• Rafael Soriano pitched a scoreless inning in last night’s game against the Red Sox for his 31st save of the year. Soriano’s xFIP is a solid but unspectacular 3.63 due to his minuscule HR/FB ratio (2.0%), but his 2.36 FIP illustrates that he’s still been having a solid season thus far and should continue to rack up saves pitching for the Yankees even though his ERA will creep up from its current 1.64.
In other Yankee news, Bryan Hoch reports that Pedro Feliciano will return to the Yankees in September. Feliciano hasn’t thrown a pitch since 2010 after leading the league in appearances for three years in a row on the Mets but figures to be another lefty option for the Yankees when the rosters expand in September. Unless you’re in the deepest of fantasy baseball leagues Feliciano shouldn’t be on your radar, but his return to the Yankees might let Girardi use lefties Boone Logan and Clay Rapada in higher leveraged innings.
• Drew Storen pitched in the eighth inning tonight against the Braves in a tie game and with Tyler Clippard getting his 27th save of the year last night it looks as though Clippard will be the closer for the rest of the season for the Nationals. Like Rafael Soriano, Clippard is a fly ball pitcher who has managed to avoid giving up the home run this year en route to a less than stellar 4.13 xFIP but with Storen struggling, pitching to a 5.54 xFIP, Clippard has a solid hold on the closer role in Washington.
• Rafael Betancourt allowed two runners to reach base tonight but was able to pitch a scoreless ninth inning for his 24th save of the year. Betancourt was involved in many rumors at the trading deadline this year but without any rumblings from Colorado recently, Betancourt should remain on the Rockies, pitching in the ninth inning.
• For those who thought they saw the last of Roger Clemens, you now have another chance to see him pitch as he recently signed with the Sugar Land Skeeters of the Atlantic League. Clemens was clocked throwing as high as 87 mph and although it remains to be seen what Clemens is looking to achieve pitching in the independent ball, the Astros reportedly had a scout at the game. It’s doubtful that Clemens is given a shot to pitch in the MLB this year and it’s extremely doubtful that he receives any save opportunities, but it is surely an interesting story to watch and likely more interesting than the Astros season.
For those of you who play daily fantasy games like FanGraphs: The Game, or just like to stream players, here is a matchup you may be able to exploit.
A Pitcher for Tomorrow: Jason Motte (STL) vs. HOU
Adam Wainwright takes the bump tomorrow against the aforementioned Astros looking like the Wainwright of old with a 2.04 ERA in his last five starts. St. Louis is in the middle of the wild card race in the NL and Jason Motte figures to have a solid chance to receive a save opportunity tomorrow night.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
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