May 21, 2018
Washington Nationals – After appearing in exactly half of the team’s first 42 games, Ryan Madson was placed on the disabled list with a sore pectoral muscle. Brandon Kintzler should be the main set-up man in his absence, while old friend Shawn Kelley returns to the hierarchy for the first time since last June.
Updated hierarchy: Doolittle | Kintzler | Kelley.
Los Angeles Angels – Amidst the turmoil in the Angels bullpen as of late, Blake Parker has quietly found his form. On Sunday, he logged his 9th straight scoreless outing, picking up his second save of the year. If he gets another one, he’ll jump to the top of this perpetually-in-flux hierarchy.
Updated hierarchy: *Anderson | Parker | Johnson.
* = closer-by-committee
Chicago White Sox – With Nate Jones getting the afternoon off, Jace Fry picked up his first save of the year on Sunday, and it was yet another scoreless, hitless inning. Fry, a lefty with crazy-deceptive stuff, has now stretched his hitless-innings streak to 8.1 and jumps his way up to the handcuff position.
Updated hierarchy: *Jones | Fry | Rondon.
* = closer-by-committee
Texas Rangers – Chris Martin was activated from the disabled list, and looked strong in his return outing, striking out two hitters in a clean inning. We’ll move him back up to his former position behind Keone Kela until he gives us a reason to do otherwise.
Updated hierarchy: Kela | Martin | Diekman.
New York Mets – Rather than use Jeurys Familia for the third straight day, the Mets left Robert Gsellman in for the 9th inning after he’d gotten the final two outs of the 8th. Gsellman converted the gsave, and has surpassed AJ Ramos as the most likely man to get an opportunity when Familia is unavailable. Given Ramos’s control problems thus far (10 BBs in 16.2 innings), he might have fallen behind Seth Lugo as well.
Updated hierarchy: Familia | Gsellman | Ramos.
Miami Marlins – The Braves rallied for 6 runs in a walkoff victory Sunday afternoon, with the first four coming against Brad Ziegler. With Drew Steckenrider and Kyle Barraclough having already pitched, Tayron Guerrero was tasked with getting the game’s final out, and he wasn’t up to the task. Ziegler had converted four straight saves prior to the outing, so we don’t actually think he’s out of a job yet, but at some point, the fact that he has given up literally four times as many earned runs this year as Barraclough (in fewer innings!) has to catch up with him.
Hierarchy remains: Ziegler | Barraclough | Steckenrider.
Los Angeles Dodgers – Josh Fields came on with the Dodgers up three runs in the 8th, then stayed on for the 9th once they stretched the lead to five. He probably would’ve stayed on regardless, though, since Kenley Jansen was likely unavailable. But you read the Vulture Save Watch yesterday, so you already knew that, didn’t you?
Hierarchy remains: Jansen | Fields | Baez.
St. Louis Cardinals – Jordan Hicks threw two pitches at 105 mph yesterday. So yeah, that’s a thing that happened.
Updated hierarchy: Norris | Hicks | Holland.
VULTURE SAVE WATCH
1. Kyle Barraclough – Brad Ziegler threw 30 pitches yesterday and might not be available tonight.
1. Kirby Yates/Craig Stammen – If Brad Hand goes tonight, it’ll be back to back and three of four. Yates and Stammen have also seen a lot of work lately, though, so their usage will dictate who gets a possible save opp tomorrow.