Fantasy Baseball Relief Pitcher Rankings – 7/22/23 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


  • Friday’s slate featured a full 15 games, but Mets-Red Sox was suspended in the 4th due to rain. They’ll resume play at 2:10 PM today before their normally-scheduled 7:10 PM matchup.
  • The Blue Jays acquired LHP Génesis Cabrera from the St. Louis Cardinals yesterday, sending a minor league catcher back in return. Cabrera hasn’t exactly been stellar in 2023, allowing 18 runs in 32 innings while striking out 38. He’s unlikely to see any high-leverage work amid a Toronto bullpen that’s been among the league’s best with a 3.67 ERA. The Jays DFA’d Trent Thornton in a corresponding move.
  • The Diamondbacks activated Andrew Chafin from the paternity list. Chafin was the team’s everyday closer earlier in the year but hasn’t recorded a save since May 29th, losing share to Miguel Castro and Scott McGough. However, as both have scuffled in recent appearances, this bullpen remains in flux.


Yesterday’s Performances

TOR 2 – SEA 3

HD: Trevor Richards (6), Eric Swanson (24)

  • Jordan Romano took his fifth loss of the year, surrendering a walk-off single to former teammate Teoscar Hernández. Romano also walked two in the inning, although one was intentional. There are some concerning notes here. His fastball velocity was down 1.2 ticks – albeit only across four thrown – and he’s recorded a single strikeout in his last three innings pitched dating back to before the All-Star game. He didn’t even register a whiff over 12 pitches against the M’s. You’re obviously not dropping a name like Romano after a loss due to a walk-sac bunt-intentional walk-sac fly-single, but this situation is worth monitoring.
  • Paul Sewald got the win after pitching a clean top of the 9th with one walk and one strikeout. Sewald has been lights-out in July, picking up five saves (and this win) over eight innings with 16 strikeouts.


KC 4 – NYY 5

HD: Wandy Peralta (13), Michael King (4), Tommy Kahnle (6)
SV: Clay Holmes (12)

  • Clay Holmes picked up his 12th save of the season, allowing a hit in an otherwise uneventful inning. Kahnle gave up a solo home run in the 8th, while Peralta and King each pitched only two-thirds of an inning. After being as unpredictable as any pen in Majors throughout the summer, the Yankees’ closer muddle may be finally sorting itself out – with Holmes on top. He’s given up only two earned runs in his last 15 innings while striking out 17. While wins haven’t come particularly often for the Yankees of late, Holmes has earned the last two saves for the team (a week apart). Former co-closer King has pitched poorly lately as well. If the team can start stringing some wins together, Holmes could quickly become a valuable fantasy closer down the stretch.
  • Nothing of note on the Royals side – Taylor Clarke and Jonathon Heasley pitched eight outs between them without allowing a baserunner.


STL 3 – CHC 4

HD: Julian Merryweather (6), Michael Fulmer (8), Mark Leiter Jr. (15)
SV: Adbert Alzolay (8)

  • Alzolay recorded his eighth save of the year against the Cardinals, pitching the ninth with no baserunners or strikeouts. He’s cemented himself as the Cubs’ closer over the course of the month, locking down four saves in five opportunities, while no other reliever on the club has more than one SV. However, he has yet to excel in the role; in July, he’s pitched to a 5.63 ERA while allowing a .333 BAA. The Cubs are playing decent baseball – their +34 run differential is the best in the NL Central, despite being 7.5 games back – so I wouldn’t be surprised to see consistent save opportunities landing in Alzolay’s lap over the next two months.


SD 5 – DET 4

HD: Nick Martinez (13), Robert Suarez (1)
SV: Josh Hader (24)

  • Hader notched his 24th save of the season, striking out one without allowing a baserunner against the Tigers. Hader’s been busy of late, making eight appearances this month (not including the ASG) without allowing an earned run. Unless GM AJ Preller pulls some crazy tricks out of his sleeve, I think Hader, who will be a free agent after this season, is set to be one of the top targets of the trade deadlines. The Rangers should be one of the more likely landing places and Hader’s fantasy stock will only go up with the increased save chances on the more winning club.
  • Robert Suarez made his first appearance of the season in this one as well, getting three ground ball outs on 11 pitches. Suarez was one of the Padres’ best arms last season but was shut down in Spring Training with elbow inflammation. Should Hader get dealt, Suarez will be in the mix for saves down the stretch.
  • Chasen Shreve, Tyler Holten, Brandon White, and Beau Brieske combined for four scoreless innings.


 Best of the Rest


  • It was a good day for closers, as Alexis Díaz, Pete Fairbanks, Carlos Estévez, Ryan Pressly, and Emmanuel Clase all recorded saves.
    • Note: Pressly has now thrown three days in a row – look for Hector Neris or Bryan Abreu to receive a save opportunity tonight.
  • Shintaro Fujinami made his first appearance with the Orioles, pitching an inning while allowing a run and striking out one vs. the Rays. He’s not going to be fantasy relevant any time soon, but the O’s may be adjusting his pitch mix – this was his first appearance all season throwing his splitter 50% or more.
  • Kirby Yates recorded his second save of the season for the Braves as Raisel Iglesias threw 22 pitches en route to his 17th save yesterday.

Bullpen Depth Charts

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

Ethan McCollister

Diehard Red Sox fan. Vermonter in Philly. Harvard alum. Cat dad. In Chaim we trust...but I miss Mookie.

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