Fantasy Baseball Relief Pitcher Rankings – 4/8/24 Depth Chart

Breakdowns of key bullpen usage from yesterday's slate of games.

Welcome back to the latest edition of our Reliever Ranks series! This will bring you up-to-date bullpen depth charts every morning for the day’s games and makes for an excellent tool for those looking to stream saves or wins. This series runs seven days a week, so check in every morning to get your daily bullpen fix!



Transaction and Schedule Notes



Yesterday’s Performances

BAL 2 – PIT 3

W: Jose Hernandez (1)

L: Yennier Cano (1)

HD: Keegan Akin (1)

  • The Orioles turned to Yennier Cano in the ninth with a one-run lead with Craig Kimbrel having pitched in each of the past two days. He blew the save and was tagged with his first loss of the year. Cano was miscast as the closer last year, so Kimbrel should have a pretty long leash in his current role as long as he gets his velocity back. Cano should once again be a contender for the holds crown.


PHI 2 – WSN 3

HD: Jordan Weems (2), Hunter Harvey (3)

SV: Kyle Finnegan (2)

  • There won’t be many victories in the Nation’s capitol this year, but Kyle Finnegan is likely to be the one most often protecting the lead. We’re still waiting for him to take over at-bats with a new sweeper he displayed in Spring Training. If he can become a pitcher who induces more whiffs and gets his strikeout rate closer to 30%, he could escape the Toby territory of closers. Hunter Harvey should have a chance at some point this year to steal the role, but he squandered it last year, so don’t get your hopes up.


ARI 2 – ATL 5

HD: Joe Jiménez (2), Tyler Matzek (2)

SV: Pierce Johnson (1)

  • Raisel Iglesias earned his first save on Saturday, but he required rest on Sunday after pitching on consecutive days. The Braves turned to Pierce Johnson instead of A.J. Minter against three righties in the middle of the order. Johnson is not taking over the closer role any time soon, but I’m still having trouble gauging what kind of pitcher he is since he returned from a short stint in Colorado. If he could throw more strikes, he could be a legit holds option on a team racking up tons of wins.


TOR 3 – NYY 8

W: Jake Cousins (1)

HD: Nick Burdi (2), Caleb Ferguson (2)

SV: Dennis Santana (1)

  • I have no idea why Dennis Santana is recording saves for the Yankees in 2024, let alone why he’s pitching the eighth inning of a close game versus a division rival. He got the job done in the eighth, and then stuck around for the ninth and the save after the offense tacked on a couple of insurance runs. Clay Holmes likely would’ve pitched if not for the late runs, so his role is not in any jeopardy.


NYM 3 – CIN 1

HD: Jorge López (1), Brooks Raley (3), Adam Ottavino (2)

SV: Edwin Diaz (2)

  • Edwin Diaz appears to be fully recovered from the injury that kept him out for all of 2023. He displayed decreased velocity on Sunday, but it didn’t affect his success. He’s already struck out eight batters in just five innings (44.4% K%) and has allowed just two baserunners. I have a feeling Diaz is going to have a dominant comeback year to cement himself as the CP1 before Félix Bautista returns to challenge him.


CHW 3 – KCR 5

W: John Schreiber (1)

L: Deivi García (2)

HD: Steven Wilson (1), Will Smith (2)

SV: James McArthur (2)

  • James McArthur seems to be asserting himself as the closer in Kansas City early on. With Will Smith struggling, McArthur has recorded two of the last three saves. He’s already allowed four runs this year, but don’t forget how good he was down the stretch last year. In his final 16.1 IP to close out the year, McArthur pitched to a perfect ERA with 19 strikeouts against no walks. Absolutely dominant stuff. I think the role is his to lose.


TBR 3 – COL 2

HD: Garrett Cleavinger (1), Phil Maton (2)

SV: Shawn Armstrong (1)

  • After using Pete Fairbanks in basically every save opportunity he was available for last year, the Rays have gone elsewhere in each of the past two games. Fairbanks melted down and lost his control on Friday, blowing a save. Since then, Colin Poche closed out Saturday’s game and Shawn Armstrong locked down the final two frames of Sunday’s game. I don’t think this is the end for Fairbanks, I think they’re just taking it easy on him early in the season to preserve his oft-injured arm.


SDP 2 – SFG 3

W: Ryan Walker (1)

L: Jhony Brito (2)

HD: Stephen Kolek (2), Yuki Matsui (2)

SV: Camilo Doval (1)

  • Setting up the save did not come easy to Jhony Brito. The starter turned reliever has struggled out of the gates and blew the save via two unearned runs. Camilo Doval capitalized on the mistake, notching his first save of the year. Yuki Matsui has found a lot of success this year but it has not been backed up by typical strikeout numbers. In 6.1 IP, Matsui sports a 1.42 ERA, however, he’s struck out just two of the 25 batters he’s faced (8% K%). He won’t survive for long with such a reliance on balls in play, so we’ll need some more swinging strikes to fully buy into Matsui’s successful first-year transition.


HOU 3 – TEX 1

HD: Rafael Montero (1), Ryan Pressly (1)

SV: Josh Hader (1)

  • Josh Hader has struggled to begin his Astros tenure but was able to work around a run to record his first save in his new uniform. Ryan Pressly bounced back from a terrible outing in his last appearance and the mighty Astros arm barn trio of Hader, Pressly, and Bryan Abreu has looked mortal this year. Those three have combined for a 10.32 ERA across their first 11.1 IP. With less depth in the Houston bullpen compared to years past, it will be important for the late-inning crew to get their act together.



Bullpen Depth Charts


Also, if you’re looking for a detailed list or ranking of RPs, check out Rick Graham’s weekly pieces:

The Hold Up: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

Closing Time: Ranking the Top 30 Closers

Top 100 Relievers for Save+Hold Leagues



Photo by Zac BonDurant/Icon Sportswire

Design by Jackson Wallace

Jake Crumpler

A Bay Area sports fan and lover of baseball, Jake is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz with a B.A. in English Literature. He currently writes fantasy articles for Pitcher List, is the lead baseball writer at The Athletes Hub, and does playing time analysis at BaseballHQ. Some consider his knowledge of the sport to be encyclopedic.

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