Monkey Bytes, March 30: Uribe records Milwaukee’s first save, Phillips nails down his second, Muñoz retires four four his first, Game Recaps, and more

Before delving into Friday’s high-leverage events of interest, a note about matching up with lineup pockets. Teams designated as closer-by-committees can be deceiving when focusing on a limited sample. Before a series, some managers will sit down with their relievers and provide them with which pocket they will face, not necessarily which inning they will appear in. There’s a chance the reliever who records the first save can forge a primary save share, but it’s not guaranteed unless a manager confirms it by usage pattern or in an interview. Jordan Leasure spoke about this process with Daryl Van Schouwen:

Keep this concept in mind when assessing roles in match-up-based hierarchies and for Friday’s recaps.

Milwaukee Brewers – Receiving the first save chance in the Pat Murphy match-up era, Abner Uribe faced the Mets’ 9-1-2 pocket in the bottom of the ninth. Uribe retired them in order, throwing 11 pitches (72.7 Strike%) without a whiff for his first save of the season and the second of his career. Joel Payamps fired a clean eighth, striking out two versus the 6-7-8 hitters, throwing 11 pitches (72.7 Strike%) while inducing four whiffs (36.4 SwStr%), and securing his first hold. Trevor Megill matched up with the 2-3-4 pocket in the seventh and navigated around a walk for a scoreless outing. He worked the highest leveraged moment for his first hold. Because of the order, adjusting the order but not the designation of this arm barn.

Adjusted Hierarchy: *Abner Uribe | *Joel Payamps | *Trevor Megill

Los Angeles Dodgers – Securing his second save, Evan Phillips fired a clean top of the ninth, striking out one. He threw 11 pitches (6 strikes – 54.5 Strike%) and recorded one whiff. He’s registered two strikeouts over two clean outings this season. Ryan Brasier let all three inherited runners score on a two-RBI double and a sacrifice fly during a scoreless eighth. Michael Grove struggled, giving up three hits, three earned runs, and a walk while striking out one in a combined inning of relief.

Hierarchy Remains: Evan Phillips | Joe Kelly | Daniel Hudson

Seattle Mariners – Nailing down his first save this season and the second four-out save of his career (August 25, 2022), Andrés Muñoz retired all four batters he faced, recording three strikeouts. He threw 20 pitches (60 Strike%) and generated five whiffs (25 SwStr%):

He also stranded two runners in the eighth, preserving the shutout. Ryne Stanek got credit for his first hold, allowing a hit and a walk while striking out one in one-third of the eighth. Gabe Speier stranded a runner, gave up a hit, and struck out one in one-third of the seventh for his first hold.

Hierarchy Remains: Andrés Muñoz | Ryne Stanek | Gabe Speier

Cleveland GuardiansIt felt like déjá vu all over again when Ryan Noda reached on an error with one out, then Nick Allen singled, but Emmanuel Clase bore down and induced a game-ending ground ball double play for his first save. He threw eight pitches (87.5 Strike%) and produced one whiff (12.5 SwStr%). Scott Barlow held on for his first hold, giving up an earned run and two walks while striking out one in the eighth. Hunter Gaddis notched his first hold, firing a clean seventh and striking out one. Eli Morgan retired the side in order in the sixth, for his first hold.

Adjusted Hierarchy: Emmanuel Clase | Scott Barlow | Hunter Gaddis

Philadelphia Phillies -In ascending order of appearances, Matt Strahm took over a shutout but struggled, allowing three hits and two earned runs while striking out one in one-third of the seventh inning. He gets tagged with his first blown save. Jeff Hoffman replaced him, stranding a runner, issuing a walk, and striking out one over two-thirds of an inning. Taking over a tied game in the eighth, José Alvarado struggled with his command, giving up three hits, five earned runs, and two walks while striking out one in two-thirds of an inning. He threw 30 pitches (50 Strike%) and induced one whiff, resulting in his first loss. For perspective, Alvarado allowed eight earned runs over 41.1 innings last year. Connor Brogdon took over a bases-loaded situation and issued two walks before yielding a bases-clearing double by Matt Olson. Yunior Marte worked a scoreless ninth. It’s one game, but Hoffman operated as the “fireman” and Alvarado faced a left-handed heavy lineup pocket. If things went well, perhaps Seranthony Domínguez was in line for the ninth in this progression. Stay tuned.

Hierarchy Remains: *José Alvarado | *Jeff Hoffman | *Seranthony Domínguez

Atlanta Braves – Wrapping up a lopsided win, Aaron Bummer gave up a hit, an earned run, and a walk while striking out two in the ninth. A.J. Minter fired a clean eighth, striking out two on 10 pitches (80 Strike%) and generating four whiffs (40 SwStr%). Pierce Johnson collected his first win, retiring the side in order in the seventh and striking out two. He threw 14 pitches (71.4 Strike%) with three whiffs (21.4 SwStr%). Joe Jiménez tossed a scoreless sixth, giving up a hit and striking out one.

Hierarchy Remains: Raisel Iglesias | A.J. Minter | Pierce Johnson

Pittsburgh Pirates – Taking over in the seventh, Josh Fleming earned his first save logging the last three frames. He gave up two hits, an earned run, and a walk while striking out three, throwing 58 pitches (33 strikes – 56.9 Strike%). Ryder Ryan collected his first win, working 1.2 scoreless innings, allowing a hit and striking out two. He also stranded two runners in the fifth for starter Martin Pérez. As noted on “X”, David Bednar did warm up, but was not needed for the save chance once the Pirates tacked onto their lead.

Hierarchy Remains: David Bednar | Aroldis Chapman | Ryan Borucki

Quick Hits

Colorado Rockies – In this post by Thomas Harding of, Bud Black named Justin Lawrence his closer, though it’s tempered by the team being winless losing by a combined 19 runs through two games.

Los Angeles Dodgers – This tweet may have flown below the radar, but Jack Harris mentioned Brusdar Graterol (shoulder) and Blake Treinen (lung) are “a ways away from returning”. Plan accordingly.

Closer Monkey’s filthy pitch of the day, Pierce Johnson‘s curve which he deployed while collecting a win in Philadelphia, courtesy of the Pitching Ninja.

Thanks for being a part of the Closer Monkey community!

Please consider becoming a premium subscriber for a one-time $20 donation to the site, featuring full-text emails with charts (like Muñoz’s above), column blurbs, and ad-free content.