Bullpen Report: May 19, 2014

Aroldis Chapman blew his first save of the year tonight against the Nationals. It’s tough to glean anything from Aroldis over just five innings pitched but he’s averaging 100 mph on his fastball and has nine strikeouts against three walks. Also, for what it’s worth Chapman didn’t blow tonight’s save in spectacular fashion, he gave a lead-off double that ended up scoring on a sacrifice fly. I wouldn’t be concerned about tonight’s blip, Chapman looks like himself after his unfortunate comebacker in spring training and should be a top three closer from here on out this season.

• With John Axford removed from the closer role, Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen have been called on for ninth inning duties in Cleveland. Shaw pitched a perfect eighth tonight but Cody Allen was unable to save the game, blowing the game on a JD Martinez homer. Cody Allen (2.47 SIERA) is likely the better pitcher and profiles more as a “classic closer” with lots of Ks and fastball velocity but Shaw (3.06 SIERA) is totally a capable reliever himself. It’s the second subpar outing in a row for Allen and I would actually wager that Shaw receives the next save opp.This situation is obviously very fluid and both need to be owned in fantasy leagues.

Greg Holland isn’t in any danger of losing his job but it’s worth noting the impressive numbers of the guys behind him in the KC bullpen. Wade Davis threw another scoreless inning tonight and now has a 1.86/1.06/1.74 ERA/FIP/xFIP with 36 strikeouts against nine walks in 19.1 innings pitched. Davis doesn’t exhibit elite control but you can get away with it with a 44.7% K%. Kelvin Herrera also threw a scoreless frame tonight and has a 1.27/2.42/3.34 ERA/FIP/xFIP line.

• About to click publish and Matt Lindstrom exited the game, hurting himself while trying to field a bunt. Scott Downs is now in the game to close it out. Keep an eye on this situation, Ronald Belisario, Daniel Webb and Scott Downs could factor into saves if Lindstrom misses any significant time.

Closer Grid:

Closer First Second DL/Minors
Arizona Addison Reed Brad Ziegler Oliver Perez J.J. Putz
Atlanta Craig Kimbrel David Carpenter Luis Avilan Jordan Walden
Baltimore Tommy Hunter Zach Britton Darren O’Day
Boston Koji Uehara Junichi Tazawa Andrew Miller
CHI (NL) Hector Rondon Justin Grimm James Russell Pedro Strop
CHI (AL) Matt Lindstrom Ronald Belisario Daniel Webb Nate Jones
Cincy Aroldis Chapman Jonathan Broxton Sam LeCure
Cleveland Bryan Shaw Cody Allen Scott Atchison
Colorado LaTroy Hawkins Adam Ottavino Rex Brothers
Detroit Joe Nathan Joba Chamberlain Al Alburquerque Joel Hanrahan
Houston Chad Qualls Kyle Farnsworth Josh Zeid Jesse Crain
KC Greg Holland Wade Davis Aaron Crow
LAA Ernesto Frieri Joe Smith Michael Kohn Dane de la Rosa
LAD Kenley Jansen Chris Perez Chris Withrow
Miami Steve Cishek A.J. Ramos Mike Dunn
Milwaukee Francisco Rodriguez Will Smith Brandon Kintzler Jim Henderson
Minnesota Glen Perkins Jared Burton Casey Fien
NY (NL) Jenrry Mejia Jose Valverde Jeurys Familia Bobby Parnell
NY (AL) David Robertson Shawn Kelley Adam Warren
Oakland Sean Doolittle Luke Gregerson Jim Johnson
Philly Jonathan Papelbon Mike Adams Antonio Bastardo
Pittsburgh Mark Melancon Tony Watson Justin Wilson Jason Grilli
St. Louis Trevor Rosenthal Carlos Martinez Kevin Siegrist Jason Motte
SD Huston Street Joaquin Benoit Alex Torres
SF Sergio Romo Santiago Casilla Jeremy Affeldt
Seattle Fernando Rodney Danny Farquhar Tom Wilhelmsen
TB Grant Balfour Joel Peralta Jake McGee
Texas Joakim Soria Alexi Ogando Jason Frasor Neftali Feliz
Toronto Casey Janssen Brett Cecil Steve Delabar Sergio Santos
Wash. Rafael Soriano Tyler Clippard Drew Storen

[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


22 Responses to “Bullpen Report: May 19, 2014”

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  1. Mark Geoffriau says:

    I do not like this usage of “comebacker.” Growing up I always heard it used to describe a grounder back to the pitcher, particularly one that takes just two or three large hops. It was not a catch-all term for every hit back up the middle.

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  2. Mike W says:

    I could actually see Atchison getting a chance as well with Allen and Shaw struggling in their past couple outings.

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    • Jackson says:

      Shaw struggling ? His last 9 outings 7.1 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 5 K, 0 BB. You’re tough.

      I think Ben has it right. Atchison has pitched better than ever and is listed 2nd chair here with no sign of Axford on the board. A 7th inning holds guy for now.

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      • Roger says:

        guys… no one is taking over that closer role… it’ll remain a committee until Axford re-takes the role

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      • Mike Wimmer says:

        Shaw’s last two outings have been kinda iffy, granted one of those was in a blowout. I’m not saying Shaw has been bad, but he probably hasn’t done enough to run away with the closers spot.

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      • Jackson says:

        Axford’s not going to retake anything. He hasn’t been dominant since 2011 and was a questionable off-season signing. Shaw had ONE bad recent outing, not a couple, giving up a triple to Donaldson and a double to Moss. Donaldson’s an all-star. No crime giving a hit there.

        It’ll remain a committee for a while for two reasons
        #1 because it should
        #2 Francona likes being ‘the man’

        Ben has it right.

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      • Roger says:

        Nope… assuming Axford shows any kind of competency he’ll get it back. I’m a Cleveland guy and avid fantasy player so I follow things very closely here… and how does Ben have it right? It says Shaw at the top instead of “committee” which it is… Shaw isn’t first for the closer role… no one is

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  3. deezy333 says:

    Allen :(

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  4. Petricka subed in for Scott Downs. So you see this as a situational thing at the time or could he be Ventura’s go to guy till Linstrom returns?

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    • Roger says:

      I’d bet on Belisario and Webb (who pitched the last 3 days so he was unavailable tonight) over Petricka (who has a bad K/BB rate)

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    • Andy says:

      I picked up Webb, but this seems like it could be a mess. Webb pitched in the 5th one night over the weekend and the 8th in another. Will be interesting to see, seemed like Lindstrom was really limping.

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  5. Roger says:

    This is pretty good (drastic improvement from previous reports), but has just a couple problems…
    1. The Indians very likely will not anoint a new closer… they’ll use a committee until they feel Axford is ready to re-take the closer role
    2. Britton looks like the closer over Hunter right now
    3. Veras and Ramirez are behind Rondon, not Grimm and Russell
    4. Familia is behind Mejia, not Valverde
    5. Frasor is ahead of Ogando behind Soria

    I found a site who has a closer depth chart that I agree with for the most part – http://www.therotosaurus.com/2014-mlb-closer-chart/

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    • lowcountryjoe says:

      Was it your intention to comment on such a way that you came across as a know-it-all? Much of what you wrote seems to have some merit.It’s too bad that I found the first sentence and your tone off-putting enough to want to respond to it and inform you that I found it uncool and unwelcomed.

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      • Roger says:

        sorry for rubbing you the wrong way, I tell it how it is… not trying to hurt people’s feelings but we’re just talking fantasy baseball here… didn’t realize saying it was a drastic improvement was a bad thing

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    • Dave K says:

      It was never stated that the Indians would “anoint” a new closer. The passage on the Indians reads, “This situation is obviously very fluid.” Shaw is likely to get the next chance. If someone is looking to vulture a save, it’s probably a safe recommendation.

      You and your dinosaur website base depth charts on the same information Rotographs does. It’s conjecture and opinion based on observation. Just because you “agree” with a website, does not mean the information is better or more reliable.

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    • Thanks for the input. It’s a tough call for many of the next-in-line guys and we do our best educated guesses. If it was as simple as the eighth inning guy becomes closer life would be easier but sometimes the setup man stays setting up while another reliever gets a save chance.

      Zach Britton may “look” like the closer right now but nothing has been announced and there has only been one save opp since Hunter’s last blunder. There is value in keeping Hunter around. If we were to change the closer role so aggressively each time, teams may drop a guy like Hunter who very well could just be skipping out on a few save opps but then regain the role. Instead I prefer to advise Britton and O’Day are both must owns while this situation plays itself out.

      If people need more specifics or have questions about their own teams, we do our best to answer in the comments.

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      • Roger says:

        Sorry, didn’t mean for it to come across as mean there… meant it as a compliment mostly honestly. Keep up the solid work

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  6. Texpope says:

    In Chicago, keep an eye on Neil Ramirez. Former first round pick, the Cubbies moved him to the bullpen after he struck out 127 batters in 103 innings for the Rangers in AA last year. Since coming up, 15/2 K/BB in 9 IP. And his average fastball is sitting at 94.4 mph. Rondon looks good right now, but I suspect Ramirez will be climbing over Grimm and Russell on the charts.

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  7. novaether says:

    A little bit of googling on Lindstrom’s “sublexing peroneal (outside) tendon in his left ankle” makes it sound like he’ll be out 4-6 weeks or even more if he needs surgery. Granted, I’m not a doctor, but he’s they’ve moved Lindstrom to the DL so he’s gone for now. Will it be Webb or Belisario or other?

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