These last two weeks have been a bumpy ride in many bullpens. We’ve had COVID issues, regular old injuries and wear down, and some long-awaited blow-ups. We’re into the final month of the slog that has been a return to 162 games. If you’ve made it this far you probably feel like a bomber returning from The Battle Of Berlin with more than a few holes. There are likely to be continued opportunities for new faces in the saves chase every day. Straighten up and fly right!

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The past two weeks have been a return to normality after the trade deadline craziness. Now we’re back to orange on the panic scale, where we’ve learned to live in both fantasy and reality of late. August can be a time that arms start to feel the miles of three-quarters of a baseball season. If you’re still in the hunt and grinding saves a well-timed stash a week early can pay immense dividends. Who’s FAAB isn’t running thin, after all?

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We’re back to chasing speed this week. Keep an eye towards shuffling batting orders, rookies on the horizon, and second-half surges. The NFL pre-season will soon have its hooks in us. There may be some surprising names on the wire thanks to this. Maybe suggest a surprisingly friendly trade for the thing you need most. Grind on in the name of the faceless god, free category juice.

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Not much has changed since we last talked. Only A THIRD OF THE BULLPENS have been drastically altered. The Brain Freeze is Slurpee Big Gulp level this week. At least the dust is starting to settle from the flurricane of activity. Exercise some caution on those new openings. Often the less expensive, less glitzy alternative has the same odds to net some saves.

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Last week we dug into closers who came out of the break hot. Let’s give the hitters their turn. Who’s squeezing some some speed out on the bases since the All Star break?

  • Someone must have told Gleyber Torres they were playing the 2019 Orioles all of last week because he has been a man on fire. Since the break he’s hit three bombs and swiped four bags. The talent is there. Torres just hasn’t lived up to it. Maybe he can help those rostering him to dig out of the hole they likely find themselves in.
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The All-Star break seems to have helped some folks but wasn’t enough of a break for others. Let’s see who’s working to earn your trust back.

  • The Edwin Diaz implosion continues. He’s blown two saves this week while Trevor May has picked up two saves.
  • The break did Aroldis Chapman some good. His velocity was better and he got the save Tuesday despite giving up a solo homer. Keep your finger on the eject button if he wears out again soon.
  • Heath Hembree seems like the only righty the Reds can trust at the moment. He’s likely to earn the bigger share of the saves until the Cincy bullpen upheaval.
  • Tyler Wells has worked his way into the mix for the ninth in Baltimore. The mountain of a man brings big K numbers but is also volatile.
  • The Pirates DFA’d Kyle Crick after some blowups. That makes David  Bednar the top option if Richard Rodriguez gets traded.
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We’re reaching the point of the baseball season that feels like the Bastogne episode of Band Of Brothers depicting the Battle of the Bulge. We’re running out of everything, can’t help the injured, and hold our breath that disaster isn’t looming. It’s also the turning point. Ground gained now will decide who’s in for the stretch run. The ever-changing saves landscape is a big part of that. Get in a foxhole with someone you can trust.

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