Fernando Rodney locks down his second save of the year

July 5, 2019

Washington Nationals — Sean Doolittle earned a day off yesterday after throwing 76 pitches over the last four days, which left the final two innings to Wander Suero and Fernando Rodney. Suero allowed a hit to both batters he faced in the eighth before being pulled to set up a lefty-lefty matchup. After the team got to the ninth with the lead, Rodney shut the door in the ninth for his second save with the Nationals. After the game, Dave Martinez confirmed that if Doolittle is unavailable, Rodney will be the team’s closer. What a time to be alive.

Updated hierarchy: Doolittle | Rodney | Suero.

Cincinnati Reds — Raisel Iglesias has been very busy lately, going in four of the last five, but he has looked better. His outing Thursday was his third straight day of work — and his third straight scoreless appearance. He nailed down the save in a tight 1-0 win, his third save in his last five outings. So it appears Iglesias is certainly ahead of Michael Lorenzen now, as we suspected. Amir Garrett, meanwhile, is now on the injured list with a left lat strain. He’s been their best reliever to date, but the Reds will have to turn to David Hernandez and Jared Hughes for increased looks in the late innings.

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

Philadelphia Phillies — Doctors in Philadelphia are also extremely busy, as they are caring for yet another Phillies relief pitcher: Juan Nicasio. The veteran righthander was placed on the IL for a left groin strain that manager Gabe Kapler called “mild.” Adam Morgan returned from the injured list in late June and has a couple of holds since then, so he should see more activity ahead of JD Hammer and Hector Neris.

Updated hierarchy: Neris | Hammer | Morgan.

Oakland A’s — With Liam Hendriks and Blake Treinen both unavailable yesterday, the A’s turned to Lou Trivino in the eighth inning and Joakim Soria in the ninth inning to close out a win. Had Oakland not scored four runs in its half of the eighth, Soria would have earned a save opportunity against the top of the Twins’ order. He was up in the ‘pen after Trivino’s successful outing. We’ll move Soria into the hierarchy based on yesterday’s usage.

Updated hierarchy: Treinen | Hendriks | Soria.
* = closer-by-committee

St. Louis Cardinals – Carlos Martinez picked up the save Thursday, his second since Jordan Hicks was lost for the season. It’s also the second Cardinals save of three since the Hicks injury, though Dominic Leone’s save was of the extra-inning vulture variety. So it looks like Martinez has locked down the role, and after showing some resistance initially he’s now taking kindly to the “responsibility” of the role. 

Hierarchy remains: Martinez | Gant | Miller.

Boston Red Sox – The Red Sox activated Heath Hembree from the IL on Thursday, which is a huge boost to their bullpen. Hembree has been one of their best relievers of late and should soon return to high-leverage work. We’ll monitor how the Sox deploy Hembree this weekend.

Hierarchy remains: *Barnes | Workman | Brasier.
* = closer-by-committee

New York Yankees — Aroldis Chapman allowed two earned runs in his third blown save of the season, but the Yankees scored five runs in the 10th inning to retake the lead. Luis Cessa came on to get the final three outs, but he could only retire two batters and left the game with the bases loaded and one run already home. That created a save chance for David Hale, who shut the door on Tampa for his second save of the season. Zack Britton and Adam Ottavino had already pitched.

Hierarchy remains: Chapman | Britton | Ottavino.

1. Dealer’s Choice — Now that Torey Lovullo has been able to clear his head, we’ll see who he wants pitching the ninth inning for Arizona.
2. Joe Jimenez — Shane Greene has pitched in two straight.
3. Zack Britton — Aroldis Chapman needed 29 pitches during last night’s blown save.
4. Michael Lorenzen — Raisel Iglesias has appeared in three straight and four of five.
5. John Gant — Carlos Martinez has pitched in back-to-back games, though he’s only thrown 19 pitches.
6. Joe Biagini/Daniel Hudson — Ken Giles has made three straight appearances for the first time in nearly four years.

1. Joe Jimenez — If Shane Greene pitches today, that will be three in a row.
2. John Gant — Same goes for Carlos Martinez.
3. Jake Diekman — Ian Kennedy threw 21 pitches yesterday, so if he pitches today he should get Saturday off.
4. Ty Buttrey — If Hansel Robles goes today, that will be three of four for him.