• Tom Wilhelmsen needed 19 pitches in Toronto to earn his 26th save of 2012. Wilhelmsen surrendered a walk, but fanned two and induced a fly ball to lock down his seventh consecutive save. The Mariners ninth-inning man is now 4-3 on the year with 26 saves, a 2.50 ERA (1.14 WHIP) and a 2.33 K/BB. Wilhelmsen’s save tally is good enough for 12th-best season in club history, which is a huge accomplishment considering he didn’t take over the role until June 4th — 59 games into the season.
• Luke Gregerson notched his seventh save of the season tonight for the Padres while filling in for injured closer Huston Street. The right-hander allowed a free pass and a hit, but induced three ground ball outs to seal the Cardinals’ fate. While Gregerson perched atop the hill for the Friars, Huston Street was busy tossing a simulated game to Andy Parrino and catcher Ali Solis. Street’s rehab has finally progressed to the point where he’s allowed to cover first base — a major hurdle he has to clear to return from the calf strain that landed him in the disabled list on August 11th. Padres’ manager Bud Black expects to have a “clearer picture on Street’s Friday.”
• Jonathan Papelbon gave up a walk, but struck out the Marlins in the ninth en route to his 34th save of the year. The Phillies’ closer has given up just one earned run in his last 13 outings, and tonight’s effort improved Papelbon’s ERA to 2.44 — the lowest it’s been since June 20th (2.28)
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: Grant Balfour (OAK) vs. LAA
It look like a pitcher’s duel is brewing tomorrow afternoon in the Bay Area as Brett Anderson and Jered Weaver are scheduled to face-off in the series finale. Anderson has been stellar in his four starts since returning from the disabled list and should keep the Atheltics within striking distance for closer Grant Balfour.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]