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Arizona Diamondbacks: Predicting the Wild Card Game roster

josephjacquez
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Archie Bradley #25 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning at AT&T Park on September 15, 2017 in San Francisco, California. The Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the San Francisco Giants 3-2. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Archie Bradley #25 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning at AT&T Park on September 15, 2017 in San Francisco, California. The Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the San Francisco Giants 3-2. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images) /
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PHOENIX, AZ – JUNE 25: Relief pitcher Andrew Chafin #40 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the Philadelphia Phillies during the MLB game at Chase Field on June 25, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Phillies 2-1 in 11 innings. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ – JUNE 25: Relief pitcher Andrew Chafin #40 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the Philadelphia Phillies during the MLB game at Chase Field on June 25, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Phillies 2-1 in 11 innings. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

The Bullpen

This is probably where the most questions lie. Do you put one or two starters in the pen? Do you keep all three lefties? Who gets the crack at the closer duties in a one-run game?

I think I have come up with an initial relief core that involves nine pitchers. Here it is!

Emergency Starter: Zack Godley

Long Man: Patrick Corbin

Middle Relief: T.J. McFarland and Jimmie Sherfy

Seventh Inning: David Hernandez

Eighth Inning: Archie Bradley

Closer (?): Fernando Rodney

Lefty specialists: Jorge De La Rosa + Andrew Chafin

I do not think Jake Barrett or J.J. Hoover deserve spots. Silvino Bracho and Braden Shipley are in the same category. I also think you need to have at least two emergency starters. Both Godley and Corbin can also pitch in long relief depending on match ups.

I contemplated giving the seventh inning to Sherfy, but I do not know if I trust a rookie in a playoff game. He has pitched lights out since being called up and has handled pressure extremely well, but I still have my doubts.

Other than a blowup in a recent appearance, Hernandez has pitched well for the D-backs. 10 of his last 12 appearances have been scoreless, and  he owns a 2.63 ERA in his last 42 games since May 30.

T.J. McFarland ability to get ground balls will be key. Andrew Chafin has struggled in the second half, but he does a great job with inherited runners, and he has had success against Charlie Blackmon. That could prove key late in the game.

Jorge De La Rosa leads all N.L. relievers with a 3.1 inherited runners percentage.

You never know what you will get from Fernando Rodney in the ninth. But he has been consistent for most of the season. I have him in the closer’s role, but don’t be surprised if Archie gets the ninth in a one-run game, especially if Bradley pitches a quick eighth.

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