Apologies for a shorter Bullpen Report tonight but wishing all of you a wonderful holiday!
• Heath Bell entered the 10th inning today for a save against the Brewers but wasn’t able to close the door, giving up a walk off home run to Aramis Ramirez. As Colin mentioned a few days ago, Heath Bell has been pitching well of late while the Marlins setup men have been struggling, so consider this just a blip on the radar with Bell maintaining a firm grasp on closing duties in Miami.
• The Brewers bullpen meanwhile had a bit of a meltdown today, giving up nine runs in total. Jon Axford was able to pitch a scoreless inning but his setup man, Francisco Rodriguez, struggled blowing the save for the Brewers. The Mets have reportedly been interested in K-Rod, but the days of Rodriguez being a top notch reliever appear to be over. K-Rod hasn’t been particularly awful this season (3.92 xFIP) but he clearly isn’t the same pitcher he used to be, losing a lot of his swing and miss stuff with a 8.7% SwStr%, down from his career 12.7%. K-Rod’s name may float around in some trade rumors, but it’s unlikely that he’ll be the best reliever in any bullpen he goes to and should only be relied on getting holds in 2012, not necessarily saves.
• Drew Storen is set to begin rehab on Thursday and is scheduled to be back on the Nationals for the start of the second half of the season. Nationals manager Davey Johnson has indicated that Storen will start the year as a setup man and Clippard has certainly pitched well enough to deserve to hold onto the job. So long as Clippard keeps pitching the way he has been, it will be hard to remove him from the role, although with Storen waiting in the wings he may not have the longest leash.
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: David Robertson (NYY) at TB
The Rays have the big edge on the better starting David tomorrow with David Price facing David Phelps, but Yankees reliever David Robertson is fully rested and has a chance to show off his elite strikeout stuff (14.77 K/9) against the Rays.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
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