Sorry so tardy with the bullpen report, the author was considerably under the weather last evening.
Here a are just a few notes from Saturday’s action out of the bullpen:
Rafael Betancourt is making “slow and steady progress” while recovering from an appendectomy last month. Hes tossed a few light bullpen sessions last week, so a simulated game on Monday appears to be the next course of action the veteran’s quest to return to the ninth-inning this season. Prior to the emergency procedure to remove his appendix, Betancourt notched 15 saves in 16 opportunities with a 3.16 ERA (1.21 WHIP) and a 22.2% K%. In his stead, Rex Brothers is 9-of-10 in save chances, owns a 1.52 ERA and is fanning 25% of the batters he faces. The Rockies have not mapped out a plan for their 38-year-old reliever past Monday’s potential simulated game, therefore, Brothers should continue to earn save opportunities for at least another week while Betancourt concludes his rehabilitation.
Addison Reed struggled a bit at the end of July, which Robin Ventura attributes to the right-hander being rusty from a lack of appearances, but appears to be back in the saddle for the time being. Since the former Aztec blew a save in Cleveland on the last day of July, Reed is 2-for-2 save opportunities while allowing just one earned run while posting a 2:1 K/BB. He’s now successfully closed out 28 games in 33 chances while posting a 3.61 ERA (2.59 FIP) and whiffing more than 25% of opposing hitters. A quick look at the velocity and usage on Reed’s offerings indicates his fastball appears to be down a tick from last season, but he’s not relying on that pitch as much as he used to. Reed is using his slider just over a third of the time and is throwing it harder than he has in each of the past two seasons. Opponents are slugging .239 against Reed’s fourseamer as opposed to .414 versus his slider.
Joe Nathan picked up his 332nd career save and 34th of the twenty-thirteen campaign in a 5-4 victory over the Astros in Houston last night. Nathan issued a walk, but escaped the ninth-inning unscathed to earn the handshake. This was Nathan’s third consecutive save since blowing just his second save of the year against the Yankees on July 23rd. The veteran right-hander owns a 1.54 ERA (0.90 WHIP) to go along with his 34 saves on the season and should be considered a top five-ish closing option from here on out.
Quick Hitters: LaTroy Hawkins (3), Koji Uehara (12), Casey Janssen (21), Huston Street (22), Steve Cishek (24), Kevin Gregg (25), Sergio Romo (28) and Rafael Soriano (29) each picked up saves on Saturday night. Hawkins is still available in 83% of Y! leagues for those hunting for late-season saves. David Hernandez of the Diamondbacks was optioned to the Triple-A Reno Aces after last evening’s outing. He’s struggled mightily through the early summer, but will look to get his confidence back on the farm, as his stuff doesn’t appear to be the primary concern at the moment.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
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