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)
Back to the old format this week! Didn’t like last week’s as much as I thought I would. So, Camilo Doval had himself a nice week: 4 SV and 4 K in 3.2 scoreless. Hasn’t been the start his owners hoped for, but all of a sudden he’s up among the main pack of RP with 7 SV on the year. Only six dudes have more. Walks have been an issue, as the 14th percentile BB% mark indicates. And he’s getting hit hella hard. But other than those blemishes, he’s getting the job done.
Jason Adam notched 3 SV for the Rays. He probably isn’t the sole closer, but it’s looking mighty clear that he’s pretty much the dude you want until Fairbanks returns. Adam is pretty much doing what he did last year and should be owned in all formats. Only 61% rostered in Yahoo at the moment.
Alex Lange still gettin jiggy wit it, racking up 3 SV and 6 K in three scoreless. He’s rocking a 21:6 K:BB in 15.2 IP, allowing just 2 ER. Straight sex. And keeping with the straight sex motif, he’s rostered in 69% of Yahoo leagues. Should be a whole lot more, but alas. Had 21.2 SwStr% and 42.3 CSW% on the week. Delicious.
Emmanuel Clase had 3 SV as well, though he wasn’t as sexy as the other names above. Good news is that despite the up-and-down nature of his 2023 to this point, it looks like he still has a very firm grip on the closing duties for the Guardians. Leads the league with 12 SV despite already having blown three. And dude only has 11 K on the year, too. That’s a little worrisome.
Kenley Jansen is back and looking dandy. No worries there. Had 2 SV and 4 K in two scoreless.
Evan Phillips is pulling away with the Dodgers gig. I don’t expect he gets every single save chance moving forward, but make sure you get a piece of this action if you’re in the 19% of Yahoo leagues or 80% (!) of ESPN leagues that still have him on the wire.
Pierce Johnson had 2 SV. Gave up some hits and runs but did at least have 4 K as well. Looks like Daniel Bard is still getting eased into things, so hold on to your Johnson shares for now. I find it hard to believe Bard is completely demoted already given the money they’re paying him, though.
Carlos Estevez is still that dude. Just 1 SV this week, but he also scored a win and struck out six in 3 IP. No hits, no runs, and just one walk. Folks was real worried given how bad his spring was, though if you read closely you’d have known he was told to experiment with grips and release points. They’ve had confidence in him all along, and it looks like they were right: 1.08 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 22 K, and 9 SVHD on the year.
Mark Leiter Jr. is your headline boy, he’s just stuck way down here cuz I sort by “SV” for the week and just hammer away at some notes. Leiter had 2 SVHD (one of each) this week, striking out eight and walking none in 5.2 IP. His one run allowed was unearned. This guy is all but the closer at this point. Might be Adbert Alzolay gets some looks given the nature of high-leverage-ness going around bullpens in this day and age, cuz Leiter is clearly the best arm they have in that pen.
Michael King had 1 SV, striking out seven in 4.1 scoreless. Dude has picked up where he left off before injury shortened his 2022 breakout season. Clay Holmes is very close to being out of the closing mix, seeing the 8th and 7th innings respectively in his last two outings. This is a situation to monitor very closely. Deeper leagues or AL-only formats might even see Ian Hamilton with some value, as he snagged a save this week as well.
It was a rough week for Will Smith, Andrew Chafin, and Kyle Finnegan, even though Finnegan managed to get 2 SV. They all got smacked around and collected a blown save and/or a loss. Not really worried about either of them for now. Let’s just hope a better week is in store.
Chris Martin got back to his sexy setup ways upon Jansen’s return. Martin had 3 HLD and 3 K in three scoreless. That’s now 6 HLD on the year, three behind the league lead.
Sam Moll of all people also had 3 HLD this past week. You gotta be hella desperate or in a hella deep league to have this guy.
One other dude had 3 HLD on the week, and it was Ryan Thompson. He might be worth your time while Fairbanks is out if you’re really hurting for holds. But you’d really have to be hurting. He’s very boring.
Justin Topa has emerged as the main setup man for the Mariners while Andres Munoz remains on the IL. Topa had 1 SV and 2 HLD this week, striking out three in three scoreless innings. He’s up to 7 HLD in 2023.
Ruh roh. Even though he had 2 HLD, Aroldis Chapman showed some worrying signs this week. Never like to see a 1:3 K:BB, but also his FB velo dipped and averaged only 98.5 MPH this week. Maybe just a blip on the radar, we’ll see.
I’ll give Trevor Gott a shoutout for 7 K in 3.1 IP. Snagged a hold while he was at it. He’s up to 6 HLD on the year. Definitely worth a look with Munoz still out.
Jorge Lopez, Miguel Castro, Jose Alvarado, Brusdar Graterol, and Peter Strzelecki all struggled to varying degrees. No one’s really in danger of losing holds opportunities yet probably. Strzelecki is tied with Colin Holderman for the lead in holds (9), but he got shellacked this week: 2.1 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 1 BB, and 4 K. As for Graterol, maybe his struggles just solidify Phillips’s chances for saves in the near (or maybe also distant) future. Alvarado’s freakishly good start was bound to dry up sooner or later. Phillies ain’t been too hot lately, with Strahm’s random save being the only one all week. I’m still Team Alvarado.
Actually, one more note: Colin Holderman didn’t record a hold but fired off an immaculate inning back on Thursday against Tampa Bay. Love to see it!
I do some fantasy baseball as well as some fantasy hockey 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.