• All aboard the Edward Mujica bandwagon! Mujica got another crack at the ninth inning tonight, trying to hold on to Shelby Miller‘s third win of the season. Thankfully (for St. Louis fans), he made it look easy, pitching a 1-2-3 ninth to secure the 3-2 win. He doesn’t possess elite strikeout stuff, mainly relying on a fairly straight fastball and an above-average splitter as his two primary weapons. He offsets this lack of prototypical late inning heat with fantastic control, putting up a career 4.1% BB%. Yes, it’s sexy time. He doesn’t have the raw upside of a guy like Trevor Rosenthal, but he’s good enough (and the Cardinals pen has been shaky enough) that he can hold the job. He’s a must own in all formats. Hopefully you snagged him a few days ago but double check your wire if you haven’t.
Speaking of Rosenthal, he pitched a scoreless eighth inning; striking out two, but also allowing two baserunners. Rosenthal has been hurt by a high BABIP (.424) and said hits have come at inopportune times. His 2.19 xFIP (after tonight) shows he still has top-3 closer upside if he could only whittle his way into the ninth inning. He should still be owned in 12-team or deeper mixed leagues as a rates/upside play, even with the latest bullpen shakeup. It’s honestly a bit of a bummer that Mujica got the first post-Boggs shot at the ninth because he’s good enough to keep the job (and make Rosenthal St. Louis’ Kenley Jansen), but the Cardinals’ young phenom is just too filthy to leave rotting on the wire.
• Sometimes, I feel like all I talk about is the Red Sox bullpen. Andrew Bailey worked his third day in a row on Monday, finishing off a three-run win in a game that– let’s be honest– really shouldn’t have been that close. While John Farrell was looking to get Bailey a day off, the back end of his bullpen (Clayton Mortensen and Alex Wilson) couldn’t keep a blowout from becoming a save situation. With Bailey pitching three games in a row, he’s almost certainly unavailable on Tuesday. I suspect the Red Sox would be hesitant to use Koji Uehara as a full-time closer given his injury history/age, but that doesn’t preclude him from picking up a stray save tomorrow should the situation arise. Pick him up in all leagues with daily moves as a one-day save flier.
• Chris Perez had a less eventful ninth inning tonight against the White Sox. Like I said last night, don’t get too cute and go after setup guys in their pen under the guise that his job is in danger. Congrats to Rafael Soriano on the birth of his son. Drew Storen was in line for a vulture save if one arose tonight, but alas, it wasn’t to be. Soriano should be back with the team tomorrow.
• On the road, the Cubs have already used James Russell, Shawn Camp, Carlos Marmol, and “proven closer™” Kevin Gregg as they play (at press time!) in extra innings. Anyone who tells you they have a clue as to who will get the next save for this team is lying.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
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