It’s a bad night for bullpens when the Mets play the Braves

August 15, 2019

New York Mets — Pump the brakes on the Seth Lugo bandwagon after Wednesday night’s five-run abomination. Using Lugo in the seventh inning of a one-run game meant someone else was getting the save chance anyway, probably Justin Wilson. Lugo wasn’t exactly smacked around, giving up a walk and a handful of singles, but Mickey Callaway’s eagerness to use his best reliever early on makes it impossible for you to trust Lugo for saves. Our guess is Wilson gets the next shot.

Updated hierarchy: *Wilson | Lugo | Diaz.
* = closer-by-committee

Arizona Diamondbacks — One day after Torey Lovullo credited Archie Bradley’s “confidence” with saving Lovullo from “sucking [his] thumb” in his office after a loss, Bradley gave up a walk-off homer to the Rockies. No one is happier than Dodger fans, whose team didn’t take kindly to Bradley’s, uh, confidence the other night. Consider Lovullo’s thumb day-to-day.

Hierarchy remains: *Bradley | Lopez | Hirano.
* = closer-by-committee

Atlanta Braves — With a four-run lead, the Braves played it safe and called on Mark Melancon. After a groundout, Melancon gave up a walk, four hits, and a fielder’s choice, putting the go-ahead run on base. Melancon recovered to get a strikeout, and Brian Snitker brought in lefty Jerry Blevins for the platoon advantage against former teammate Michael Conforto. Blevins got the K and the save, and the Braves managed to escape with the W.

Hierarchy remains: *Melancon | Jackson | Greene.
* = closer-by-committee

Washington Nationals — For Proust, it was a madeleine: sensual vector to transcendent reverie; summoner of deep and dormant ecstasy; midwife to the ever-present past. For Closer Monkey, it is Javy Guerra. Our muse. Subject of our fourth post, ever. And so a vulture save for a 33-year-old journeyman — three innings, three runs, five hits — becomes, somehow, very much more. With Proust, we find “the vicissitudes of life become indifferent to [us], its disasters innocuous, its brevity illusory.” Here, there is no Sean Doolittle. There is no Daniel Hudson. There is definitely no Fernando Rodney. There is, at long last, only “the echo of great spaces traversed,” and a blue-check Twitter confused about what team it plays for. Until next time, Javy. May there ever be a next time.

Hierarchy remains: Doolittle | Hudson | Strickland.

St. Louis Cardinals — John Gant has been fine, but he’s no Giovanny Gallegos, the most unhittable pitcher in baseball. Gant’s appearance in garbage time on Wednesday gives us a chance to make the swap.

Updated hierarchy: Martinez | Miller | Gallegos.

Milwaukee Brewers — After another rocky outing, Josh Hader was given the day off by Craig Counsell, allowing Matt Albers to grab his third save in eight days. 

Hierarchy remains: Hader | Albers | Peralta.

1. Zack Britton — Three appearances in four days means an almost-certain day off for Aroldis Chapman.
2. Luke Jackson — Mark Melancon and Shane Greene have pitched in two straight.
3. Tony Watson — Will Smith threw 37 pitches on Tuesday and might get a second day off.

1. Yoan Lopez — Archie Bradley will have gone in three of four with an outing Thursday.
2. Aaron Bummer/Evan Marshall — Alex Colome had a 28-pitch outing on Wednesday.
3. Blake Treinen — And Liam Hendriks threw 24.