• Koji Uehara had a day off after throwing on three consecutive days and Edward Mujica came on for his second save of the year. Mujica has had a largely forgettable year and after tonight’s perfect inning his ERA dropped all the way to 6.04. Although I’d still say Junichi Tazawa or Andrew Miller could see saves if Uehara were to suddenly get hurt, it’s worth noting that Mujica could be in the mix. Also worth noting, even on his off day, is Uehara’s outstanding season with a 33% K-BB% and only two earned runs in 31.2 innings pitched. Uehara has somehow managed to maybe be even better than his phenomenal 2013. Unreal.
• Some of the comments in previous reports called me and others out on continually sounding the Papelbon alarm while he continues to get saves and maybe they’re right as Jonathan Papelbon nailed his 16th save of the season, lowering his ERA to 1.59. Of course this is after blowing his last save chance and I can still point to his just OK peripherals and expect regression but he’s also a seemingly unmovable contract that will continue to get saves this year and next, even if his ERA starts to rise on an aging team.
• Steve Cishek gave up an earned run but also struck out two for his 16th save of the year. Cishek was a little vulnerable to left handed hitters last season but in 12.1 innings this year he’s held them to an impressive .195 wOBA. With a 2.05/1.78/2.25 ERA/FIP/xFIP line. On a better than expected Marlins team, Cishek profiles as a sneaky good closer this year. If you’re looking to acquire saves, instead of paying ace closer prices, you might be able to get similar production at a fraction of the cost with Cishek, especially if his success against lefties is more than just an exercise in small sample sizes.
• Zach Britton threw his 7th consecutive scoreless appearance for his eighth save this evening, earning his green status on the closer grid. Since blowing a save on May 27th, Britton has thrown eight scoreless, racking up five saves with a 4/1 K/BB.Tommy Hunter isn’t getting his old job back anytime soon.
• Quick hits: Tyler Clippard blew up for four runs and although Soriano (14th save) is locked in, Storen might be the next in line. Ernesto Frieri gave up a couple of hits and a run in a non-save situation win tonight and as Colin mentioned, Joe Smith could see some saves along with Frieri moving forward. David Robertson did his thing striking out two for his 17th save. Pat Neshek‘s awesome season continued as he threw a scoreless ninth for his second save of the year. Rosenthal’s job is safe but Neshek could be biting into Motte and Martinez’ role on the team.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
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