• The Royals decided to let lefty reliever Jose Mijares go as the Giants picked him up on a waiver claim today. Jose Mijares is a solid matchup against left-handed hitters (.273 wOBA against lefties compared to .358 wOBA against righties) but he doesn’t figure to enter the closer discussion on San Francisco. However, the Mijares addition allows the Giants to use him as a lefty specialist and let Jeremy Affeldt be part of a closer-by-committee approach at least while Santiago Casilla heals from a recurring blister according to manager Bruce Bochy. Casilla, Sergio Romo and Jeremy Affeldt should all receive opportunities in the upcoming weeks, and all should be owned at least until the situation starts to sort itself out more clearly.
• Addison Reed recorded his 20th save tonight against the Royals and while he hasn’t particularly wowed anyone this year (4.10 xFIP/8.71 K/9), he’s been a solid closer for the White Sox and even with the addition of Brett Myers, Reed maintains a strong hold on the closer role in the South Side of Chicago.
• While there are some legitimate concerns about Ryan Cook, as of now he is still the closer for the A’s. Cook has blown his last two saves, and his work may have to be monitored a little more closely, but he will retain ninth inning duties for the time being. A’s manager Bob Melvin might have given him a vote of confidence but it would still be worthwhile to pick up Grant Balfour if your team is in need of saves. Balfour may have a similar less-than-impressive xFIP (4.23) as Ryan Cook (4.32), but he also has the hotter hand while Cook has been struggling. We’ll make sure to keep a close eye on this situation, as each save situation in Oakland could have some implications.
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: Craig Kimbrel (ATL) @ PHI
It’s never a bad decision to choose Craig Kimbrel and with three days of rest playing against the Phillies, Kimbrel stands as a good bet to receive a save opportunity and a chance to rack up a few strikeouts, something he does better than anyone in the league that never called Cuba home. Aroldis Chapman is certainly having a relief season for the ages but Kimbrel’s numbers are just as jaw-dropping: 15.64 K/9 and a 1.13 xFIP, even lower than Chapman’s!
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]