Baltimore Orioles

Baltimore Orioles Fantasy Baseball Daily Bullpen Updates and Closer Depth Chart

Closer 1st in line 2nd in line 2015 Closer Updated
BAL Zach Britton Darren O'Day Andrew Miller Zach Britton 8/18/14

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Previous updates:

August 18, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles have an embarrassment of riches in their bullpen right now, as Andrew Miller has wonderfully complemented the dominant duo of Darren O’Day and Zach Britton. Miller got the 8th inning hold last night, and has been splitting those opportunities with O’Day over the past several weeks, depending on match ups. This does make it hard to guess who would be the beneficiary should Britton go down — but we’ll leave the hierarchy as is for the time being with the above qualifier in place.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Miller.

August 4, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Andrew Miller got his third 8th inning hold in four appearances with Baltimore, and along with Darren O’Day has given the Orioles a dominant righty-lefty punch in the 8th inning.

Updated hierarchy: Britton | O’Day | Miller.

August 2, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – One day after trading for Andrew Miller, the Orioles threw their new big lefty reliever out there in the 8th inning to protect a one run lead.  He was brought on after a walk to Austin Jackson put the tying run on base and two lefties were due up next.  Miller has the ability to get out both righties and lefties but with right-handers O’Day and Hunter already in the back end of the O’s bullpen, Miller should get the call mostly against lefties in the later innings.  That being said, if anything were to happen to closer Zach Britton, Miller would likely be in the mix for saves.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

August 1, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles acquired lefty Andrew Miller from the Red Sox on Thursday as GM Dan Duquette added depth to an already strong Baltimore bullpen. Miller, who is effective against batters on both sides of the plate, is expected to help Tommy Hunter and Darren O’Day set up closer Zach Britton. After Hunter threw 25 pitches in Thursday’s 13-inning loss, Miller may get called upon on Friday in a high-leverage spot.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

July 23, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Zach Britton looked dominant on Tuesday night, and he has earned his last three saves with a miserly 25 combined pitches.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

July 15, 2014
Baltimore Orioles - The Orioles sit in first place at the All-Star break, but won’t likely be making a big splash at the deadline for a reliever like last year when they acquired K-Rod. Zach Britton has emerged quite nicely as the closer with Darren O’Day right behind him as a strong secondary option. At this point, Tommy Hunter doesn’t figure to be returning to the closer’s role unless a serious collapse occurs. TRADE DEADLINE BUY/SELL: None

June 13, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Ryan Webb picked up his ninth hold of the season on Thursday and did so against the meat of Toronto’s lineup in the eighth inning, his one blemish a double by Jose Bautista. Darren O’Day got the night off after a 21-pitch outing on Wednesday and Tommy Hunter is still the next-likely arm to get a save opp if O’Day and Zach Britton struggle, but Webb is proving himself to be a fourth option for manager Buck Showalter.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

June 9, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter returned from the DL on Sunday. He’s got a ways to go before he reclaims the closer role, as both Zach Britton and Darren O’Day are sporting sub-1.00 ERAs. But Hunter’s past experience does slot him in 3rd place behind his two otherworldly colleagues. If they both struggle, he could get the job back.

Updated hierarchy: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

June 8, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter pitched on a rehab assignment yesterday, striking out two in a perfect inning.  Hunter could be activated as soon as today, but with the way Britton and O’Day are pitching, we don’t expect Hunter to immediately reclaim his closer’s job.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Webb.

May 28, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – In a tight game with the Brewers on Tuesday, Baltimore used Ryan Webb in the seventh, Darren O’Day and Brian Matusz in the eighth (the latter as a LOOGY), and Zach Britton (working on his third straight day) in the ninth. A swinging bunt resulted in Britton’s first blown save, and he should expect some rest tomorrow.

Hierarchy remains: Britton | O’Day | Webb.

May 23, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter was placed on the disabled list on Thursday with a strained groin. There’s no indication of when he was injured, but this might be an indication of why the former closer had been so ineffective as of late.

Updated hierarchy: Britton | O’Day | Webb.

May 15, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Two days after Tommy Hunter blew his second straight save chance, Buck Showalter summoned lefty Zach Britton to get the final three outs of a 2-1 game.  Britton needed only 12 pitches to convert, registering his first career save.  After the game, Showalter was noncommittal about the closer role going forward, complimenting Britton’s work but also offering high praise to Darren O’Day.  It looks like this could develop into a committee, but for now, we’ll take the guy with the 95 mph sinker.

Updated hierarchy: Britton | O’Day | Hunter.

May 14, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – After an overturned call on a Rajai Davis steal, Tommy Hunter blew his second straight save and boasts a 21.60 ERA over his last four appearances. Hunter has allowed 29 baserunners in his 15 IP so far this year, and the cries to replace him are getting louder. Buck Showalter is speaking in generalities thus far: “You’re alert to it, you keep an eye on it. And if there’s some adjustments that need to be made, we’ll make them . . . we’ll constantly see what gives us the best option to pitch nine innings and be competitive and continue to be in first place. And that’s what we’ll do.” Here’s a link to his postgame news conference.

Tommy Hunter to Hot Seat. Hierarchy remains: Hunter | Britton | O’Day.

May 9, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter got the night off on Thursday after two rather challenging saves on each of the previous two days, and Zach Britton was also unavailable, having thrown 3.1 innings over the previous four games. That left Darren O’Day to pick up a vulture save; the submariner will continue sharing set-up duties with Britton going forward.

Hierarchy remains: Hunter | Britton | O’Day.

May 8, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Converted starter Zach Britton continues to ascend in the Baltimore bullpen; he’s picked up two straight eighth-inning holds for the O’s.

Hierarchy change: Hunter | Britton | O’Day.

May 2, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – He started the season as a long reliever, but Zach Britton has been getting more high-leverage innings as of late.  In the first game of the Orioles’ doubleheader on Thursday, he pitched the 7th inning and earned his 4th hold of the year.  Hierarchy change: Zach Britton to 2nd in line, replacing Brian Matusz.

April 28, 2014
Baltimore Orioles - Just five days removed from giving up four earned runs to the Blue Jays, Evan Meek got knocked around again on Sunday, and has now given up 8 ERs in his last 1.1 innings pitched.  It’s unlikely he’ll be trusted with any more important innings until he gets things turned around.  Hierarchy change: Brian Matusz to 2nd in line, replacing Evan Meek.

April 19, 2014
Baltimore Orioles - Darren O’Day picked up the save last night.  He got the last out of the 8th inning with the Orioles up 3 and then Orioles added another run in the top of the 9th.  O’Day stayed on to finish the game and record his first save of the season.  No hierarchy change.

April 1, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Evan Meek entered the eighth inning of Monday’s opener and recorded the first two outs before giving way to Brian Matusz for a lefty-lefty matchup to close the inning. Meek was the last player to make the opening-day roster, but the 2010 All-Star was immediately thrown into a high-leverage situation and escaped without much trouble. Hierarchy change: Evan Meek to 2nd in line, replacing Ryan Webb.

March 13, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter had a very good WHIP last year, but he doesn’t miss enough bats and gives up too many home runs. Ranked #26 in our preseason closer rankings.

March 11, 2014
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter has the inside track to the closer role to begin the season after the Orioles traded away Jim Johnson during the offseason. Darren O’Day will be right on his heels however, as will former Marlin Ryan Webb. Webb didn’t wow anyone last year, but he does have a good sinker and can also baffle hitters with a slider and change-up. Starting 2014 hierarchy: Closer – Tommy Hunter, Set-up – Darren O’Day, 2nd in line – Ryan Webb.

August 30, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – As expected, it was Jim Johnson who got the call in the 9th for the Orioles last night, officially bringing to a close Tommy Hunter’s reign at closer.  Johnson should see all of the save opps going forward, unless he falters again.  No hierarchy change.

August 28, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Though Jim Johnson made a strong case for reclaiming his closer job in his last outing, it took five days before either he or Tommy Hunter appeared in a game again.  It finally happened tonight, with Hunter being summoned in the middle of the 8th inning, whereupon he promptly gave up the go-ahead run and took the loss.  Though Buck Showalter was far from supportive of Johnson a week ago (on the night that he used Hunter to get the save), the Orioles former closer appears to have won his old job back.  He does, however, immediately land on the Hot Seat, and will need a few saves in a row to get off of it.  Hierarchy change: Jim Johnson to Closer, Tommy Hunter to Set-up.

August 24, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson picked up the save on Friday night as he pitched a perfect inning with 1 strikeout.  Right now it looks like both Tommy Hunter and Jim Johnson are worth owning.  If Jim Johnson is able to string together a couple good outings he should reclaim his role as closer.  However, with the Orioles in the midst of a playoff chase they cannot afford any more blown saves from Johnson so if he struggles in his next outing, Tommy Hunter could continue to see save opportunities. No hierarchy change.

August 21, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – In a wild 9th inning, Buck Showalter first left Darren O’Day on the mound to try to get the first out, and then yanked him in favor of Brian Matusz after the submariner allowed the first runner to reach.  Matusz walked the only hitter he faced before being pulled in favor of Tommy Hunter, who worked his way through the remainder of the inning to earn the save.  Postgame, Showalter gave no endorsement to embattled closer Jim Johnson, saying the Orioles would do what they could to win the rest of the way.  Given Hunter’s successful outing tonight, he’s probably the best player to add, though Francisco Rodriguez, Matusz, O’Day, and Johnson could all be in the mix.  Hierarchy change: Tommy Hunter to Closer, Jim Johnson to Set-up, Francisco Rodriguez to 2nd in line.

August 15, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson blew his third straight save and ninth of the year on Wednesday. Even before the game, the Baltimore Sun was asking its readers whether Johnson should be demoted, with 92% saying yes at the time of this report. Although Buck Showalter insists that he “can’t live in that world,” won’t “shoot the wounded,” and has no intention to give any save opportunities to K-Rod, we’ve heard that tune before. Johnson can’t afford another mistake. Hierarchy change: Francisco Rodriguez to Set-up, Tommy Hunter to 2nd in line, Jim Johnson to Hot Seat.

August 10, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter pitched the 10th inning to pick up the save last night.  Jim Johnson blew the save in the 9th but Francisco Rodriguez was still available.  It looks like Tommy Hunter is the best option to pick up saves for the Orioles if Johnson is unavailable. Hierarchy change: Tommy Hunter to Set-up, Francisco Rodriguez to 2nd in line.

July 24, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – As we reported last night, the Orioles have traded for Francisco Rodriguez and are likely to put him to immediate use in the set-up role. Jim Johnson is now on notice. Hierarchy change: Francisco Rodriguez to Set-up, Tommy Hunter to 2nd in line.

July 23, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles traded for Francisco Rodriguez on Tuesday.  It is unlikely that K-Rod immediately replaces Jim Johnson as closer, especially considering Johnson currently leads the majors in saves.  However, Johnson also has blown six saves this year and if he blows a couple more, the Orioles could turn to Rodriguez. Hierarchy change: Francisco Rodriguez to Set-up, Tommy Hunter to 2nd in line.

July 22, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – After Jim Johnson was used in two straight games, Darren O’Day was used to pick up the save on Sunday night. No hierarchy change.

July 17, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – In the thick of an extremely competitive AL East race, the O’s are likely to stay with their current approach in the bullpen: Darren O’Day and Tommy Hunter pitching effectively in front of an inconsistent Jim Johnson. TRADE DEADLINE BUY/SELL: None.

July 6, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson blew his sixth save of the season last night.  Johnson saw his ERA climb over 4 and, with the way Tommy Hunter has been pitching, he could be in danger of losing his job if he continues to pitch poorly. Jim Johnson to Hot Seat.

June 29, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Tommy Hunter picked up the save on Friday night.  Jim Johnson was given the night off after pitching in three of the past four games.    No hierarchy change.

June 19, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Tuesday night marked the third straight eighth-inning appearance for Tommy Hunter; in two of those games, Buck Showalter used Darren O’Day earlier, including with a four-run lead in the 6th on Tuesday. Both men are pitching very well, but Hunter has nosed ahead. Hierarchy change: Tommy Hunter to Set-up, Darren O’Day to 2nd in line.

May 27, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson picked up the save on Saturday but blew another one on Sunday.  The blown save on Sunday was his fourth of the season and he is still very much on the hot seat.  No hierarchy change.

May 21, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – In under a week, a Jim Johnson blown save has gone from historical oddity to disturbing three-time trend. It’s likely that Johnson, never conventionally dominant, is simply reverting to the mean via a run of particularly bad luck. On the heels of a six-game losing streak in the competitive AL East, however, Buck Showalter may not long have the luxury of keeping faith in his large righthander. Jim Johnson to Hot Seat.

May 15, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson blew the save last night, managing to squeeze four singles, a hit batsman, and three outs from a mere 13 pitches. Of course he’s in no danger, as it was his first blown save since last July, a string of 35 successes broken. Perhaps someone could inform the Oriole “fans” on TwitterNo hierarchy change.

May 8, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Pedro Strop continues to slide down the Baltimore bullpen hierarchy, while Tommy Hunter was summoned again in a late/close situation and picked up his second vulture win in four days. Hierarchy change: Tommy Hunter to 2nd in line, replacing Pedro Strop.

May 6, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Darren O’Day on Sunday entered the game in the 8th inning with a few runners on and got out of the jam, retiring the first man he faced.  With the Orioles up 4, he stayed on for the 9th inning, and picked up his first save of the season.  O’Day has had a tremendous season so far, but he’s not a threat to take Jim Johnson’s job at this point.  No hierarchy change.

April 22, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Nearly all season, Darren O’Day has served as the 8th inning man for the Orioles.  Pedro Strop was the go-to set-up man for Baltimore last year, but has struggled out of the box this year, having posted a 9.45 ERA through the season’s first three weeks.  He pitched yesterday in the 7th inning of a game the Orioles were losing, and will need to get back on track before he’s used in high-leverage situations again.  Hierarchy change: Darren O’Day to Set-up, Pedro Strop to 2nd in line.

April 21, 2013
Baltimore Orioles - Tommy Hunter picked up a three inning save in the second game of the double header yesterday.  Hunter has pitched relatively well this season out of the bullpen, but he still does not currently factor into the Orioles late inning options. No hierarchy change.

February 24, 2013
Baltimore Orioles – Starting 2013 hierarchy: Closer- Jim Johnson, Set-up- Pedro Strop, 2nd in line- Darren O’Day.  

July 27, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Submariner Darren O’Day pitched the 7th inning last night, picking up his 6th hold of the year. He now has a 2.97 ERA and has been pitching in higher-leverage spots than Matt Lindstrom as of late. Hierarchy change: Darren O’Day to 2nd in line, replacing Matt Lindstrom.

July 13, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles bullpen has been spectacular, top to bottom, thus far this year. Jim Johnson and Pedro Strop have been solid in their roles, and the Orioles are unlikely to seek any help at the deadline. They’re leading the race for the second Wild Card and aren’t going to be selling, either. TRADE DEADLINE BUY/SELL: None.

June 30, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Matt Lindstrom got the final out of the 7th inning on Friday, and eventually earned the win in his second appearance since returning from the DL. The hard-throwing righty has a 1.80 ERA on the season, and given his past closer experience, he’d likely be the guy the Orioles went to if Jim Johnson and Pedro Strop were unavailable. Hierarchy change: Matt Lindstrom to 2nd in line, replacing Darren O’Day.

June 11, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Darren O’Day picked up his 4th win of the year on Sunday, pitching a scoreless frame in the 10th inning. The submariner now has a 1.78 ERA and has shown that he can consistently get both righties and lefties out. Hierarchy change: Darren O’Day to 2nd in line, replacing Luis Ayala.

May 19, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Pedro Strop picked up a save in the 11th inning on Friday. As noted in yesterday’s Vulture Save Watch, Jim Johnson had pitched three nights in a row and had a day off. No hierarchy change.

May 5, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Luis Ayala pitched two innings in a tie game Friday, and has now gone 13 innings without allowing a run this season. He’s surpassed Matt Lindstrom on the depth chart. Hierarchy change: Luis Ayala to 2nd in line, replacing Matt Lindstrom.

April 27, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – With Jim Johnson hospitalized all week with a mystery illness, the Orioles have had to turn elsewhere in the ninth during their last three games. After two straight saves for Pedro Strop, Thursday was Luis Ayala’s turn. Manager Buck Showalter says Johnson could be released from the hospital Friday “if he can hold the food down.” No hierarchy change.

April 26, 2012
Baltimore Orioles – Jim Johnson remained hospitalized on Wednesday and Pedro Strop again got the save. Johnson is still the closer when he comes back but Strop is definitely the guy to own as Johnson’s backup. No hierarchy change.

April 25, 2012
Baltimore Orioles
– Pedro Strop got the save last night as Jim Johnson spent Monday night in a hospital with flulike symptoms and was unavailable. No hierarchy change.

April 14, 2012
Baltimore Orioles
– Pedro Strop pitched in the 8th last night with the Orioles up one. Strop has only given up one run so far this season while Kevin Gregg has gotten off to a slow start. Hierarchy change: Pedro Strop to Set-up, replacing Kevin Gregg.

March 24, 2012
Baltimore Orioles- Jim Johnson remains the closer after taking the job from Kevin Gregg last season. Gregg is being actively shopped by the O’s, but for now remains the setup man. Matt Lindstrom, acquired in the offseason via a trade with the Rockies, is expected to be the 7th-inning man. Starting 2012 hierarchy: Closer- Jim Johnson, Set-up- Kevin Gregg, 2nd in line- Matt Lindstrom.

Sept. 25, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- With Jim Johnson having thrown 25 pitches the night before, as well as having pitched in 4 of the previous 5 games, the Orioles gave Kevin Gregg another save chance, and the veteran delivered. No hierarchy change.

Sept. 23, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Jim Johnson was given the night off after pitching on three consecutive nights. Kevin Gregg got the save in his stead. No hierarchy change.

Sept. 20, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Since being acquired in the Mike Gonzalez deal, Pedro Strop has been quietly solid for the Orioles. He was one of four relievers the O’s used to bridge the gap between their starting pitcher and closer Jim Johnson last night, and currently sports a sub-3 ERA. Hierarchy change: Pedro Strop to 2nd in line, replacing Chris Jakubauskas.

Sept. 13, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Jim Johnson picked up the save tonight. Kevin Gregg was available, having not pitched in three days, so it appears that the Orioles have finally handed the job to the hard-throwing sinkerballer. Hierarchy change: Jim Johnson to Closer, Kevin Gregg to Set-up.

Sept. 10, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Kevin Gregg was rested last night after throwing 52 pitches in the previous two games, so Jim Johnson pitched the ninth, picking up his 4th save of the season. No hierarchy change.

Sept. 8, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Jim Johnson picked up an 11th inning save last night after Kevin Gregg had already pitched. No hierarchy change.

Sept. 1, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- With the trade of Mike Gonzalez, Jim Johnson returns to the set-up role for now. The O’s still want to give him a start or two though, so this could change quickly. Hierarchy change: Johnson to Set-up, Jakubauskas to 2nd in line.

Aug. 25, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Mike Gonzalez looked sharp again for Baltimore, striking out all three batters he faced in the 8th. The O’s are looking to move Jim Johnson in to the rotation, so Gonzalez may assume the set-up role soon. Hierarchy change: Gonzalez to Set-Up, Johnson to 2nd in line.

Aug. 21, 2011
Baltimore Orioles- Jim Johnson pitched 3 scoreless innings last night, while Mike Gonzalez was used for only 0.2 innings in the 6th. While Gonzalez has more career saves, Johnson is clearly the best pitcher in the Orioles bullpen, including closer Kevin Gregg, who blew the save last night. Hierarchy change: Johnson to Set-Up, Gonzalez to 2nd in line. Gregg to Hot Seat.

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