The final week is upon us. Be sure to get your saves – you never know which category is going to be the one you win (or lose) by one to decide a matchup. Save situations are a bit of a mess at this point, but they really have been all year. Find out who could get you a save or a win out of the pen for today and check back tomorrow to begin padding those stats in a new week.
- With Monday comes days off for a handful of bullpens. The following teams will get a rest to start the final week of the season: Red Sox, Orioles, Tigers, Twins, Athletics, Dodgers, Padres, Diamondbacks
- The Rays have scheduled Pete Fairbanks to start Monday’s game against the Mets, his second start of the season. Josh Fleming is expected to take the ball for the bulk of the game in relief of Fairbanks. The Mets have a tendency to comically fail to produce run support for their scheduled starter Jacob deGrom, so there’s a chance Fleming could sneak a win out of this one.
- Down by two runs, the Mariners brought Yohan Ramírez in the eighth inning. He held the score issuing just one walk. After Seattle hitters tied the score in the bottom half of the inning, Kendall Graveman kept the score tied pitching a clean ninth inning. Yoshihisa Hirano was saved for the 10th and allowed the inherited runner to score, but was saved as the Mariners scored one more in the bottom half of the 10th. Trevor Rosenthal blew the save but picked up the win while pitching through both the 10th and 11th innings for the Padres, and Casey Sadler gave up three runs in the 11th inning. The Padres are off Monday so their bullpen gets a rest, but Seattle has used Hirano and Graveman in two straight. Ramírez may see time in the final inning on Monday.
- Andrew Miller pitched a perfect ninth for the Cardinals to preserve their one-run lead over the Pirates and picked up his third save in the process. Miller has pitched in three of the last four days, though his pitch count on any one day never broke 18. He should be available, along with the rest of St. Louis’ bullpen, against Kansas City on Monday.
- Richard Rodríguez was used by the Pirates for the second straight day, throwing 23 pitches on Sunday and 10 on Saturday. I’d still expect Rodriguez to be used in a save situation on Monday, but if he is he should be shelves on Tuesday.
- Mychal Givens picked up his first save of the season after being asked to get the final out of the ninth against the Dodgers, after Daniel Bard imploded a bit and gave up two runs, bringing the score within three. Givens threw just one pitch to induce a Chris Taylor ground ball to end the game. Bard needed 35 pitches to get through his night, and may be given a day off Monday. Givens may get the ball in the ninth once again if needed.
- Brandon Workman was the first reliever out of the bullpen, pitching a clean fifth inning for the Phillies on Sunday. It’s safe to move him out of the closer role at this time.
- Anthony Bass recorded his sixth save of the year pitching 1.1 perfect innings to close out their game on Sunday. Rafael Dolis was still unavailable with a knee injury, but could be back Monday. Bass would still be available if Dolis needs another day to recover.
- Presumably, Josh Hader wasn’t going to be used in the Brewers’ Sunday outing, but was forced to come in and clean up the mess left by Brent Suter, as he gave up two runs in the ninth after pitching a clean eighth. Luckily for his fantasy rosters, Hader came in and threw two pitches to record his 10th save of the year.
- Ryan Pressly picked up his second save in as many days, his 12th on the year. He’s only needed 25 pitches between the two outings and very well could still be used on Monday if needed in Seattle.
- Brandon Kintzler recorded his 10th save of the season, pitching a scoreless seventh inning of the Marlins’ first game of their Sunday doubleheader. That’s two days in a row for Kintzler, who needed 22 pitches to get through this outing, and 18 pitches on Saturday. Brad Boxberger or Yimi García could see late-inning action on Monday.
- Raisel Iglesias and Mark Melancon each pitched the final inning of their team’s respective games in non-save situations. Both Iglesias and Melancon hadn’t pitched in at least four days so this seemed like a good opportunity to get them some work. Both should be available on Monday.
- Brad Hand came in to close out Cleveland four-run lead over Detroit on Sunday, and though the Indians came away with the victory, Hand gave up two hits and a run through 26 pitches. This looks like just a blip in the radar, but after throwing 20 pitches on Friday, Hand may get a day off Tuesday if used again on Monday.
- The Orioles had Hunter Harvey set up for César Valdez on Sunday. Valdez pitched a perfect ninth inning to bring home his second save on the year. while Harvey recorded the previous four outs, two by way of strikeout. Valdez has a good a shot as anyone to get the next save opportunity in Baltimore if there happens to be one in the final week of the season.
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