Bullpen Report: June 10, 2013

A few teams are off tonight but you still get 100% of the Bullpen Report (I think)…

Greg Holland picked up the clean save tonight, striking out two for his 13th save of the year. Since his struggles earlier on in the season Holland has been great and in his last eleven appearances, Holland has thrown 11.0 scoreless frames with 16 strikeouts against only three walks. On the year Holland now has a 1.96 ERA supported by a fantastic 1.33 FIP and 2.13 xFIP. Holland’s control (3.91 BB/9) isn’t perfect, but he makes up for it with a fantastic 13.70 K/9, backed by an equally fantastic ability to miss bats (14.3% SwStr%). Holland hasn’t received as many save opportunities as some other relievers (I’m looking at you Mr. Jason Grilli) but not many pitchers have Holland’s ability to get K’s and he should be one of the better options out of the pen, whether it’s real life or fantasy this season.

Joe Nathan recorded his 20th save of the season, pitching a perfect ninth against the Indians, and is now 20/21 on save opportunities on the year. Nathan’s velocity is down to 91.8 mph from 94 mph last season and his strikeout rate has gone down with it, falling from 10.91 K/9 in 2012 to 8.89 thus far in 2013. However, while Nathan is likely not as splashy as his 1.78 ERA would suggest, his peripherals are still plenty good, leading to a 3.19 FIP. Also, when you add in the fact that Nathan pitches for one of the better teams in baseball, Nathan should continue to receive plenty of save opps, strike out his fair share of batters and remain one of the top closers in fantasy baseball.

Fernando Rodney pitched one and two-thirds innings tonight, throwing 33 pitches against the Red Sox. Rodney wasn’t terribly effective either, letting three men reach base and allowing two runs to score.  Rodney’s ERA now stands at 4.94 and although he’ll remain closer for the Rays, teams looking for a sneaky save opp should look Joel Peralta‘s way, if Joe Maddon decides to rest Rodney after his 33 pitch workload this evening. Rodney’s walk-rate gets mentioned a lot around these parts but it certainly is worthy of repeated views. After walking two batters tonight, Rodney’s walk-rate stands at a ridiculous 7.24 BB/9 which isn’t sustainable if you want to remain closer all year, unless your name is Mitch Williams or Carlos Marmol and even they didn’t last too long closing games with a BB/9 over seven.

Rodney is missing bats and striking out batters at a higher frequency than he has previously leading to a 3.84 xFIP which certainly could be worse, but so long as he’s walking batters left and right, Joel Peralta must at least be monitored, if not owned.

Closer Grid:


Closer First Second DL/Minors
Arizona Heath Bell David Hernandez Matt Reynolds J.J. Putz
Atlanta Craig Kimbrel Jordan Walden Cory Gearrin
Baltimore Jim Johnson Darren O’Day Tommy Hunter
Boston Andrew Bailey Junichi Tazawa Koji Uehara
CHI (NL) Kevin Gregg Carlos Marmol James Russell
CHI (AL) Addison Reed Jesse Crain Matt Thornton
Cincy Aroldis Chapman Jonathan Broxton J.J. Hoover Sean Marshall
Cleveland Vinnie Pestano Joe Smith Bryan Shaw Chris Perez
Colorado Rex Brothers Wilton Lopez Matt Belisle Rafael Betancourt
Detroit Jose Valverde Joaquin Benoit Phil Coke
Houston Jose Veras Hector Ambriz Wesley Wright
KC Greg Holland Aaron Crow Kelvin Herrera
LAA Ernesto Frieri Scott Downs Robert Coello Ryan Madson
LAD Brandon League Kenley Jansen Ronald Belisario
Miami Steve Cishek Mike Dunn Chad Qualls
Milwaukee Francisco Rodriguez Jim Henderson John Axford
Minnesota Glen Perkins Jared Burton Casey Fien
NY (NL) Bobby Parnell Brandon Lyon LaTroy Hawkins Frank Francisco
NY (AL) Mariano Rivera David Robertson Joba Chamberlain
Oakland Grant Balfour Ryan Cook Sean Doolittle
Philly Jonathan Papelbon Mike Adams Antonio Bastardo
Pittsburgh Jason Grilli Mark Melancon Tony Watson
St. Louis Edward Mujica Trevor Rosenthal Fernando Salas Jason Motte
SD Luke Gregerson Dale Thayer Joe Thatcher Huston Street
SF Sergio Romo Jeremy Affeldt Jean Machi Santiago Casilla
Seattle Tom Wilhelmsen Carter Capps Charlie Furbush
TB Fernando Rodney Joel Peralta Jake McGee
Texas Joe Nathan Tanner Scheppers Jason Frasor
Toronto Casey Janssen Steve Delabar Brett Cecil Sergio Santos
Wash. Rafael Soriano Drew Storen Tyler Clippard

[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]

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When he's not focusing on every team's bullpen situation, Ben can be found blogging at Ben's Baseball Bias and on Twitter @BensBias

21 Responses to “Bullpen Report: June 10, 2013”

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  1. Hendu for Kutch says:

    Any idea what’s up with Sean Doolittle? He’d been nigh on untouchable this season until simply bursting into flames over his last 5 appearances. Possible injury? His rates had been so good, I’m hesitant to cut him loose, but with Herrera back up and looking good again (and available as a free agent), I’m tempted.

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    • He’s a converted outfielder who uses essentially one pitch. While I think that a lot of his struggles can be considered a victim of regression I’m not sure it explains it all.

      His velocity charts wouldn’t really hint towards an injury as it has increased: http://www.fangraphs.com/pitchfxo.aspx?playerid=1581&position=P&pitch=FA

      The one thing his struggle mean is that Ryan Cook is cemented as the replacement closer if anything were to happen to Balfour, so in that regard Doolittle is easily replaceable as there are both other pitchers who are closer to saves on the wire as well as pitchers who can help your ratios that aren’t struggling like Doolittle is at the moment.

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      • HenduforKutch says:

        It’s a Holds+Saves league, so he’d been very valuable up until this recent stretch. I agree that if he was simply a ratio chaser, I’d have cut him loose.

        I’m a little gunshy because I stuck with Jake McGee for a while as well while he was doing poorly before finally cutting the cord. Of course, he immediately reverted to 2012 form.

        In terms of holds, K’s, and rate stats would you go with Doolittle or Herrera?

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      • Both have their flaws but I might prefer Herrera. He’s been great since returning from the minors and seems to have his HR problem solved, which might have just been a bout of bad luck anywho.

        I’d understand being gun shy and couldn’t blame you for holding Doolittle either, as he might receive more hold opportunities on Oakland.

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  2. Wes says:

    This just in, Brandon League is the worst.

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    • Wes says:

      Can we put a line through League’s name or not capitalize it or something? I feel like he should be made lower than he already is.

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    • I’m not sure what your referring to exactly when you say the worst, but if you mean he’s the worst current closer in baseball then I don’t know that I can disagree.

      After tonight’s outing, the Dodgers might not have any choice but to remove League from the role.

      I will be sure to touch up on this tonight.

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      • CPT Sean says:

        Mattingly said he would have used Jansen against the heart of the Diamondbacks order if they were up in the ninth, but has he done this at all this year? Mattingly talks a big game, but I still think Ned is pulling the strings.

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  3. deezy333 says:

    Thoughts on Gregerson? Was he just getting the night off or will the Friars stick with Thayer until Street is back?

    Also, someone just dropped Chris Perez in my league and Im curious as to whether I should pick him up. I’ve heard he is throwing off a mound so he could be back soon, but Im also obviously concerned about his legal situation.


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    • mikeincmn says:

      I dont think the legal situation will matter. The league never does anything about guys who get busted for DUI’s which I consider a worse offense than buying some pot.

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      • Fedee_ says:

        I agree Mike but Chris Perez is a first class dumbass. Haha the dude ordered like half a pound over the mail. For that I hope he gets suspended.

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    • Gregerson was just getting the night off. Thayer isn’t a bad speculative add but it’s still Gregerson at the moment.

      I’d be more concerned about Chris Perez’ shoulder than his legal situation. Theoretically I suppose Perez could be suspended if something were to come of this, but I don’t think it would be extravagant and either way, Perez will regain the role once he’s healthy or just plain able to pitch.

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  4. Kevin says:

    Closers are driving me to the mad house this year. Tazawa gets the gig and gets exactly zero save chances in two weeks. Pestano has had the gig for the same amount of time. Zero save chances.

    Oh I also have Gregg who just went nearly a month without a save chance.

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  5. Atreyu Jones says:

    In a trade, if I have the choice of receiving either Ernesto Frieri or Toronto’s Janssen, whom should I request?

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    • SKob says:

      I think a glance at the chart should answer that question.

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      • Atreyu Jones says:

        I was asking the commenting public, not necessarily the creator of the grid.

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      • Atreyu Jones says:

        Also, the grid is not a ranking in anything besides the alphabet, so just because it says Janssen’s job security is higher doesn’t mean the grid is saying Janssen is more desirable as a fantasy closer in general. For example, most people would say Frieri is more valuable than Jose Veras.

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    • In the chart we have Frieri as yellow, but that will probably change for tonight.

      Either way, I’d prefer Janssen to Frieri. Frieri doesn’t necessarily have someone breathing down his back but his 6.23 BB/9 makes him more vulnerable to a change than Janssen. Sergio Santos will probably come back at some point but in terms of relievers returning to their teams to steal saves, I would put Ryan Madson ahead of Santos on that list.

      It feels weird thinking of Janssen as a dominant reliever but in the last three seasons he has a 2.46 ERA over 139 IP with a 5.15 K/BB.

      If strikeouts are of the utmost importance, I’d consider Frieri but Janssen’s the better pitcher all around.

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  6. RWG says:

    Does Putz get the job back? looks like he gonna be ready for a Rehab Assignment and be back soon (assuming no setbacks of course)

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