Workman not working well for the Phillies

September 18, 2020

Philadelphia Phillies – Brandon Workman had a disastrous outing for the Phillies on Thursday, coming on in a 6-6 game in the ninth before giving up three runs, two of which came on a solo HR and an RBI triple before he was yanked. He was charged with the loss and has now allowed nine earned runs in 11 2/3 innings with the Phillies. He allowed just nine earned runs all last season! At this point, you have to wonder how long he’ll be used in high-leverage situations moving forward. Hector Neris, who didn’t pitch Thursday, is a logical bet for a save chance over the next few days.

Hierarchy remains: *Workman | Neris | Phelps.
* = closer-by-committee

San Francisco Giants – Sam Selman earned his first career save Thursday, securing a 6-4 win for the Giants, who find themselves in a playoff race. Tony Watson pitched the seventh inning with the 8-9-1 hitters (two righties) due up. This is Gabe Kapler, so the manager’s unorthodox use of late-inning arms shouldn’t be all that surprising. Selman has actually pitched pretty well this season (20 Ks in 16.2 IP with a 2.70 ERA), and in some high-leverage spots, so perhaps he’s starting to earn Kapler’s trust.

Updated hierarchy: *Watson | Rogers | Selman.
* = closer-by-committee

Houston Astros – As predicted, Ryan Pressly got the night off Thursday, but so did Andre Scrubb, as lefty Brooks Raley instead was called upon to secure his first major league save. With two lefties due up in the ninth, Dusty Baker turned to Raley, who has been very effective against lefties this season (.148 BAA, .466 OPS against). 

Hierarchy remains: Pressly | Scrubb | Peacock.

1. Jeurys Familia – Edwin Diaz and Justin Wilson have both gone in three straight.
2. Hector Neris – Brandon Workman had another disastrous outing Thursday and might not be thrown out there again today.

1. Ryan Brasier – If Matt Barnes goes Friday, that will be four games in six days for the Sox closer.
2. Felix Pena – A Friday outing would be three of four for Ty Buttrey.
3. Travis Bergen – Same as above for Stefan Crichton and Junior Guerra. 
4. Andre Scrubb – Ditto for Ryan Pressly.
5. Zack Britton – A Friday outing would be two straight for Aroldis Chapman. He likely won’t be allowed to go three in a row. 

Stefan Crichton picks up another save while Ken Giles goes back on the IL

September 17, 2020

Arizona Diamondbacks –Stefan Crichton converted another save last night and is clearly the top option for saves in Arizona down the stretch. Junior Guerra on short rest was used in the 8th inning, so we are sliding him into the setup spot and he could certainly step in if Crichton has a setback, but this doesn’t look like a committee anymore

Updated hierarchy: Crichton | Guerra | Bergen.

Washington Nationals – After Daniel Hudson couldn’t hold a 1 run lead in the 9th, the save chance in extra innings fell to Kyle McGowin. McGowin converted the save in style, striking out the side on 17 pitches. McGowin has yet to give up a run over 5 appearances this year, but Washington had already used their whole hierarchy by the time McGowin got into the game, so we will keep things as they are for now.

Hierarchy remains: Hudson | Harris | Suero.

Los Angeles Dodgers — As predicted in the Vulture Save Watch, Kenley Jansen and Blake Treinen got the night off which meant Pedro Baez got the last two outs of a 2 run game to pick up his second save of the year. This win clinched a playoff berth for the Dodgers, so they may start giving their top arms a bit more rest, which will be easier with Joe Kelly just being activated from the IL. We will wait to see how Kelly is used, but he could see some high leverage innings down the stretch.

Hierarchy remains: Jansen | Treinen | Baez.

Toronto Blue Jays —  Ken Giles is almost certainly done for the year as Toronto placed him back on the IL with a flexor strain. Giles has had a forgettable season marred by injuries and will likely be focusing on 2021. We will slot A.J. Cole into his spot on the hierarchy. 

Updated hierarchy: *Dolis | Bass | Cole.
* = closer-by-committee

1. Travis Bergen – Both Stefan Chrichton and Junior Guerra have pitched back to back days.
2. Andre Scrubb – Ryan Pressly has pitched back to back, including 22 pitches last night.
3. Jeurys Familia / Justin Wilson – both Edwin Diaz and Justin Wilson have pitched back to back.
4. Brad Boxberger – with a doubleheader today, Boxberger could find a save chance if Brandon Kintzler pitches in the first game, as it would be back to back for him.

1. Scott Barlow/Jesse Hahn – Greg Holland threw 19 pitches yesterday, so if he gets in today expect a day off Friday.

Hector Neris notches a save for the Phillies

September 16, 2020

Philadelphia Phillies – With Brandon Workman seemingly available, the Phillies turned to Hector Neris to close out Tuesday’s 4-1 win over the Mets. Manager Joe Girardi said that he might switch things up in the late innings, and it looks like he’s staying true to his word. We’ll slap a committee tag on this bullpen for now, but don’t be surprised if Neris wins his job back with another strong outing.

Hierarchy remains: *Workman | Neris | Phelps.
* = closer-by-committee

Washington Nationals – Tanner Rainey landed on the 10-day IL with a right flexor strain, and it’s hard to imagine the Nationals will let him pitch again this season.

Updated hierarchy: Hudson | Harris | Suero.

Tampa Bay Rays — The Rays activated Oliver Drake from the IL on Tuesday. Drake will be eased back into action and probably won’t pitch on back-to-back days right away, but we’re sliding him back into this committee as someone who may eventually see a save chance. 

Updated hierarchy: *Anderson | Castillo | Drake.
* = closer-by-committee

Arizona Diamondbacks — Stefan Crichton collected his second save of the season on Tuesday with a perfect ninth inning. He looks like the best option for saves in Arizona for the next two weeks. Junior Guerra deserves some credit as well for his effort last night, as he entered the sixth inning with one out and the go-ahead run on third before promptly striking out Mike Trout and inducing a flyout from Anthony Rendon.

Hierarchy remains: *Crichton | Bergen | Guerra.
* = closer-by-committee

Cincinnati Reds – Amir Garrett picked up the save for a tired Reds bullpen on Tuesday, which shouldn’t come as a surprise to you, noted reader of the Vulture Save Watch.

Hierarchy remains: Iglesias | Bradley | Jones.

Pittsburgh Pirates – Pirates GM Ben Cherington had some bad news for anyone holding out hope that Keone Kela will return this season, as he said that the calendar is starting to work against them. 

Hierarchy remains: Rodriguez | Turley | Stratton.


1. Blake Treinen/Pedro Baez – Kenley Jansen needed 28 pitches last night and has gone in three of four. Blake Treinen has also pitched in three of four but has thrown far fewer pitches, including just four last night.

1. Ryan Brasier/Phillips Valdez – If Matt Barnes and Ryan Brasier pitch today it will be two straight and three of four.
2. Evan Marshall – An Alex Colome outing today would be three of four.
3. Yohan Ramirez – If Yoshihisa Hirano pitches today that will be four of five.

Kyle Crick goes back on the IL

September 15, 2020

Pittsburgh Pirates – The Pirates placed Kyle Crick back on the IL on Monday. That seriously limits Richard Rodriguez’s competition for the closer job, if there was any in the first place. We’ll remove his asterisk and welcome Chris Stratton to the hierarchy.

Updated hierarchy: Rodriguez | Turley | Stratton.

St. Louis Cardinals – With Andrew Miller having gone two straight, John Gant nursing an injury, and Alex Reyes having pitched earlier in the game, it was lefty Tyler Webb who was summoned for the extra-inning save chance. Webb got the job done, and will ascend to the hierarchy if Gant needs more than just a couple days off.

Hierarchy remains: *Miller | Gant | Reyes.
* = closer-by-committee


1. Yohan Ramirez – Yoshihisa Hirano has gone three straight.
2. Alex Claudio/Corey Knebel – Josh Hader and Devin Williams have gone three of four.
3. Nate Jones/Amir Garrett – Raisel Iglesias (3 IP), Archie Bradley (3 IP), and Nate Jones (2 IP) have gone back to back.
4. Evan Marshall – Alex Colome has gone back to back and three of four.

1. Brad Boxberger – If Brandon Kintzler goes tonight, it’ll be back to back.

Matt Andriese collects two saves in two days

September 14, 2020

Los Angeles Angels – We knew Ty Buttrey wouldn’t pitch on Sunday, but we didn’t predict that veteran Matt Andriese would throw the final two innings, nabbing his second save in as many nights. After a brutal August, Andriese has allowed just 1 hit in 5.2 innings in September.

Hierarchy remains: *Buttrey | Pena | Mayers.
* = closer-by-committee


1. Nate Jones/Amir Garrett – Raisel Iglesias and Archie Bradley both pitched 2 innings yesterday and the Reds have a doubleheader.
2. Blake Treinen – Kenley Jansen has gone back to back.
3. Yohan Ramirez – Yoshihisa Hirano has gone back to back and the Mariners have a doubleheader today.

1. Evan Marshall – If Alex Colome goes today, it’ll be back to back and three of four.