Welcome back to the latest 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
- CLE and CWS both got rest on Sunday as their game was rained out.
- The following teams will get a rest on Monday: BAL, BOS, TOR, CLE, DET, HOU, SEA, WSN, ARI, COL, SDP, and SFG.
- Seranthony Domínguez was placed on the IL by the Phillies. This leaves David Robertson as the top option for saves.
- Look out for news of Ryan Helsley being activated for the Cardinals. This should happen on Monday.
- Brusdar Graterol is expected to be activated for Monday’s game against Milwaukee. He immediately takes a key role in the Dodgers’ bullpen.
CIN 9 – PIT 5
- Alexis Díaz worked the 9th in a non-save situation for the Reds and delivered a scoreless frame. He’s been solid all year, but he’s been particularly dominant in August with 8.2 IPs, 16 Ks, and just 1 BB. The main things holding him back are the Reds’ refusal to consistently use him in the 9th inning and the Reds’ refusal to consistently win.
- Colin Holderman got roughed up and allowed the lead to balloon to four in his first multi-run outing as a Pirate. The man they got for Daniel Vogelbach was solid with the Mets and he had continued to be solid with the Pirates until this brief blip. He and David Bednar could make up a formidable 1-2 punch at the back of the Pittsburgh bullpen next year.
NYM 10 – PHI 9
- With Taijuan Walker scratched from this start, the Mets probably knew they were going to have to reach deep into their bullpen to get the job done. Momentarily stepping away from his job as a funeral director, Nate Fisher delivered three scoreless innings to turn it over to Trevor May and Edwin Díaz. They each got touched up for a run, but May walked away with a win and Diaz the save. This was also Diaz’s first run allowed since June 18th, a streak of 21 innings.
- There were two separate blown saves handed out in this one; one to Connor Brogdon for his 7th inning meltdown and another to David Robertson for his 9th inning issues. Both doled out personally by Mark Canha. With Seranthony Domínguez now on the IL, Robertson is likely to be the guy the Phillies continue to turn to despite this rocky outing.
HOU 5 – ATL 4
- Rafael Montero worked a clean 8th for his eighteenth hold of the season and passed it off to Ryan Pressly for his 25th save. It was a dirty save for Pressly as he allowed two runs on two hits before closing the door. Getting the final three outs against Atlanta has been tough sleddinig for lots of pitchers lately, so we should issue a pass to the Astros closer.
- A second straight rough outing for Dylan Lee as he allowed the go-ahead runs late in the game for the second straight day. The offense bailed him out yesterday, but fell just short today leaving Lee saddled with his first loss of the year. It was mainly heavy usage from the rest of the pen that forced him into these high leverage situations, so he’ll continue to remain a few rungs down in the pecking order for holds.
TOR 2 – NYY 4
- After picking up the win on Saturday, Adam Cimber allowed two runs in the 7th and earned the loss on Sunday. He remains in the mix for holds consistently, but will probably get some rest after working both games of the weekend.
- With Scott Effross unavailable due to injury, the Yankees turned to Lou Trivino to record the final seven outs and close out the game on Sunday. By all accounts, Aroldis Chapman was available, but his performance on Friday seemed to rattle the club’s confidence in him. Given how strong Trivino looked, it appears they thought he was the best option to close out this one. He didn’t earn a save as he came in with a tie score, but he essentially acted both as setup and closer in this one. If Effross misses more time, it appears that Trivino will be in the mix for saves in addition to Chapman and the former could end up taking the job outright given the latter’s struggles this year.
LAA 0 – DET 4
- Jimmy Herget worked the fifth and sixth innings in this one allowing a run on two hits. He’s been lights out since Raisel Iglesias was traded away as that was his first run allowed in August in 12.1 IPs. Still, it appears that he’s only an occasional choice for saves behind José Quijada and Ryan Tepera who have both been used in more high leverage situations recently.
- Andrew Chafin and Gregory Soto combined to secure the final six outs of this game although no saves or holds were awarded due to the four run cushion the Tigers enjoyed. Soto seems to be beginning to recover after his five-run implosion earlier this month and he should be a decent mid-range closer the rest of the way as long as you can handle his higher than average WHIP.
KCR 2- TBR 3
- Brad Keller had his first successful bullpen outing after his first one did not go according to plan. Sometimes starters are able to kick it up a notch when they’re moved to the bullpen a la Andrew Miller way back when along with many others, but Keller’s stuff does not warrant that kind of comp and he’s most likely to find a home as an emergency innings eater.
- It was a close game throughout and the Rays used four relievers all of whom were rewarded with either a win, hold, or save. Shawn Armstrong earned the win, Colin Poche and Brooks Raley secured holds, and Pete Fairbanks notched his fourth save of the year. Tune in next week to see in what order these names come up when the Rays turn the saves slot machine wheel.
TEX 7 – MIN 0
- Taylor Hearn logged a save of the three-inning variety by retiring all nine batters he faced, five on strikes. It’s rare to see Hearn this dominant and doubly rare to see the Rangers with an opportunity for a three-inning save on the road against the Twins. This isn’t worth chasing.
- Emilio Pagán has been demoted to low-leverage roles and he’s still struggling. Three runs in two innings of work in this one as his ERA balloons to 5.24. It’s already his fourth outing in August where he’s allowed multiple runs.
MIL 5 – CHC 2
- Taylor Rogers picked up his 29th save of the year and first since July 23rd when he was still a Padre. Brad Boxberger earned his 23rd hold of the year. I wouldn’t go scoop up Rogers yet as Devin Williams had thrown 37 pitches on Saturday and was surely unavailable. The back of their bullpen is pretty gassed going into their three-game series in Los Angeles.
- The Cubs were up 2-0 going into the 7th inning, but the bullpen allowed five runs over the final three frames to drop the game. It was a team effort as all four relievers who appeared allowed at least a run. Brandon Hughes took the blown save and Rowan Wick the loss. It was a wild week for the Cubs as the team combined for six blown saves over their last six games, but they had won five in a row until dropping this one.
SFG 9 – COL 8
- It was little league rules in this one as pretty much everyone on the Giants’ roster got to play. Seven relievers came to the mound and combined to allow four runs in 4.1 IPs. Notables include Camilo Doval working a scoreless ninth to send it to extras, Dominic Leone earning his fourth win, and Zack Littell swiping his first save of the season.
- Only six relievers left the bullpen for Colorado and they combined for three runs (one earned) in 4.2 IPs. Jake Bird ended up taking a tough-luck loss after allowing only the extra-innings bonus runner to score.
SEA 3 – OAK 5
- Another scoreless inning for Erik Swanson as he lowered his ERA to 0.92. He hasn’t allowed a run since July 26th, a stretch of 10.1 IPs.
- It was Christmas for Oakland relievers on Sunday and everyone got a hold in their stocking. In all, five holds were graciously handed out and the save at the end went to Austin Pruitt for his first of the year. The A’s bullpen doesn’t have much in the way of defined roles right now and they don’t have much incentive to change that. This isn’t a closer committee that will necessarily hurt you, but they also won’t provide much in the way of saves chances. This bullpen is completely gassed after two days of heavy usage and they’ll either need to pray for some length from Adam Oller on Monday or hope someone unexpected steps up to give them multiple innings out of the pen.
WSN 1 – SDP 2
- For a relief corps that started out the year historically badly, a 4.06 ERA in the month of August is a pretty big improvement. Erasmo Ramírez has been an unexpected part of that as he sports a 1.38 ERA in thirteen August innings.
- The Padres avoided throwing Luis Garcia in three straight games and instead turned to Nick Martinez to lock down his fifth save of the season. These two seem to be the top options for saves until the club deems Hader ready to return to the ninth with Garcia likely holding a slight edge over Martinez.
STL 6 – ARI 4
- With Ryan Helsley still on the Paternity List, Giovanny Gallegos stepped in for his twelfth save of the year by recording a clean ninth inning. Gallegos struggled in April, but has been pretty much what we expected since. Since May 1st, he has a 2.52 ERA and 34% K-rate in 39.1 IPs. Helsley is expected to return for the five-game series in Chicago which will push Gallegos back to the 1b slot in the committee.
- The Diamondbacks pen was unable to hold the lead on Sunday as they turned a 4-3 lead going into the 7th into a 6-4 loss. Joe Mantiply was saddled with the loss, his fourth, and Kevin Ginkel took a tough luck blown save as he attempted to clean up Mantiply’s mess. This is not a bullpen you want to be heavily invested in.
MIA 3 – LAD 10
- Miami relievers have typically been able to rely on a light workload behind Sandy Alcantara this year, but Dodger Stadium yet again proved to be his bugaboo. They were forced to record thirteen outs and fared only marginally better than their Cy Young candidate counterpart.
- Craig Kimbrel was given a seven-run lead to play with in the ninth and found this situation much more comfortable as he retired the side in order. How much longer until we see Evan Phillips anointed? Is Kimbrel really the guy the Dodgers want closing out games in the playoffs?
BOS 3 – BAL 5
- John Schreiber entered in the 8th inning in a tie game with a man on first and one out. He left, just three batters later, with the Red Sox down 5-2. While Matt Barnes was given the loss, this game was on Schreiber who has now allowed five runs (four earned) over his past four outings. Whitlock continues to be the most reliable reliever in Boston, but his usage as a multi-inning reliever means that someone else will need to step up when he’s unavailable. So far in August, that has not been John Schreiber.
- Cionel Pérez lucked into his seventh win of the season and Félix Bautista picked up his eighth save despite allowing a home run to lead off the 9th. Bautista has not backed down since being promoted to the 9th inning and he’s five-for-five in save opportunities in August. He should remain the top dog in a surprisingly good Orioles’ bullpen.
Bullpen Depth Charts
Also, if you’re looking for a detailed list or ranking of RPs, check out Rick Graham’s weekly pieces:
The Hold Up: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday
Closing Time: Ranking the Top 30 Closers
Top 100 Relievers for Save+Hold Leagues
Photos by Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Doug Carlin (@Bdougals on Twitter)