Who’s pitching in the Diamondbacks bullpen??

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 25: Tyler Clippard #36 celebrates with Daulton Varsho #12 of the Arizona Diamondbacks after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-2 during the game at PNC Park on August 25, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 25: Tyler Clippard #36 celebrates with Daulton Varsho #12 of the Arizona Diamondbacks after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-2 during the game at PNC Park on August 25, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /

The Diamondbacks Bullpen has been a revolving door this season

There have been so many new faces inside of the Diamondbacks bullpen that it’s hard to keep track of who’s who. Whether it’s been by trade, injury, release, signing, claims, or optioning, almost no one from Opening Day is still in the bullpen.

In fact, only 2 of the Opening Day bullpen/roster are still pitching for the Diamondbacks in the Majors. The Opening Day bullpen consisted of Taylor Clarke, Stefan Crichton, Chris Devenski, Kevin Ginkel, Yoan López, Riley Smith, Joakim Soria, and Alex Young.

Welp, sayonara to Soria (traded to Blue Jays), Lopez (traded to Braves), Young (Claimed off Waivers by Cleveland), Crichton (optioned to Reno), Smith (optioned to Reno), Ginkel (optioned to Reno), and Devenski (Tommy John surgery).

Only Taylor Clarke and former starting pitcher Caleb Smith remain from the opening day roster. There’s been a total of 28 different pitchers to pitch out of the Diamondbacks bullpen this year. TWENTY-EIGHT!

Arizona Diamondbacks

So who’s pitching in the Diamondbacks bullpen currently?

  • Taylor Clarke: Taylor missed a large chunk of the season due to a shoulder injury. He’s since come back and has somehow managed to maintain a grip on a late-inning role for the Dbacks. He’s struggled a lot this season. Torey trusts him for some reason that I’ve yet to figure out. Clarke’s stats this year are 1-1, 41.1 innings, 49 hits, 11 walks, 36 K’s, and 4.57 ERA. He’s given up 4 runs in the last 5 appearances.
  • Tyler Clippard: The current Closer for the Dbacks is in his second tenure with the team. He only came back from a massive shoulder injury a few weeks ago. He had missed the entire season until a few days before the Trade Deadline. He’s been good for the Dbacks and seems to have a solid hold on what little saves will be needed. He’s the leader and veteran of the bullpen as this is his 15th season in the MLB. His stats this year are 1-0, 5 saves, 12 hits, 3 walks, 13 K’s, and a 3.21 ERA in 14 innings.
  • Brett de Geus: Originally acquired off waivers from the Rangers, Brett’s still pitching in the bullpen. He’s had some bad timing with pitches. His FIP is way better than his ERA indicating he’s had some bad luck. However, one can only claim bad luck for so long. He’s a middle reliever that probably needs to start performing or risk getting cut. His combined stats in his rookie year are 3-2, 54 hits, 23 walks, 39 K’s, and a 7.46 ERA in 44.2 innings. His FIP is 4.82.
  • Jake Faria: Jake was signed by the Diamondbacks after being released by the Los Angeles Angels. He’s a former top-100 prospect with the Tampa Bay Rays. He’s been a flexible reliever for the Dbacks by starting games or pitching out of the bullpen. Jake’s a long-relief man. Aso, he’s finished 3 games. Jake has command issues but the talent is there. His stats for the season are 0-0, 33 hits, 11 walks, 28 K’s, and a 5.08 ERA in 28.1 innings. Unfortunately for Faria is the fact he’s been rather unlucky this year. His FIP is a great 3.83. That’s nearly a run and a half lower than his ERA. Hopefully, his fortunes change soon.
  • Joe Mantiply: This is the most he’s pitched in the MLB since debuting in 2016 with the Tigers. It’s the 2nd year with the Dbacks as well. He’s been one of our best relief pitchers this year. He’s also been the best lefty reliever for the team. Torey’s giving Joe more and more high-leverage work. His stats this year are 0-2, 30.1 innings, 36 hits, 15 walks, 27 K’s, and a 4.15 ERA.
  • Matt Peacock: The hero we don’t deserve but love anyways, Matt Peacock has become a fan-favorite rather quickly. The quiet Alabama man has become one of our best bullpen pitchers. He’s able to make starts on a moment’s notice, can give you big innings out of the bullpen, or pitch in high leverage situations. Matt’s Torey’s swiss pocket knife. In his rookie year, he’s started 8 games, finished 12 games, and pitched in 33 overall games. He’s also known for some rather timely hits! His overall stat line for the season is 5-7, 105 hits, 27 walks, 47 K’s. 4.97 ERA and 83.1 innings pitched.
  • Sean Poppen: This pitcher came to the Dbacks after being claimed off waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays. He’s been shuttled up and down from Reno since then. He’s a good middle innings reliever, but you shouldn’t expect a ton from him. He will strikeout guys in bunches but also walk them just as much. His stats for this year across 3 teams are 0-0, 1 save, 12 innings, 17 hits, 6 walks, 12 K’s, and a 5.25 ERA. Don’t be surprised to see him sent back down to Triple-AAA in a couple of days.
  • Noe Ramirez: Noe came to the Dbacks after signing a Minor League free agent contract following his release from the Angels. Noe’s been famous for pitching with the Red Sox and Angels the past few years. This is his first year in the desert.  Noe’s been one of the best pitchers for the Dbacks this year. He’s reliable and does his job. He’s not doing anything fancy but getting outs. That’s exactly what I want. His stats for this year are 0-1, 1 save, 11 hits, 9 walks, 18 K’s, and 3.38 ERA in 18.2 innings with the Dbacks.
  • Caleb Smith: Caleb started the season in the rotation. After one start, he got sent to the bullpen. He dominated while pitching out of the bullpen. He did it enough to where the Snakes gave him another try out of the rotation. He got a longer look at being a starting pitcher but ultimately got sent back to the bullpen. He’s a power lefty who can give the team multiple innings. His fastball and pitching play up out of the bullpen. They are faster, crisper, and more precise. He just has a different intensity. Caleb’s currently battling the MLB to prove that he wasn’t cheating after umpires suspected there was a substance on his glove during a game. More information on that can be found in the link above. His stats for this year in 36 games are 13 starts, 3 games finished, 82 hits, 56 walks, 112 K’s, 5.07 ERA, and 5.01 FIP in 99.1 innings pitched.
  • J.B. Wendelken: Wendelken played with the Oakland Athletics for the past few years. They were rather good too! However, he struggled a bit too much for a team with World Series aspirations. They had to let him go in order to bring up another pitcher. That’s where the Dbacks stepped in. On August 11th, they claimed him off waivers. I am ecstatic about it since he’s a legitimate high-end reliever who’s under contract control until 2025. He’s had a rough go of it to begin his Dbacks tenure but that can be due to a variety of reasons. I’m withholding my judgement on him until closer to the end of the season. His overall stats between Oakland and Arizona are 2-2, 32 hits, 17 walks, 30 K’s, and a 4.45 ERA (4.15 FIP) in 30.1 innings of work.

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The Diamondbacks bullpen has been an issue for as long as I can remember. For whatever reason, we have been unable to have a reliable and consistent bullpen. This is the biggest complaint I can have for Mike Hazen. That’s why I hope that Hazen finally gets some funds/coaching for the bullpen this off-season. That would change the Dbacks potential and win chances by so much. A guy can pray, can’t he?

As always,

May the Force be with You…