August 21, 2014
San Diego Padres — As predicted in the Tuesday Vulture Save Watch, Kevin Quackenbush filled in for the injured Joaquin Benoit and picked up his first career save on Wednesday. After the game, Bud Black said that the team is considering placing Benoit on the disabled list, and will take the next day or two to assess Benoit’s condition.
Hierarchy remains: Benoit | Quackenbush | Thayer.
New York Mets — Jenrry Mejia is running out of body parts to injure. On Wednesday, he added a stiff back to his hernia and sore calf, which is a sentence that I can’t believe I’m writing about a 24-year-old professional athlete. Jeurys Familia picked up the five-out save while Mejia convalesced. With the Mets off tomorrow, Mejia believes that he’ll be ready for Friday’s game in LA, but this has gone far enough for us to speculate that Familia will close in 2015 (if not before), while Mejia moves to West Palm Beach and starts going everywhere on an electric scooter.
Hierarchy remains: Mejia | Familia | Black.
Houston Astros — Chad Qualls was unavailable with back stiffness on Wednesday, and Bo Porter surprised everyone by calling on Jose Veras for the save. Veras had pitched only once in the past week, and he let the tying run get as close as the warning track, but he still managed to pick up his first save in six opportunities this season. Josh Fields pitched the eighth and Tony Sipp had thrown 27 pitches on Tuesday, so let’s not get too excited about Jose just yet. Qualls’s injury is not expected to be serious.
Hierarchy remains: Qualls | Fields | Sipp.
Texas Rangers — After giving up two solo home runs and putting the tying run on base with a walk, Neftali Feliz made two unlikely escapes. First he convinced Ron Washington to let him stay in the game, then he struck out Donovan Solano on five mid-90s fastballs. The Rangers were encouraged by Feliz’s increased velocity, but they could do without the added drama.
Hierarchy remains: Feliz | Cotts | Tolleson.
Philadelphia Phillies — Ken Giles is in some impressive company as the pitcher with the sixth-best K rate in the game this season; naturally, he struck out the side in the eighth on Wednesday.
Hierarchy remains: Papelbon | Giles | Bastardo.
VULTURE SAVE WATCH
1. Jason Grilli, Los Angeles Angels — Huston Street and Joe Smith have each pitched on five of the last six (and six of the last eight) days. Kevin Jepsen has pitched in three of four, including 28 pitches last night. Jason Grilli? Tan. Rested. Ready.
2. Kevin Quackenbush, San Diego Padres — Joaquin Benoit will be out at least another day or two.
3. Josh Fields, Houston Astros — If Chad Qualls isn’t ready to go today, Bo Porter will probably turn to Fields.