Bullpen Report 7.5.17 July 5, 2017  |  Justin Klein

Zach Britton is scheduled to be activated from the disabled list and return to the Orioles bullpen today, Wednesday July 7th. After missing the second half of April Britton returned in early May and pitched two innings before going back on the disabled list. This time he’s expected to stay activated and is presumably totally healthy. Despite his health the Orioles are going to have him operate in lower leverage situations upon his activation. Then, if his outings are smooth and successful he will work his way back into the higher leverage situations and take back his job as the closer for Baltimore. Because of this Brad Brach is worth holding onto in every format as he should continue to see save chances for now. If you’re like me and you dropped Brach the last time that Britton was activated you will be conservative and wait until Zach has fully taken the job away and nailed down a couple of saves. Britton has looked good in his recent rehab appearances as he didn’t allow any runs and struck out a few batters. If you have him on your DL feel free to activate him and slot him in your fake team’s bullpen. He should hopefully be back in the closer’s role before you know it. I’m guessing he makes two or three appearances before sliding back into the role, assuming that those appearances go well.

The Rangers have issues at the back of their bullpen these days as Matt Bush has been removed from the closing role. Unfortunately for Texas their best reliever thus far this season, Keone Kela, has recently hit the DL with a biceps strain. Kela is expected back when first eligible on July 14th. Currently available in 89% of Yahoo leagues he should be added and stashed in nearly every format. Unless Bush is able to take the job back and post a string of successful outings Keone should get a chance to notch some saves upon being activated. While Bush is currently out as the closer he’s also one of the best bets to notch saves in Texas’ bullpen. It doesn’t make much sense, but that’s where we’re at with this shady group. To Bush’s credit he has gone and sandwiched his horrible outing on June 30th with two clean innings before and since. Currently available in 45% of Yahoo leagues he’s a good addition for those in the hunt for saves. Like I said previously there’s a chance that he takes the job back and runs with it, but in all likelihood he’ll be sharing the gig for the next week or two and then could possibly lose it to Kela if he’s not able to set himself apart from the group. While fantasy owners and the Rangers are waitig for Kela to get healthy the other options for closing out games include but aren’t limited to Jose Leclerc, Alex Claudio and the recently signed Jason Grilli. They are available in 95%, 100% and 97% of Yahoo leagues. Grilli recently pitched a clean inning on the third, but was awful before that with the Blue Jays. Claudio is an interesting option but has given up a run or more in two of his last three outings and doesn’t move the needle in the strikeout department. Meanwhile Leclerc has been tremendous this season as he’s managed a 3.24 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and a 39:15 K:BB across 25 innings pitched. If anyone will challenge Bush for saves in the short term Leclerc is the best bet and the first one that I would add of the trio. Then Grilli and then Claudio, and I would only roster them if I were desperate for saves. It will be interesting to see how the closer situation shakes out and is definitely worth monitoring.



In St. Louis Trevor Rosenthal appeared to be on the brink of taking the closing gig for the Cardinals before he gave up a run in a save situation before allowing a run and loading the bases in his next appearance. Rosenthal was removed and Matt Bowman was tasked with getting the last out and he did so while notching the save. It’s worth noting that Seung Hwan Oh had pitched in the eighth inning in that contest in front of Rosenthal. Both Oh and Rosenthal are decent bets for save chances going forward. While Oh is owned in 92% of Yahoo leagues you can go and pick up Rosenthal in 73% of Yahoo leagues right now. I would grab him if he were available as he could soon be in line for a save. His ratios ahven’t been great this season, but his is racking up the K’s and should continue to do so. There’s a chance that Oh fully takes the job back, but there’s also a chance that Rosenthal takes it and runs with it. Heck, Bowman could even get some save chances if needed. In deeper leagues he’s probably not worth speculating on yet, but worth monitoring nonetheless.

The Nationals bullpen continues to be an ever burning tire fire as Matt Albers posted four consecutive appearances before blowing a save to the Mets on July 3rd. After notching an out Albers allowed a game tying HR to Curtis Granderson. He would go on to bw awarded the win in that contest in what is another good piece of evidence in why we should “kill the win.” After pitching poorly, blowing the save and allowing a run Albers was the winning pitcher. That doesn’t make sense and we can do better folks. In enny case Enny Romero is also in the mix for saves for the Naitonals even though he’s not good at the pitching of late. Romero has allowed three earned runs in his last two innings pitched and has been shaky at best this season. With both Koda Glover and Shawn Kelley both out with injuries (lower back tightness and a strained trapezius, respectfully) it appears that this duo will remain in the saves mix for now. Albers is the far better option at the moment and is currently free to pick up in 83% of Yahoo leagues. He should be added in most formats because saves are saves are saves. Meanwhile Romero is available in 95% of Yahoo leagues and should be added in deeper formats or anywhere where desperation for saves is at a high level. Hopefully the Nationals trade for an arm or three in the near future. As always this situation is worth monitoring.

In San Francisco Sam Dyson has found new life with the Giants as he’s closed out their last two victories and managed to post four consecutive appearances. Currently floating around in the free agent pool in 55% of Yahoo leagues Dyson should be picked up in nearly all formats. While he was awful earlier this season with the Rangers he has been successful in a closing role before and should be useful as long as he can keep the job in San Francisco. Mark Melancon received a PRP injection into his elbow a week ago and there’s been no word on him since then. Because the Giants are out of contention and also have Melancon signed for a few more seasons there is no reason to rush him back. They will certainly take their time letting him recuperate and because of this Dyson could be in the closing role for awhile as long as he’s moderately successful. Sure there is a chance that Sam falls on his face again, but more than likely he’ll be decent enough to keep the gig. I recently grabbed him in a couple of leagues and plan on holding onto him in both while he’s useful. There’s a chance that that could be awhile.

Without further ado, I give you the almighty closer chart; kneel before thee:


LA Dodgers Kenley Jansen Pedro Baez
& Sergio Romo
Boston Red Sox Craig Kimbrel Matt Barnes & Joe Kelly Tyler Thornburg
& Carson Smith
Colorado Rockies Greg Holland Adam Ottavino & Jake McGee
Chicago Cubs Wade Davis Koji Uehara
& Carl Edwards Jr
New York Yankees Aroldis Chapman Dellin Betances & Tyler Clippard
Milwaukee Brewers Corey Knebel Jacob Barnes & Carlos Torres Neftali Feliz
Toronto Blue Jays Roberto Osuna Ryan Tepara & Danny Barnes
Cincinnati Reds Raisel Iglesias Michael Lorenzen
& Drew Storen
Cleveland Indians Cody Allen & Andrew Miller Bryan Shaw
Pittsburgh Pirates Felipe Rivero Juan Nicasio & Daniel Hudson Tony Watson
Houston Astros Ken Giles Will Harris
& Chris Devenski
Seattle Mariners Edwin Diaz James Pazos & Steve Cishek
KC Royals Kelvin Herrera Joakim Soria
& Matt Strahm
Chicago White Sox David Robertson Nate Jones
& Dan Jennings
New York Mets Addison Reed Hansel Robles & Fernando Salas Jeurys Familia
Arizona Diamondbacks Fernando Rodney Archie Bradley & Jorge DeLaRosa
St Louis Cardinals Seung hwan Oh & Trevor Rosenthal Brett Cecil & Matt Bowman
Tampa Bay Rays Alex Colome Tommy Hunter
& Brad Boxberger
Baltimore Orioles Brad Brach Darren O’Day Zach Britton
Detroit Tigers Justin Wilson Alex Wilson
& Shane Green
Miami Marlins AJ Ramos Brad Ziegler & Kyle Barraclough
LA Angels of Anaheim Bud Norris Cam Bedrosian & David Hernandez
Atlanta Braves Jim Johnson Arodys Vizcaino
& Jose Ramirez
Philadelphia Phillies Hector Neris Pat Neshek & Joaquin Benoit
San Diego Padres Brandon Maurer Ryan Buchter
& Brad Hand
Oakland Athletics Santiago Casilla & Sean Doolittle Ryan Madson
& Liam Hendricks
Minnesota Twins Brandon Kintzler Ryan Pressley
& Matt Belisle
Glen Perkins
SF Giants Sam Dyson Hunter Strickland & George Kontos Mark Melancon
Texas Rangers Matt Bush, Jose Leclerc & Alex Caludio Jeremy Jeffress
& Jason Grilli
Keone Kela
Washington Nationals Matt Albers & Enny Romero Blake Treinen & Sammy Solis Koda Glover & Shawn Kelley
updated: 7/5/17

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