Welcome back to the newest edition of our Reliever Ranks series! This will bring you up-to-date bullpen depth charts every morning for the day’s games and makes for an excellent tool for those looking to stream saves or wins. This series runs seven days a week, so check in every morning to get your daily bullpen fix!
Transaction and Schedule Notes
- All 30 teams were once again on the field for Wednesday action. The Dodgers, Mets, A’s, and Giants are the only teams that have today off, while 14 teams will anticipate an off day on Monday.
- Arizona opens a new series in St. Louis today, but they arrive with perhaps the most depleted bullpen of any team.
- The Braves, Cubs, Red Sox, and Astros all tapped into their bullpen heavily on Wednesday.
- The A’s and Giants did too, but the off day will save them today.
- SEA: Activated closer Paul Sewald from COVID-19 IL
- COL: Optioned middle reliever Lucas Gilbreath to Triple-A (recalled starter Ryan Feltner)
- CIN: Middle reliever Justin Wilson placed on 10-day IL
- There weren’t any saves or holds to be had in the day game between the Cardinals and Mets, but there was some scuffling going on when the benches cleared in the eighth. St. Louis called upon three relievers for a combined five innings; Ryan Helsley posted a scoreless ninth and now has six shutout appearances (6 1/3 IP) on the year. Cardinals closer Giovanny Gallegos hasn’t thrown since a blown save on Monday and he could easily find himself in a save situation against Arizona today.
- The Mets pitched a combined 4 1/3 innings with mainly back-end relievers on Wednesday. Chasen Shreve lowered his season ERA to a 2.35 and he could be a candidate for holds at his current pace. Edwin Diaz received a much-needed day of rest after back-to-back saves on Monday and Tuesday.
- Despite a four-run lead, the White Sox still earned a save on Wednesday. Kendall Graveman was the recipient, tossing two innings of four-strikeout work and lowering his season ERA to a 1.74 (10 1/3 IP). He could be a strong candidate for saves and holds right now as Liam Hendriks works out some back discomfort.
- None of Kansas City’s top relievers (Barlow, Staumont, Garrett, Coleman, Snider) had thrown since Sunday. Scott Barlow and Collin Snider did not take well to the extended rest; they combined to pitch a single inning on Wednesday while allowing three hits, three earned runs, a walk, and a home run. Snider threw 20 pitches in 2/3 of an inning, while Barlow threw nine.
- Arizona’s win over the Dodgers didn’t come without some bullpen turbulence; Ian Kennedy was credited with a blown save in the eighth inning, allowing one run on two hits. The Diamondbacks would regain the lead in time for a save situation for Mark Melancon; he tossed a perfect ninth and tallied his fourth save of the year. Both Melancon and Kennedy were pitching on back-to-back days, so the St. Louis opener today could require Noe Ramirez and Joe Mantiply holding it down.
- The Dodgers had Phil Bickford and Daniel Hudson toss one inning apiece. That was the extent of their bullpen work on Wednesday; Hudson allowed two runs (one earned), but his ERA remains a 1.35 on the year, and hold opportunities will not be a foreseeable issue at his current pace. Craig Kimbrel will be fresh today having not pitched since Sunday.
- The Brewers and Pirates were both on no-hitter watch for much of Wednesday. Milwaukee prevailed in a one-hit effort, allowed only by starter Aaron Ashby. He also walked five guys in 5 2/3 innings, so a decent chunk of innings was covered by relievers in lieu of starter pitch count. Josh Hader picked up his MLB-leading 10th save of the year, despite walking two batters in the ninth. (He also struck out the side). Devin Williams and Brad Boxberger both pitched one-inning holds. Hader has now thrown back-to-back days and Boxberger only threw nine pitches on Wednesday, so he could be the save candidate in the series finale.
- Pittsburgh split up their starter duties with long reliever Bryse Wilson tossing four innings after opener Dillon Peters. Duties were then handed to setup man Wil Crowe in the seventh, but two runs (one earned) scored that inning on three hits. Crowe still has a sub-one ERA, so Wednesday’s performance was a small outlier. Closer David Bednar and sometimes-closer Chris Stratton haven’t pitched since Sunday.
- San Diego was able to preserve a late-inning lead on Wednesday despite a ninth-inning push by the Reds. Dinelson Lamet opened the frame with two walks and two hits, allowing two earned runs to score. It was then time for Taylor Rogers to save the day with a one-out, one-pitch save. It was his ninth of the year and he remains untouched in the run column through seven innings.
- The Reds kept their top relievers on the shelf on Wednesday — they were down by five or more runs all day until the bottom of the ninth. Phillip Diehl was a headliner and dominated in his first appearance of the year, tossing two scoreless innings and facing the minimum with two strikeouts. Cincinnati’s Lucas Sims, Art Warren, and Tony Santillan haven’t pitched since Sunday.
- Tampa Bay’s relievers were handed a shutout after six innings and it was saves and holds galore from that point forward, despite allowing two earned runs in three innings. Andrew Kittredge tossed a four-out save and allowed a solo home run, but otherwise settled in for save number three and a sub-two ERA on the year. J.P. Feyereisen is now the most-rested arm in the Rays’ bullpen, having not thrown since Saturday.
- Paul Sewald is now back with the Mariners after a stint on the COVID-IL, but his closer services were not needed on Wednesday in a 3-2 defeat. Justus Sheffield got some work done, however, tossing a perfect eighth and ninth. Drew Steckenrider regained some footing after a blown save on Sunday, posting a scoreless eighth with a strikeout. Seattle will have a well-rested Diego Castillo today, having not pitched since a back-to-back showing on Saturday and Sunday.
- Miami’s pitching staff was lights out on Wednesday, allowing a single unearned run over nine innings. The bullpen combined for three innings of two-hit baseball, anchored by Anthony Bender’s fourth save of the year. Bender closed out the eighth inning with two runners on base and has now earned saves in back-to-back days; his pitch count suggests he could be down until Saturday to make sure his hip soreness doesn’t flare up again.
- Washington found themselves on the losing end of Wednesday’s contest but their reliever effort was anything but. Five arms combined for 4 1/3 innings of one-hit action. It was also their bullpen A-listers getting the work since they hadn’t thrown in quite a while. Closer Tanner Rainey pitched a perfect eighth after not throwing since Saturday. Kyle Finnegan was on the same rest and worked a perfect ninth. Steve Cishek faced four batters in the sixth and hadn’t thrown since Sunday. Rainey threw 21 pitches so he could be used only in an emergency today.
- The Yankees saw great work out of Michael King on Wednesday, tossing 2 1/3 innings of one-hit work. A save situation was then handed to Clay Holmes and he delivered, striking out two in a perfect ninth. That was the extent of Yankees relievers in action; Aroldis Chapman had thrown 24 pitches on Tuesday and the bullpen was able to preserve his overuse.
- Baltimore saw a rocky outing from Félix Bautista, allowing two earned runs in 2/3 of an inning on three hits. His scoreless streak ended at five consecutive appearances. Setup man Dillon Tate was the most notable reliever to toss for the O’s, working a perfect eighth and lowering his season ERA to a 2.61 (10 1/3 IP).
- Boston had some early holds on Wednesday, courtesy of Jake Diekman’s 2/3 of an inning and Hirokazu Sawamura’s 1/3. Boston then pulled away for the final two innings, and the Red Sox were able to rest up their top bullpen arms after rolling out the red carpet on Tuesday.
- The best part of Toronto’s relief action on Wednesday was the fact that Yordan Romano and Yimi García earned some much-needed rest. Both had made three appearances over the previous five days. For Wednesday, the Blue Jays allowed six earned runs over four innings. Trevor Richards had a decent result (2/3 IP, 0 H, 0 R), but his two walks threatened his now 1.08 ERA on the year.
- Early holds were in the cards for the Phillies on Wednesday night, as José Alvarado and Seranthony Domínguez danced around some basepath traffic by the Rockies. Setup man Brad Hand was called upon to clean up the eighth with the bases loaded and he ended the threat with one out on four pitches, remaining scoreless through seven appearances this year. Closer Corey Knebel pitched in a non-save ninth, having not thrown since Sunday. He allowed a base hit but otherwise shut the door.
- Colorado’s road slide continued with a tough showing by top relievers. Carlos Estévez allowed two hits in the sixth, allowing one run to score. Robert Stephenson allowed two runs in the seventh on three hits. The best part of the night for the Rockies could have been the return of closer Daniel Bard after eight days of no action; he worked a perfect ninth with two strikeouts, lowering his season ERA to a 2.57. He threw 15 pitches, so both he and setup man Alex Colomé could be available in a tight situation today.
- Minnesota shut out the Tigers on Wednesday and it was largely at the hand of Twins starter Joe Ryan. Minnesota pitched Joe Smith and Danny Coulombe for one inning apiece, capping off the shutout with a combined one hit. Closer Emilio Pagán was able to rest up after a 23-pitch blown save on Tuesday.
- Most of Detroit’s damage was allowed early; their bullpen combined for three innings of one-run action. It was low-leverage action, but it was arguably perfect for Andrew Chafin as he returned from injury. He allowed one run in the eighth, however, allowing two hits. Will Vest was a notable performer, pitching a scoreless sixth and lowering his season ERA to a 2.70 (6 2/3 IP).
- Extra innings were in order for the Cubs and Braves on Wednesday, with Chicago’s three-spot in the 10th lifting them over Atlanta. The Cubs burned through their bullpen in the process, rolling out Mychal Givens, David Robertson, and Rowan Wick for the eighth*, ninth and tenth. *Givens allowed two runs and three hits in 2/3 of an inning, forcing Robertson to pick up four outs. He did so in dominant fashion, collecting three strikeouts. Wick earned the save in the 10th with two strikeouts, and the Cubs’ bullpen will now limp into the series finale today.
- Atlanta’s bullpen played the same, so a lot of pressure will be placed on each starter eating a big chunk of innings today. Kenley Jansen worked a scoreless ninth on Wednesday, facing the minimum. Tyler Matzek allowed the damage in the 10th, letting up three runs (two earned) in 2/3 of an inning. William Woods made his MLB debut down 3-1 in the eighth but kept it close for an Atlanta comeback, posting a scoreless inning.
- Houston shut it down in Arlington with three holds, one save, and four innings of one-run baseball. It was some top relievers getting the call; Phil Maton and Héctor Neris each collected one-inning holds, while Ryne Stanek earned the save despite allowing one run on one hit. Rafael Montero could be the candidate for saves today if the situation presents itself.
- Texas operated some longer relievers on Wednesday after allowing four runs in the first five innings. Matt Moore went two innings with two strikeouts, lowering his season ERA to a 1.08 (8 1/3 IP). Garrett Richards matched the workload with two strikeouts of his own (2.25 ERA, 8 IP). Closer Joe Barlow and setup man Matt Bush last pitched on Monday and they should be well-rested today.
- The Angels were handily ahead of the Guardians after posting six runs in the first two innings. Cleveland battled back, however; the Angels gave the ball to Andrew Wantz for the eighth and he allowed two runs on three hits. Mike Mayers took the ninth and allowed one run on two hits. A four-run lead at that point was not enough to get a top reliever going, however; this was much needed after closer Raisel Iglesias had thrown on back-to-back days. He should be fresh for today, however; he’s only thrown 16 pitches this week (seven on Monday and nine on Tuesday).
- Cleveland tapped into their bullpen during the fourth inning and Sam Hentges danced around some trouble, preserving his now-1.17 ERA on the year despite two hits in 1 1/3 innings of work. Closer Emmanuel Clase hadn’t thrown since Saturday and was called upon for two outs; he recorded two strikeouts and might have gained some much-needed momentum.
- There was an absolute showdown of a nightcap going on between Bay Area teams on Wednesday night. Oakland prevailed in a 1-0 victory courtesy of four no-hit innings from their bullpen. Dany Jiménez tossed a perfect ninth for save number four, while four other relievers chipped in with saves. Oakland has the day off today and it could be desperately needed after a game like that one.
- San Francisco’s opener Sam Long allowed one run in the first inning, the only frame he pitched. 17 consecutive half-innings of shutout baseball ensued, so both sides were getting it done on the mound. The Giants emptied the A-list tank, working Jake McGee, Tyler Rogers, and Camilo Doval for one inning apiece. Rogers faced the minimum with two strikeouts, while Doval struck out two while walking one and allowing a hit. San Francisco also has the day off today, and they will take on the 6-14 Nationals at home this weekend.
Photos by Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Doug Carlin (@Bdougals on Twitter)