Joaquin Benoit’s season is finished

September 28, 2016

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Toronto Blue Jays – Joaquin Benoit’s season is over after he injured his calf in Monday’s “brawl” with the Yankees. Expect Joe Biagini to see an expanded role in Benoit’s absence as the Jays fight for a playoff berth.

Updated hierarchy: Osuna | Grilli | Biagini.

New York Yankees – Dellin Betances had pitched in two straight games, so Tyler Clippard collected the save on Tuesday to snap the Red Sox’ 11-game win streak.

Hierarchy remains: Betances | Clippard | Warren.

Chicago Cubs — The Cubs took a 6-1 lead into the ninth inning on Tuesday, but when Justin Grimm got just one out and allowed three runs, Joe Maddon turned to Felix Pena to close the door on the Pirates and pick up his first career save. Aroldis Chapman had appeared in two straight games, and with the Cubs having already clinched the best record in baseball, don’t expect Chapman to be overworked entering the postseason.

Hierarchy remains: Chapman | Rondon | Strop.

VULTURE SAVE WATCH
1. Hector Rondon/Pedro Strop, Chicago Cubs – Just in case Aroldis Chapman continues to be rested for October, you may see the Cubs turn to Hector Rondon or Pedro Strop in the ninth. With a plethora of solid options, Joe Maddon could turn to anybody over the final couple days of the season.

 

Blue Jays bullpen in shambles as playoffs approach

September 27, 2016

Seattle Mariners – In a game with significant playoff implications, Edwin Diaz got torched by the Astros in the 9th inning, blowing his third save of the season. Luckily for Diaz, his team was able to bail him out by scratching out a run in the 11th to take the lead. In the bottom of the 11th, Nick Vincent kept Mariners fans on edge as he wobbled his way through the last three outs, earning his third save of the season. Down the stretch, we expect the Mariners to stick with Diaz, who has been solid lately, boasting a sub-1.00 WHIP in his last 30 appearances.

Hierarchy remains: Diaz | Cishek | Vincent.

Toronto Blue Jays – Thirty-nine year old Jason Grilli was tapped to finish off the Yankees in the ninth innings with the Jays up one run. He was only able to record one out before being replaced, but in the meantime he had surrendered 2 home runs and the lead. His outing last night was Grilli’s 65th appearance of the season, a career high, and John Gibbons may be hesitant to use ol’ Grilled Cheese in big spots down the stretch. But if he wants to look elsewhere, he may not have the services of Joaquin Benoit, who didn’t even pitch yesterday but still managed to get injured in one of the bench-clearing incidents during the game. If Benoit can’t serve as Roberto Osuna’s handcuff as a result, perhaps Grilli will get another chance, or Gibbons could look to platoon Joe Biagini and (gulp) Brett Cecil in the 8th.

Updated hierarchy: Osuna | Benoit | Grilli.

New York Yankees – Following Grilli’s “melt-down” *ducks*, Tommy Layne nabbed his first save of the season. He is not expected to be among the Yankee’s late inning plans for the end of the season.

Hierarchy remains: Betances | Clippard | Warren.

VULTURE SAVE WATCH
1. Luke Gregerson, Houston Astros – Ken Giles has pitched in two straight and three of four. He has thrown 96 pitches over his last four appearances.

Updated MLB Closer Depth Chart

Closer 1st in line 2nd in line Updated Closer 1st in line 2nd in line Updated
BAL Britton Brach Givens 9/19/16 ATL Johnson Cabrera Simmons 9/24/16
BOS Kimbrel Uehara Ziegler 9/24/16 MIA Ramos Phelps Rodney 9/21/16
NYY Betances Clippard Warren 9/28/16 NYM Familia Reed Salas 9/24/16
TB Colome Cedeno Whitley 9/23/16 PHI *Gomez Mariot Neris 9/25/16
TOR Osuna Grilli Biagini 9/27/16 WAS Melancon Kelley Treinen 9/24/16
.                    
CHW Robertson Jones Jennings 9/5/16 CHC Chapman Rondon Strop 9/28/16
CLE Allen Miller Shaw 9/1/16 CIN *Iglesias Cingrani Lorenzen 9/26/16
DET Rodriguez Rondon J.Wilson 9/15/16 MIL Thornburg Knebel Torres 9/24/16
KC Davis Herrera Soria 9/25/16 PIT Watson Rivero Bastardo 9/24/16
MIN Kintzler Pressly Rogers 9/14/16 STL Oh Siegrist Bowman 9/16/16
    .            
HOU Giles Gregerson Harris 9/25/16 ARI *Hudson Delgado Barrett 9/16/16
LAA *Bailey Ramirez Guerra 9/6/16 COL Ottavino Logan McGee 9/12/16
OAK Madson Dull Doolittle 9/19/16 LAD Jansen Blanton Baez 9/7/16
SEA Diaz Cishek Vincent 9/27/16 SD Maurer Hand Buchter 9/26/16
TEX Dyson Bush Diekman 9/23/16 SF Romo Law Smith 9/25/16

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* = closer-by-committee

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Raisel Iglesias likely to get any remaining Reds saves

September 26, 2016

Cincinnati Reds – Save opportunities are few and far between in Cincinnati, but if there are any to be had in the season’s final week, it’s a good bet that Raisel Iglesias will be the recipient. Iglesias has converted the last two Cincinnati saves (yesterday and Sept. 12 — told you they were pretty infrequent) and has pitched much better than Tony Cingrani, who has struggled down the stretch.

Updated hierarchy: *Iglesias | Cingrani | Lorenzen.
* = closer-by-committee

San Diego Padres – Brad Hand finished the 8th inning for the Padres and then stayed on for the 9th, presumably to pitch to Brandon Belt, who was due up second. But Hand was cruising, so after retiring Belt, he also got the game’s final out, picking up his first save of the season. Outside of San Diego, it’s likely that few people have heard about the job that the lefty is doing, but the bullpen certainly seems to suit him, as he’s now struck out 105 hitters on the season in just 85.2 innings.

Updated hierarchy: Maurer | Hand | Buchter.