Each weekend, we discuss the saves situations for all 30 teams in the league, with a special emphasis on who is trending up and who is slipping.
This week, Giovanny Gallegos has taken over the closer’s role in St. Louis and won’t look back.
Giovanny Gallegos, St. Louis Cardinals
We have a new closer in St. Louis, and it’s Gio Gallegos. Always considered a talented strikeout artist, he ascends to the role because the Cardinals want to use Alex Reyes in a multi-inning relief role. Reyes had been struggling, and the Cards would like him to start next year, so the move makes sense.
Since August 30, Gallegos has earned five saves, three of which came this week. He allowed four runs in an outing on September 5, but outside of that, he has been pretty reliable all year long. For the season, he has a 3.33 ERA in 63 games, with a fantastic 0.87 WHIP and 82 strikeouts.
Andrew Chafin, Oakland Athletics
Yes, Chafin allowed a go-ahead homer on Saturday, but in a time in which usually reliable guys like Lou Trivino and Sergio Romo have struggled mightily, he has been by far the most consistent bullpen contributor.
Chafin is currently the most (only?) trusted late-inning reliever in Oakland, even though he can’t be considered the clear-cut closer yet. He saved a game on Thursday and another one on August 29, so not too long ago.
For the year, the left-hander has a 1.78 ERA, 57 strikeouts, and a brilliant 0.82 WHIP.
Ian Kennedy, Philadelphia Phillies
Although he has three saves and a 1/11 BB/K ratio in his last seven games, Philadelphia Phillies’ closer Ian Kennedy also has a 6.14 ERA over that span. To be honest, he has been struggling for a while, evidenced by his 6.59 ERA in his last 15 contests.
He had an ugly loss on Thursday against the Rockies, allowing four hits and three runs in 0.2 innings. Simply put, Kennedy is not reliable right now, and could really mess up your ratios at the worst possible time.
Situations to monitor
Chris Stratton converted his fourth save of the season, and David Bednar, who has looked good as the Pirates’ closer, hasn’t pitched in four days. It’s a puzzling situation.
Drew Steckenrider saved Friday’s game. The Mariners don’t appear to have a set ninth-inning guy, and Steckenrider, Paul Sewald, and Diego Castillo are equally likely to get the next chance.
Left-hander Josh Taylor earned the save for Boston on Saturday, and Hansel Robles did so on Wednesday. The bullpen, as of right now, doesn’t have a go-to closer.
- New York Yankees: Aroldis Chapman (first option), Jonathan Loaisiga (injured), Chad Green
- Baltimore Orioles: Committee: Cole Sulser and others
- Tampa Bay Rays: Multi-reliever committee: Andrew Kittredge, JT Chargois, Matt Wisler, and others.
- Toronto Blue Jays: Jordan Romano (first option), Joakim Soria
- Boston Red Sox: Multi-reliever committee: Adam Ottavino, Garrett Whitlock, Garrett Richards, Hansel Robles, Josh Taylor
- Chicago White Sox: Liam Hendriks (secure), Craig Kimbrel
- Minnesota Twins: Alex Colome (first option), Tyler Duffey
- Cleveland: Emmanuel Clase (secure)
- Detroit Tigers: Gregory Soto (secure)
- Kansas City Royals: Scott Barlow (first option), Greg Holland
- Houston Astros: Ryan Pressly (secure), Kendall Graveman
- Oakland Athletics: Andrew Chafin (first option), Sergio Romo, Jake Diekman, Lou Trivino
- Los Angeles Angels: Raisel Iglesias (secure)
- Seattle Mariners: Committee: Diego Castillo (first option), Paul Sewald, Drew Steckenrider
- Texas Rangers: Joe Barlow (first option), Spencer Patton
- Atlanta Braves: Will Smith (secure), Richard Rodriguez
- New York Mets: Edwin Diaz (secure)
- Philadelphia Phillies: Ian Kennedy (first option)
- Washington Nationals: Kyle Finnegan (first option), Tanner Rainey
- Miami Marlins: Dylan Floro (secure), Anthony Bass, Anthony Bender
- Cincinnati Reds: Mychal Givens (first option), Michael Lorenzen.
- St. Louis Cardinals: Giovanny Gallegos (secure)
- Milwaukee Brewers: Josh Hader (secure)
- Chicago Cubs: Rowan Wick (first option), Codi Heuer, Manuel Rodriguez
- Pittsburgh Pirates: David Bednar (first option), Chris Stratton
- Los Angeles Dodgers: Kenley Jansen (secure)
- San Diego Padres: Mark Melancon (secure), Daniel Hudson
- Colorado Rockies: Carlos Estevez (first option)
- San Francisco Giants: Committee between Jake McGee and Tyler Rogers
- Arizona Diamondbacks: Tyler Clippard (first option)