolleson Keone Kela Tanner Scheppers
Toronto Brett Cecil Aaron Loup Roberto Osuna Steve Delabar
Wash. Drew Storen Aaron Barrett Blake Treinen Casey Janssen

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

Darren contributes to RotoGraphs when he isn’t watching the Braves or shoveling snow. Follow him on Twitter @shinesie.

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In a saves/holds league, would you take Chris Martin or Pedro Baez?


Sorry, I meant Cody Martin.