September 29, 2023
Texas Rangers — Jose Leclerc, who we like the most in the Texas bullpen, entered in the eighth inning on Thursday, tossing a scoreless frame. That left the ninth for Aroldis Chapman, who struggled again. He was charged with two runs on two hits and a walk and did not record an out. Jonathan Hernandez relieved him and got the first two outs before allowing a game-ending RBI double to J.P. Crawford. Leclerc is the best bet for saves this weekend, though Will Smith could be in line for one Friday because he is the most-rested member of the hierarchy.
Hierarchy remains: *Leclerc | Chapman | Smith.
* = closer-by-committee
Miami Marlins — Thursday’s game against the Mets was suspended after the Marlins took the lead in the ninth inning. The game is set to resume Monday – after the regular season ends for everyone else. Whoever pitches — aside from Andrew Nardi, who got the final out of the eighth inning and could be in line for a win if he re-enters — will be facing a save situation. Meanwhile, Tanner Scott has been activated from the paternity list.
Updated hierarchy: Scott | Nardi | Robertson
Baltimore Orioles – Baltimore won its 100th game Thursday and clinched the AL East title for the first time in nine years. Their strong bullpen carried them to the end in a tight game. After Yennier Cano and Cionel Perez finished things off in the eighth, former starter Tyler Wells shut the Red Sox down in the ninth for his first save. Perez has pitched in a lot of late-and-close situations lately and deserves recognition in this hierarchy. Shintaro Fujinami, meanwhile, will get the boot now that his ERA is near 5.00 in his time with Baltimore.
Updated hierarchy: Cano | Perez | Coulombe.
Boston Red Sox — The Red Sox placed Chris Martin on the injured list with a viral infection. He ends the year with three saves, a 1.05 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 46 strikeouts across 51.1 innings. Garret Whitlock could see some extra late-inning looks this weekend.
Updated hierarchy: Jansen | Winckowski | Whitlock.
Milwaukee Brewers — Recalled from the minors earlier this week, Ethan Small was called into an unusual situation: the ninth inning with a three-run lead. He held it together, mixing in a couple of walks with a strikeout to earn his first career save. After the game, he told reporters he was surprised to enter the game at that time, adding that he needed a “win” in the majors “pretty bad.” While wins are important in fantasy baseball, we admire the chase for saves here at Closer Monkey, so well done, Mr. Small!
Hierarchy remains: Williams | Payamps | Uribe.
VULTURE SAVE WATCH
1. Aaron Bummer (CHW) – Bryan Shaw has gone in two straight.
2. Will Smith (TEX) – Jose Leclerc and Aroldis Chapman each have gone in two straight.
1. Carmen Mlodzinski (PIT) – A Friday appearance would be three of four for David Bednar.
2. Jose Alvarado (PHI) – Same as above for Craig Kimbrel.
3. A.J. Minter (ATL) – An outing Friday would be three of four and four of six for Raisel Iglesias.
4. Matt Brash (SEA) – Andres Munoz also faces three-in-four and four-in-six if he goes Friday.