Welcome to Relief Pitcher Week, all week long here at Fake Teams!
1. Last year 166 MLB players had a registered save, this year over 200 players will have one
Justification- More and more rotations, plus teams increasingly dropping players and picking up new ones mid-season, plus injuries tells me we will continue to see more pitching changes mid-game and mid-season.
2. San Diego is in the top-10 in saves this season
Justification: What if I told you they were in the top-10 two seasons ago (granted, with Brad Hand). They have Machado and I am bullish on them having a good season and despite not having an elite closer per se, they have Kirby Yates. They also have some decent defensive players and they have a group of bats who can keep them alive.
3. Cody Allen has a career-high number of saves (35+)
Justification: He faltered a bit last season, but everything is looking positive thus far and he is proving why he deserves the Angels closing spot. I’m not sold on the competition behind him in Ty Buttrey and Justin Anderson, and I think he rebounds to 2015-2018 levels which has an ERA in low 3’s, a WHIP around 1.10, and a K/9 of 12+.
4. Shane Greene finishes outside the top-25 in saves
Justification: He was 8th last year while also holding a 5.12 ERA, a WHIP of 1.374, and almost three walks per nine innings. Add to this that I am possibly less optimistic about Detroit this year than I was last year.
Shane Greene believes he hit a wall last season -- mentally and physically, so he has been easing his way through the early part of spring, which was evident with his 90-91 fastball velo. Still in build-up mode.— Chris McCosky (@cmccosky) February 24, 2019
5. The Brewers have three closers among the top-40 in MLB.
Justification: Jeremy Jeffress, Josh Hader and Cory Knebel seem to be in a committee and I think the Brewers will continue their success this season.