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, David Bednar is back from his oblique injury and should regain his hold of the closer role in Pittsburgh, while Dillon Tate wants to get more saves for the Orioles
David Bednar, Pittsburgh Pirates
After the Pirates traded Richard Rodriguez to the Atlanta Braves, right-hander David Bednar received most of the ninth-inning opportunities. He was mostly successful on the role, but recently went down with a right oblique strain, in September 11 to be exact.
His season was in jeopardy, but as it turns out, the strain was mild and he was activated from the injured list on Sunday. He now figures to return to his closer role and send Chris Stratton, who wasn’t bad but lacks Bednar’s upside, to setup duties.
Bednar has three saves on the season, with a very good 2.18 ERA and a 0.94 WHIP. He has logged 57 2/3 innings this year with 73 strikeouts.
Dillon Tate, Baltimore Orioles
The Baltimore Orioles haven’t had a set closer, even though Cole Sulser usually gets the majority of the chances. That could change over the final week, however, as young righty Dillon Tate continues to force his way into the ninth-inning mix.
On Saturday, he allowed a run, but achieved his third save of the season against the Texas Rangers. He was working on a six-game scoreless streak, so he has been much improved recently, and could earn more opportunities down the stretch.
For the year, Tate has a 4.59 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP in 60 games. If you need a cheap save or two in the last week, Tate is a good roll of the dice.
Mychal Givens, Cincinnati Reds
Mychal Givens is not a bad reliever at all, but in an ideal bullpen, he should be a setup man rather than a closer. In any case, he made himself no favors by allowing three runs in 0.2 innings and blowing a save on Friday.
He hadn’t conceded runs in a while, but he wasn’t at his best as evidenced by his 5/4 BB/K ratio in his last five appearances. The fact that the Reds have another talented pitcher like Michael Lorenzen competing with Givens for saves makes us wonder if the former Oriole and Rockie will be used as the closer in the final week.
Carlos Estevez, Colorado Rockies
Speaking of Rockies, Carlos Estevez had taken the closer role from Daniel Bard recently. However, he isn’t looking very sharp himself, and Bard has been improving. There is a chance Colorado returns the latter to ninth-inning duties for the final week.
Estevez blew a save on Thursday and has a mediocre 1.48 WHIP for the season. He has allowed 66 hits in 58 frames and doesn’t look like a long-term fit in the closer role, for the Rockies or any team.
Situations to monitor:
The Mariners have Drew Steckenrider, Diego Castillo, and other good relievers, but it was Paul Sewald the one who was called upon to save Monday, Thursday, and Friday’s games.
Tyler Clippard remains the favorite for saves, but the D-Backs gave J.B. Wendelken a chance on Thursday and he converted.
- New York Yankees: Aroldis Chapman (secure)
- Baltimore Orioles: Committee: Cole Sulser, Dillon Tate, and others
- Tampa Bay Rays: Multi-reliever committee: Andrew Kittredge (first option), JT Chargois, Matt Wisler, and others.
- Toronto Blue Jays: Jordan Romano (first option)
- 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: Committee between Michael Fulmer and Gregory Soto
- Kansas City Royals: Scott Barlow (first option), Greg Holland
- Houston Astros: Ryan Pressly (secure), Kendall Graveman
- Oakland Athletics: Committee between Andrew Chafin (first option) and Sergio Romo
- Los Angeles Angels: Raisel Iglesias (secure)
- Seattle Mariners: Committee: Paul Sewald (first option), Diego Castillo, 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: Committee between Mychal Givens and 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), Daniel Bard
- San Francisco Giants: Committee between Jake McGee (injured) and Tyler Rogers
- Arizona Diamondbacks: Tyler Clippard (first option), J.B. Wendelken