Hard to believe we’re already into August…
• Well now look who is getting saves in Seattle. A few nights after Tom Wilhelmsen imploded in a non-save situation against the Boston Red Sox, Danny Farquhar earned save number two as (apparently) the Mariners’ new closer du jour. Farquhar has actually been quite impressive this year once you look past the abysmal 5.09 ERA; a “unlucky” .359 BABIP and 53% LOB% are what is keeping that number so far away from his sparkling 2.13 xFIP.
Dave Cameron put together a great piece on Farquhar just a few days ago (eerie premonition?), so I urge you to go check it out. Interestingly, while we don’t have a ton of data points on the diminutive (sub 6-foot, at least) righty, his velocity is up almost four mph from his first go-around in the big leagues two years ago (although some of that may be classification issues as BIS now breaks his repertoire into fastball, cutter, curveball as opposed to fastball, slider). Needless to say, Farquhar needs to be owned in all leagues; he almost certainly isn’t going to continue putting up a 2.13 xFIP, but if he keeps pitching like he has been, he could conceivably hold onto the ninth inning for the remainder of 2013.
• The Blue Jays gain a reliever, the Blue Jays lose a reliever. A few days after getting Sergio Santos back on the active roster, news hit that feel-good-story Steve Delabar was hitting the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. His velocity had been trending down over his last few outings, so it’s unlikely this was an acute issue. The all-star righty had been enjoying a brilliant 2013, posting a 3.11 xFIP with a 35% K%. Any arm injury is a concern with him, but at least it isn’t his elbow. While I’d try and hold him in holds leagues if you have the room, shoulder injuries are tricky, so he’s droppable in redraft leagues if you need stats now.
Santos rejoined the team Thursday and quickly was thrust into action, tossing two innings while allowing a run (no strikeouts, no walks). Of note, his velocity was pretty off (93 mph on the fastball after working 95-97 the last three years). Even though he supposedly has a clean bill of health, he bears watching going forward. He’s also solidly behind Casey Janssen for the ninth, so we’re a ways away from a controversy north of the border. Plenty of other handcuffs I’d rather have than him.
• It may be a bit of a surprise to see Drew Smyly took a blown save in Detroit this afternoon. Jim Leyland gave usual closer Joaquin Benoit the day off after he appeared in back-to-back games. Biggest point of interest here for fantasy owners may be that Jose Veras isn’t the slam dunk number two behind Benoit. This was also just a hiccup for Smyly; he actually posted his best month (peripherally) in July (1.98 xFIP, 32% K%, no walks).
• Bobby Parnell remains unavailable with what essentially appears to be a stiff neck. The team clearly doesn’t believe this to be a disabled list type of injury, but David Aardsma (who blew a save Friday covering for Parnell) or LaTroy Hawkins may get a shot at a save or two early in the week if the Mets’ closer’s injury doesn’t subside.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]