Much like the classic Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium (MECC) PC game, The Oregon Trail, we finish our bullpen parade out west. Apologies if the research in this post is light, I stayed up all night playing TOT on the Wayback Machine. Suck it deer, I shot so many of you I can’t even carry all the meat. Much like the game, your journey to saves accumulation is a series of decisions fraught with peril. Do your best not to die of dysentery. In this example, Wade Davis is dysentery.
AL East | AL Central | AL West
NL East | NL Central | NL West
|Closer||Archie Bradley – The former starter has had quality stretches in the pen. It always feels like something is going wrong for him, however. Whether it’s his role or a blister or Arizona not having a humidor he’s been a liability at times. There are also threats below him on this list.|
|Setup||Kevin Ginkel – The young man wasted no time working his way into high leverage spots after his call up. He’s the closer in waiting and not a bad spec play given Bradley’s bad luck. In the meantime his ratios and Ks are helpful.|
|Useful Arm||Jon Duplantier – This time a year ago people were very high on Duplantier. He had ups and downs in his first taste of the bigs. That isn’t surprising. There are paths to innings in the pen and the rotation despite how crowded it feels right now.|
|Saves Dart||Hector Rondon – Veterans get the first look nine times out of ten. Don’t bother checking that, it’s a real stat.|
|Closer||Wade Davis – Despite the dysentery comp is there a cheaper source of 10-20 saves in the baseball universe? Just be ready to abandon this party member at the first snake bite.|
|Setup||Scott Oberg – That’s where Oberg comes in. He’s possibly the second cheapest source of 10-20 saves around. Pair them together and now you have a binary closer. I don’t have any concerns about the blood clot that cost him the end of 2019.|
|Useful Arm||Carlos Estevez – Hard thrower who’s had lots of shots at leverage innings. Maybe it clicks at some point. He can K anyone.|
|Saves Dart||Jairo Diaz – Diaz was the first to get saves opps when Davis had his usual mid-season issues last year. He wasn’t able to nail the job down but that faith speaks to something.|
|Closer||Kenley Jansen – Doesn’t it just feel like this is the season the wheels come all the way off for Jansen? The velo has declined, he’s had health scares, and last year couldn’t keep the ball in the park at times. He’s one of my favorite all-time closers but the end is near.|
|Setup||Joe Kelly – Kelly was their insurance policy for 2019 and couldn’t handle the ninth. He’s probably leap-frogged should a switch need to be made at closer.|
|Useful Arm||Tony Gonsolin – This is your new Ross Stripling. He’s a good pitcher who will get innings somehow. Stash him and wait.|
|Saves Dart||Blake Treinen – The Witch was never healthy in 2019. If that was your first taste owning him welcome to the club. Dust yourself off and get back on this horse. I wouldn’t be shocked if Treinen gets 20 wins+saves.|
|San Diego Padres||Razzers|
|Closer||Kirby Yates – The darling of wait on your closer pundits in 2019. He’s a very good pitcher and the stuff is real. Some of his peripherals suggest he may have the slightest bit of regression so be careful on how much you pay.|
|Setup||Craig Stammen – It’s odd that Stammen didn’t take a job with a better chance to close somewhere else. He’s a reliable setup man and could land a handful of saves when Yates is unavailable.|
|Useful Arm||Jose Castillo – I’m a Jose Castillo Stan. His stuff was filthy and in 2018 he started displaying elite command. Then his arm fell off. His path to saves is now blocked. If his recovery from arm issues is smooth and his command is back a high K/9 with elite ratios could be in the cards.|
|Saves Dart||Andres Munoz – This is the team’s future closer. He brings the heat and a nasty power slider. He’s valuable if holds are scored but less so in the saves only universe.|
|San Francisco Giants||Razzers|
|Co-Closer||Shaun Anderson – Take the most unpredictable bullpen and add in Gabe Kapler. It’s probably not worth the time we’re taking to talk about it. Anderson seems to be people’s first guess.|
|Co-Closer||Tony Watson – Watson is the most proven arm left in this pen. He’s a lefty, however. He’s also a contact pitcher. Co-closer it is.|
|Useful Arm||Jarlin Garcia – Some had Jarlin pegged as the Marlins closer before they put him on waivers. The Giants love backloading their pen with closer types.|
|Saves Dart||Jandel Gustave – I could write literally any of the other names in this bullpen here. The Itch likes Dany Rodriguez. Trevor Gott and Tyler Rogers also landed saves in 2019. Let’s just project six different RPs to get 7 saves and call it a day.|
How do you view Emilio Pagan in SD?
Mainly what he was on the Rays at the start of 2019. A nice depth piece and some insurance at closer. He could leapfrog Stammen as the primary setup man, I suppose.
Congrats on the Rotowire pod spot with Jeff, well done brother!
Which side would you prefer for this year and beyond, Olson/Rogers or Muncy/Yates. Thanks
I have that pretty even. Maybe a hair towards Muncy side for this year.
You know, coming into 2019 I was all about Baez if Kenley struggled. Well he got his chances and only had one save with six blown. I just think he’s a good not great setup guy (who’s job they gave to a free agent sociopath).
Love your stuff.
a. Multiple stalker, first time to comment (this year!).
b. As a survivor of 6 tropical diseases in 6 tours of duty to Africa, I’d take dysentery over shigella. Shigella is salmonella’s ugly African cousin (sorry Africa). The body’s way to get rid of the bacteria is diarrhea. Terrible, almost went into rigor mortis and I lost 32 pounds on my 6’6″ frame (from 187 pounds to 154 pounds). Who needs Oprah diets when you have trips to Africa and getting shigella! So, yeah. I think you might have to downgrade your Davis forecast from dysentery to shigella or typhoid fever (got that one too).
c. Oh, man. The Giants’ pen smells bad. Why’d they let Melancon go? I really like Munoz in ’20. Won’t he close by July 1 in SD? I’ll put him my hardon for him in my pants until ’21 unless he gets injured in which case I’ll chop it off.
Thanks for reading (and now commenting). Getting a tropical disease in a third world country is my nightmare, so good on ya.
Getting any of the money they owed Melancon off the books was a huge win. Munoz’s path to the ninth would be San Diego falling out of it so far that they got good offers for Yates. Otherwise, not much shot.
Where do you see Graterol pitching this year and next? Is he a good grab and hold in dynasty leagues? Would you cough up significant FAAB for him?
It’s possible a rookie jumps into a leverage role but the odds are against it. I wouldn’t spend much.