Brad Boxberger continues to do a great job in the 9th inning for the Diamondbacks. He’s 12-for-13 in save conversions with a 2.00 ERA and 24 Ks over 18 innings. He tossed two shutout innings over the last week with two Ks and one save. Archie Bradley struggled on May 13th when he allowed two runs, two hits, and one home run over one inning to the Nationals leading to a loss. He rebounded in his next game (one shutout inning with two Ks) to pick up a win. Bradley remains closer-worthy after posting a 1.96 ERA over his first 23 innings with 21 Ks. Yoshihisa Hirano hasn’t allowed run over his last five innings with five Ks.
Over his last two games, Arodys Vizcaino allowed three runs and four hits over two innings to earn a save, a loss, and a blow save. Vizcaino has two blown saves in nine chances, but his recent struggles may lead to more competition for saves. A.J. Minter underperformed expectations over the first six weeks of the season. He has an attractive ERA (2.65) with 15 Ks in 17 innings, but Minter continues to walk too many batters (12). Over his last 3.1 innings, batters have seven hits and two walks leading to two runs, a win, and a save. Dan Winkler extended his shutout run to 10.1 innings with two hits allowed and 16 Ks. Winkler pitched well enough to be considered for saves in Atlanta, but he has no career saves on his minor league resume.
Los Angeles Angels
Surprisingly, Justin Anderson picked up the last save for the Angels. Over his last four games, Anderson allowed six runs, nine baserunners, and two home runs over four innings. I see no outcome where Justin emerges as the long-term closer for LA in 2018. Upside arm with a big fastball, but Anderson needs more seasoning and better command before becoming a viable option in the 9th inning. Jim Johnson has a 2.70 ERA over his last 13.1 innings, but he allowed 20 baserunners while recording a save and two blown saves. Blake Parker didn’t allow a run over his last 6.1 innings with nine Ks. Cam Bedrosian hasn’t pitched a full inning in five of his last six games. Over his last 12 innings, Cam has a 1.50 ERA and ten Ks. My long-term bet on saves for the Angels remains on Parker while the best options may not be in the roster. If you want to think outside the box, LA may turn to Shohei Ohtani later in the season if they want to limit his innings.
There hasn’t been a lot of excitement in Hector Neris over the last two weeks. He allowed five runs, seven baserunners, and two HRs in his two blown saves in his last four chances. His ERA fell to 5.17, which gives him job loss risk. Hector is 8-for-11 in save chances. Edubray Ramos has a 1.23 ERA over his last 7.1 innings with five walks and nine Ks while picking up a save in his last game on May 13th. Seranthony Dominguez has been perfect over his first four innings in the majors with five Ks. I’m intrigued by the upside of Dominguez in this bullpen.
Sean Doolittle hasn’t allowed a run over his last 10.2 innings with 12 Ks. Doolittle has a win and five saves in his last six games while converting all nine save chances on the year. Ryan Madsen improved his scoreless streak to 6.1 innings with eight Ks. Brandon Kintzler struggled over his last five games (four runs and ten baserunners over 4.1 innings with four games.
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