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Stray Saves

Adonis Medina secured an extra-inning save on Sunday in the Mets’ wild victory over the Dodgers. He was also optioned to the minor leagues a couple of days later.

Daniel Hudson picked up a save Wednesday with Craig Kimbrel on the paternity list. Kimbrel is set to return this weekend for their series against the Giants. With that, Hudson should return to his role as Los Angeles’ top setup reliever.

Ian Kennedy picked up a save on Thursday after Mark Melancon pitched the eighth. Arizona didn’t take the lead until the ninth inning, so it’s possible they were just getting Mark Melancon some work in after he had a horrible blown save over the weekend. Melancon is still Arizona’s closer.

Alex Colome picked up his third save of the season on Thursday. Closer Daniel Bard had worked each of the previous two games with heavier workloads than Colome, so Colorado likely did not want to turn to Bard. Colome is clearly his backup closer.

Steve Cishek’s save over the weekend came with both Tanner Rainey and Kyle Finnegan likely unavailable. Each pitched in the previous two games. Rainey looks secure in his role as Washinton’s closer.

Zack Thompson’s MLB debut resulted in a four-inning save. He hasn’t gotten into a game since his debut and figures to be helped out in multi-inning relief.

Jovani Moran snuck in a one-out save on Sunday after Tyler Duffey struggled to close out the Blue Jays. Jhoan Duran and Emilio Pagan are still the two clear top options in Minnesota’s bullpen.

Rafael Montero picked up a one-out save on Sunday after Ryan Pressly was ejected and Phil Maton loaded the bases. Montero has been fantastic this season and is the lead backup option to Pressly.

Committee Considerations

With Miami’s bullpen still in shambles, Don Mattingly turned to Tanner Scott on Thursday to close out their victory over the Nationals. He pitched well and continued to flash his strikeout upside, picking up two in his one inning of work. His ERA for the season remains at 4.43. Miami opted to go to Anthony Bass earlier in the game to work out of some trouble, possibly showing their preference to keep him in a flexible role revolving around leverage rather than as a set closer. Regardless, Miami’s situation is still difficult to read and offers relatively little upside.

Jason Adam was the latest reliever to throw his hat into the closer ring on Thursday, getting the final three outs to finish off a sweep of the Cardinals. Andrew Kittredge’s injury and impending surgery put the bullpen in an interesting spot, especially with J.P. Feyerisien also on the injured list. Colin Poche, Brooks Raley, and Adam himself appear to be the most viable options for saves, but the Rays likely wouldn’t hesitate to use any of their arms in any situation in a game over the course of the season.

Matt Strahm picked up the Red Sox last two saves on Tuesday and Wednesday, although under dubious circumstances. His first save came in extra innings while his second save came after John Schreiber had already gotten the first out of an inning. The Red Sox late inning usage leans towards matchups rather than having a set hierarchy. Without a true closer set in stone Strahm could have utility in deeper leaguers as a part-time closer. John Schreiber is also worth an add in deeper leagues if you want to speculate on the Red Sox bullpen.

Diego Castillo has appeared to right the ship and has seen save opportunities as a result. He earned saves on Monday and Wednesday in Houston after Paul Sewald converted two saves over the weekend against the Rangers. The Mariners prefer to have Sewald face the most threatening part of the batting order, exemplified on Wednesday when they deployed him in the eighth inning to face Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, and Yuli Gurriel. His flexibility is going to open the door for other Mariner relievers to pick up saves, and Diego Castillo looks like he’ll be the primary beneficiary for the time being. According to fantasypros Castillo’s is only rostered in 12% of Yahoo leagues and 3% of ESPN leagues. Both of those figures should increase.

Emerging Relievers

The Mariners’ bullpen has struggled to repeat the strong performance they to in 2021. With that, opportunities have arisen for some arms and rookie Penn Murfee has taken full advantage of his opportunity. Despite not cracking 90 MPH on his average fastball, Murfee has kept batters off-balanced to the tune of a 0.90 ERA. He likely won’t figure into the closer mix for Seattle, but he’s pitched well enough to get high leverage looks.

For those looking to address holds, Eli Morgan, Dennis Santana, and Griffin Jax are some options to ponder.

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