What’s poppin, Razzpimples? Bullpen update time!
Don’t forget, the Razzball Bullpen Chart is manned by yours truly and updated like every single second (not really, but I stay on top of thangs for the most part). And directly below, you’ll see a current look at the Top 15 RP (in both 5×5 standard leagues and 6×6 saves/holds leagues) via our Player Rater. Subscribers also get access to the incredibly handy Relievonator Game Log, which tracks every single relief appearance from the last 14 days, including what inning they were called upon and how many batters/pitches they faced/threw.
Alrighty, let’s do it to it. (Note: Monday’s games do not factor in)
Player Rater Top 15 (5×5 Standard)
Player Rater Top 15 (6×6 w/ Holds)
Steady As They Go:
- David Bednar went like a thousand years without a save and then the Pirates went and swept the Cardinals and he got three in three days, finishing off the week with the most saves (4). He’s been arguably the best RP not named Felix Bautista all year long, and he’s shot back up to #2 on both Player Raters above. It’s where he belongs.
- Raisel Iglesias looks a little more like his old self these days. This week he had 3 SV but also took a loss. Only 1 K and 4 BB, yikes…but three came in one outing so I’m gonna chalk that up to just not feeling it that day.
- Jordan Romano had 3 SV as well, striking out three in 3 IP. Dude’s been consistent all year long and should be a complete and total stud the rest of the way.
- Devin Williams collected 2 SV in three scoreless, striking out four and walking two. Aside from walks, he’s about as good as it gets.
- Felix Bautista went ham once again, only pitching two innings but striking out four and allowing no runs/walks. Filthy 23.3 SwStr% this week, and it’s no surprise he’s tops in the league in that regard. Man’s #1 on the Player Rater for a reason!
- Emmanuel Clase had 2 SV and even had 6 K! The K stuff has been severely lacking so far this year, so 6 K is a godsend. Only allowed 2 H and 1 BB while keeping runs off the board. This is the kinda week his owners wanted to see, cuz I’ve been a little worried, not gonna lie.
On The Rise:
- Justin Lawrence just might have the ninth to himself now after recording back-to-back saves for the Rockies earlier in the week. I’ve had Pierce Johnson trending down for a couple weeks now, and you’ll see him down there again in this here recap. If there’s a COL reliever you’re gonna bother to roster, Lawrence is the one to get.
- Clay Holmes may not have a ton of saves to his name lately, but he’s been racking up some dubs in recent weeks, which just goes to show he’s still getting late-inning usage. Had 1 W and 1 SV this week, striking out five and allowing no runs in 3.1 IP. Also had a robust 42.3 CSW%. Daddy likey.
- Scott Barlow rocked a -0.72 FIP this week, striking out four in two scoreless. Earned just 1 SV cuz the Royals, but it’s nice to see him pitching so effectively. Unreal metrics this week: 25.8 SwStr% and 51.6 CSW%.
- Adbert Alzolay has been dealing. Had 1 SV and 1 HLD this week, and peep these sexy metrics: 41.7 K%, 0 BB%, 19.5 SwStr%, and 39 CSW%. Struck out five in four scoreless. His counterpart, Leiter, was much less effective. We’ll see how things go this week, but at this very moment, you gotta like Alzolay back there.
- Carlos Estevez isn’t exactly trending down, but there are some warning signs starting to crop up. He’s been one of the biggest bargains of the 2023 fantasy season thus far, but this week wasn’t exactly awe-inspiring: 12.71 FIP, 9.10 SIERA, 0:2 K:BB. It’s really pretty unfair to put him here given he only pitched in two games this week, though. Just hate to see walks and a homer with no Ks. Good news is he was 2-for-2 in save opps.
- Mark Leiter Jr. got taken deep twice this week but still managed 1 SV and 1 HLD. Also took a blown save and a loss. On one hand, he was bad, but on the other hand he had a 4:1 K:BB in 2.1 IP and also had 32.5% called+swinging strikes. But given his less than ideal performance and Alzolay’s dominance, it makes sense to me that he’s trending slightly in the wrong direction.
- Miguel Castro got annihilated by the Braves, coughing up a grand slam to Eddie Rosario in the 9th. He did earn a save in another appearance on the week, at least. I just happened to tune it to the bad outing, and his control was all over the place. Hopefully, he can get back on track.
- Dylan Floro had one terrible outing and one good outing this week, ending up with 1 SV and 1 L. He’s trending down for two reasons: 1). the metrics were very gross this week, and 2). A.J. Puk is due back very soon anyway. Edit: very soon, as in activated earlier today.
- Giovanny Gallegos‘s line this week was…oof: 1.2 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, 2 HR, 1 BB, 2 K. That’s a 27.00 ERA and 3.60 WHIP. Jordan Hicks has been really good lately, for what it’s worth…
- Pierce Johnson sucks and seems to have lost the closing job in Colorado. I think that should have happened a while ago.
Steady As They Go:
- Hector Neris had 3 HLD this week, striking out four in 2.1 scoreless. Bummer is he allowed five baserunners. Also a bummer that he’s getting the holds while Abreu isn’t cuz I’m biased and want Abreu to live up to all my hype lol.
- Erik Swanson is the posterchild for Steady As They Go among setup men. Had 2 HLD and even 1 SV this week, tossing 3.1 nearly-perfect innings. He doesn’t have the nastiest stuff around but his 11.0 K/9 is more than serviceable. And not to mention his league-leading 14 HLD (tied with Strzelecki).
- Adam Ottavino had 2 HLD and 3 K in 3.1 scoreless. The veteran just keeps getting it done.
- Brooks Raley is second in the MLB with 13 HLD, adding two more this week. He struck five in just 2.2 scoreless. Had one of those fun “blown saves” where he didn’t allow a run (not even an unearned). He’s been lights out all year and has evolved into one of the best holds guys around.
On The Rise:
- Taylor Clarke had 3 HLD this week, striking out three in 3.1 scoreless. Royals setup men ain’t sexy unless you’re in a deep league or an AL-only league, but gotta give credit where credit’s due amirite?
- Alex Young has some of the nastier stuff in the league. Did ya know that? Bet ya didn’t, cuz only nerds like me who keep reliever stats spreadsheets probably know that. Among qualified RP, only a handful of guys have a higher SwStr% than Young’s 18.2. Sporting a 28:5 K:BB in 22.2 IP. After 2 HLD this week, it’s looking like he could become the primary setup man in Cincy. He’s not there yet, but he’s been the best RP not named Diaz in that pen.
- Scott McGough is having much more success of late, collecting just 1 HLD this week but striking out five and walking just one in three scoreless. The long ball was his nemesis early on, but over the last two weeks he’s got 12 K to just 3 BB in 6.2 scoreless. The Chafin/Castro/McGough trio is kinda sexy as hell right now. Well, assuming Castro can get it together again.
- Danny Coulombe has outpitched Yennier Cano for a little while now. Going back the last two weeks, Coulombe’s WHIP is just 0.64 while Cano’s is over a full point higher. In that time, Coulombe has struck out seven and walked just one in 4.2 scoreless. Cano is giving up a ton of hits and the Ks are dropping. Bryan Baker is also struggling — to a much higher degree, in fact. Sooner or later, Coulombe is going to earn primary setup duties if these trends continue.
- Robert Stephenson got traded to the Rays. Mighta missed that one. He’s already got a hold for ’em. Rays relievers rotate faster than Goodwill stock, though he’s still worth keeping an eye on.
- Dauri Moreta snuck under my radar, not gonna lie. He has one of the nastiest pitches in the league, in fact: his slider. That thing gets thrown 57.4% of the time and has been hit exactly five times. That’s a .100 BA, which is backed up by a .127 xBA. When swung upon, it’s whiffed 48.8% of the time. Colin Holderman’s name is below, cuz while he may have been collecting holds, he’s not been effective otherwise. Moreta has. Going back two weeks, Moreta has 2 W and 1 HLD, striking out seven (with 19.0 SwStr%) and walking just one in six scoreless (okay fine, he allowed one unearned run). Just watch some Moreta highlights and look at the zippity zap his pitches have. I like zippity zap.
- Grant Anderson also has that zippity zap factor. Dude just got called up and already has 8 K in his first 3.2 career IP. No walks, no runs, only two hits, and eight strikeouts. Career -1.08 FIP with 40 CSW%. I mean, yeah, it’s only been 3.2 IP, but damn, amirite? Capital D damn. Anderson had 1 W and 1 HLD in his first week of MLB action. Don’t make any hasty decisions to add him in most formats, but if you’re in a dynasty league…maybe prioritize the dude. This year in the minors, he had 5.8 H/9, 3.5 BB/9, and 15.1 K/9. Not too shabby!
- Ben Joyce is probably already owned if you’re in a said dynasty league. He’s both looked electric and kind of been a little meh in his first taste of big league action. In 3 IP, he’s struck out five and walked none, but he’s also allowed five hits, two earned runs, and one homer. The zippity zap factor is in his favor, as is the fact that the Angels pen is pretty damn bad as a whole.
- Colin Holderman was mentioned above as being ineffective. Here’s his line over the last 14 days: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 HR, 2 BB, 5 K. Three holds in that time, at least. And 2 ER isn’t the worst, but that’s not a fun number of baserunners, not to mention he’s being outclassed by Moreta.
- Trevor Stephan allowed 6 H and 3 ER in just 4 IP, but he did at least strike out five batters while generating whiffs 18% of the time. James Karinchak was much, much better (1 W, 2 HLD, 0 ER, and 5 K in 4 IP) this week.
- Carlos Hernandez pitched just 1.1 IP and allowed 5 H and 5 ER. Said above with Clarke that Royals setup men ain’t sexy, so now Hernandez is extra less sexy.
- Yennier Cano got off to one of the best starts in recent memory, but I can’t help but feel like the wheels are wobbling and will be quick to fall off entirely. He did earn 2 HLD while allowing zero runs, but he allowed 3 H and 1 BB while failing to record a single strikeout. The stuff is just…not there lately. Is it fatigue? Is it just a bump in the road? Time will tell, I suppose.
I specialize in bullpens and I used to do some fantasy hockey as well here at Razzball. Find me on Twitter: @jkj0787. DMs are always open for questions, comments, concerns, complaints, etc. Odds are good I’m drinking black coffee, dark beer, or some form of bourbon at any given time of day.