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Baseball Daily Dose

Jonathan Loaisiga Takes Over In New York

by George Bissell
Updated On: August 8, 2021, 2:29 pm ET

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Just a few hours after Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman was placed on the 10-day injured list on Saturday afternoon with left elbow inflammation, Jonathan Loaisiga was summoned to protect a slim one-run lead in the ninth inning against the Mariners. The 26-year-old righty responded to the immense challenge by firing a perfect frame, getting Jake Bauers and Jarred Kelenic to ground out before coaxing a game-ending fly out from pinch-hitter Cal Raleigh, to record his fourth save of the season. There’s still a chance either Chad Green or Zack Britton vulture the occasional save chance, but Loaisiga appears poised to fill the void moving forward, and should be rostered in all fantasy formats.

Losing Chapman couldn’t come at a worse time for the Yankees, especially since they’re within five games of the American League East division lead, and less than two games out of the final Wild Card spot; but it doesn’t sound like he’s going to be gone for an extended period. The 33-year-old left-hander has been outstanding in the second half, posting a microscopic 0.90 ERA, 0.90 WHIP and 16/6 K/BB ratio across 10 innings since the All-Star break. He's also converted all seven of his save chances during that span. Fortunately, Chapman isn’t expected to miss too much time. Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters on Saturday afternoon that an MRI revealed no structural damage to his elbow ligament, and that he could be back within 10 days.

Starting Pitchers with an EDGE

Carlos Rodon vs. Cubs

5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 11 K

36% CSW, 19 swinging strikes

Rodon recorded his fifth double-digit strikeout performance of the 2021 campaign on Saturday afternoon against the Cubs. The 28-year-old southpaw has put together a remarkable bounce-back season, posting a microscopic 2.38 ERA, 0.96 WHIP and 160/30 K/BB ratio across 109 2/3 innings (19 starts). He’s lined up to face the Yankees on Thursday in the highly-anticipated “Field of Dreams” game in Iowa.

Josiah Gray vs. Braves

5.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10 K

38% CSW, 20 swinging strikes

Gray showcased exactly why he was the centerpiece of the Max Scherzer and Trea Turner deal at the major-league trade deadline on Saturday night, inducing an eye-popping 20 swinging strikes, including 11 on his curveball alone, over five stellar frames. The 23-year-old right-hander has flashed top-of-the-rotation potential at the big-league level, allowing nine runs (eight earned) on 15 hits with a 25/9 K/BB ratio across 18 innings (four appearances, three starts) this season. He’s lined up to face the Braves on Friday evening in his next start.

Luis Garcia vs. Twins

6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 8 K

41% CSW, 18 swinging strikes

Garcia was virtually un-hittable on Saturday evening, scattering two hits over six stellar frames against the Twins. It was a much-needed bounce-back for the 24-year-old righty after he was lit up for 11 runs (10 earned) over his previous two starts. He’ll carry a sparkling 3.29 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 129/32 K/BB ratio across 106 2/3 innings (21 appearances, 19 starts) into a favorable road tilt against the Angels on Saturday evening.

Austin Gomber vs. Marlins

6.0 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K

37% CSW, 17 swinging strikes

Gomber has blossomed into the Rockies’ ace, allowing three earned runs or fewer in 16 of his 19 starts this season. The 27-year-old lefty delivered one of his best performances of the year, scattering five hits over six scoreless frames on Saturday night against the Rockies. He generated 17 swinging strikes and finished with a robust 37 percent CSW. He’ll take a solid 3.79 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 98/28 K/BB ratio across 97 1/3 innings into a road tilt against the Giants on Friday evening. 

Yu Darvish vs. Diamondbacks

7.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 12 K

39% CSW, 15 swinging strikes

Darvish rebounded from back-to-back dismal outings with a dazzling performance on Saturday evening against the last-place Diamondbacks. The 34-year-old righty matched a season-high with 12 strikeouts, didn’t hand out a free pass, and finished with an elite 39 percent CSW (called strikes plus whiffs). A two-run homer by Christian Walker in the second inning accounted for the only damage against him in this one. He’ll carry a solid 3.43 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 154/29 K/BB ratio across 128 2/3 innings (22 starts) into a rematch against the Diamondbacks on Thursday evening.

Hitters with an EDGE

Brandon Lowe vs. Orioles

2-for-5, 2 R, HR (24), 5 RBI

Lowe served as the Rays’ main offensive catalyst on Saturday night, spearheading a 12-run, 14-hit explosion, tallying two hits, including his 24th round-tripper of the season. The 27-year-old slugger is hitting just .218/.329/.467 across 423 plate appearances, but he’s on pace to reach the 30-homer plateau for the first time in his career.

Jesse Winker vs. Pirates

3-for-5, 2 R, HR (23), 6 RBI

Winker battered the rebuilding Pirates’ pitching staff for three hits, including a three-run homer off righty reliever Chris Stratton in the eighth inning, on Saturday evening. It was his 23rd long ball of the season. The 27-year-old middle-of-the-order run producer is slashing .307/.390/.557 with 74 runs scored, 23 homers, 67 RBI and one stolen base across 459 plate appearances. 

Brandon Belt vs. Brewers

2-for-5, 3 R, 2 HR (14), 3 RBI, BB

The Giants needed three runs in the 10th and four more in the 11th inning to pull out an extra-inning victory over the Brewers on Saturday evening. Belt put the Giants on the board with a solo shot to center field off righty Brandon Woodruff in the fourth inning and also slugged a two-run homer off righty reliever Sal Romano in the 11th inning. It was his first multi-homer effort since August 25, 2020.

Closing Time

Giovanny Gallegos vs. Royals

1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K (2nd save)

Gallegos was handed the ball to protect a three-run lead against the Royals on Saturday night and responded with a flawless frame to net his second save of the season. Given electrifying righty Alex Reyes’s recent control issues, it wouldn’t be shocking to see Gallegos pick up a few more saves over the final few weeks of the regular season.

Kyle Finnegan vs. Braves

1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K (3rd save)

Finnegan came on to protect a one-run lead in the bottom of the ninth inning after the Nationals mounted a furious comeback against the division-rival Braves. The 29-year-old righty hurled a perfect frame to net his third save since taking over as the Nationals’ primary closer last week. He should be rostered in all fantasy formats.

Will Smith vs. Nationals

1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 0 K (3rd blown save)

Smith had a rough outing on Saturday evening, giving up an RBI ground out to Luis Garcia before serving up a go-ahead homer to Riley Adams later in the frame. It was just his third blown save of the season. 

Gregory Soto vs. Cleveland

1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 K (13th save)

Soto was brought on to guard a two-run lead against Cleveland and wound up surrendering a solo homer to Wilson Ramos to open the frame. He also gave up a single to ensuing batter Owen Miller, but he managed to retire Ernie Clement, Myles Straw and Amed Rosario in succession to preserve the victory. The 26-year-old southpaw has converted 13 of 14 save opportunities this season. 

Ian Kennedy vs. Mets

1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K (18th save)

Daniel Bard vs. Marlins 

1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K (18th save)

Kenley Jansen vs. Angels

1.0 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K (23rd save)

Adam Ottavino vs. Blue Jays 

1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K (8th save)

EDGE Priority Pickup

Jonathan Loaisiga, RP, Yankees

With Aroldis Chapman sidelined for at least the next 10 days due to left elbow inflammation, Loaisiga appears poised to take over as the Yankees’ primary closer. The 26-year-old righty picked up a save on Saturday afternoon against the Mariners and should be rostered in all fantasy formats as a temporary saves source.

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Sunday’s Matchup of the Day

Reid Detmers (Angels) vs. Walker Buehler (Dodgers) - 4:10 PM ET

The Freeway Series finale will feature dynamic rookie southpaw Reid Detmers squaring off against hard-throwing Dodgers ace Walker Buehler, who has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 15 consecutive starts since May 17.

 

American League Quick Hits: Chris Sale struck out eight batters and threw 89 pitches (59 strikes) over 4 2/3 scoreless innings on Saturday in a minor-league rehab start with Triple-A Worcester … Tigers signed INF Jonathan Schoop to a two-year, $15 million contract extension. The 29-year-old slugger was set to become a free agent at the conclusion of the current season, but his new deal will keep him in Detroit through the 2023 campaign … Red Sox placed DH J.D. Martinez on the COVID-19 injured list … Taylor Rogers (finger) will not undergo season-ending surgery … Athletics manager Bob Melvin told reporters Saturday that James Kaprielian (shoulder) is likely to start Sunday's series finale against the Rangers … Cleveland recalled INF Andrés Giménez from Triple-A Columbus … Salvador Perez (illness) returned to the Royals' starting lineup for Saturday's game against the Cardinals … Ryan Mountcastle (concussion) was absent from the Orioles' starting lineup on Saturday against the Rays … Bobby Bradley (knee) was held out of Cleveland's starting lineup on Saturday against the Tigers … Robbie Grossman (elbow) returned to the Tigers’ lineup Saturday against Cleveland …Matt Olson went 4-for-5 with two RBI and Yan Gomes and Josh Harrison homered in the Athletics’ blowout victory over the Rangers … Aaron Judge went 2-for-4 with a solo homer in the Yankees’ victory over the Mariners … Jose Abreu and Cesar Hernandez launched solo homers in the White Sox’ one-sided win over the Cubs … Yordan Alvarez slugged his 22nd round-tripper of the season and Kyle Tucker went 3-for-4 with a stolen base, leading the Astros past the Twins … Marcus Semien drilled a walk-off solo homer to lift the Blue Jays to a victory in the front-end of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Red Sox … Alex Verdugo went 3-for-4 with a solo homer to propel the Red Sox to a win over the Blue Jays in the nightcap of Saturday’s twin-billing against the Blue Jays … Eric Haase went 2-for-4 with a stolen base in the Tigers’ win over Cleveland … Kyle Seager blasted a two-run homer and also stole base in the Mariners’ loss to the Yankees … Cedric Mullins clobbered a two-run homer -- his 19th long ball of the season -- in the Orioles’ blowout loss to the Rays … Wilson Ramos went 3-for-4 with a solo homer in Cleveland’s loss to the Tigers … Shane McClanahan posted eight strikeouts and allowed three runs over seven innings in a win over the Orioles … Andrew Heaney recorded nine strikeouts and allowed four runs over six innings in a win over the Mariners … Cole Irvin yielded two runs over seven innings in a win over the Rangers … Tyler Alexander scattered four hits over 5 1/3 frames in a win over Cleveland … Chris Flexen whiffed seven batters and surrendered three runs over five innings in a no-decision against the Yankees … Nick Pivetta fired six scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Blue Jays … Robbie Ray tossed six scoreless frames in a no-decision against the Red Sox … Tanner Houck fanned six batters and allowed one run over 3 2/3 innings in a no-decision against the Blue Jays … Jose Berrios struck out six batters and allowed one run over six innings in a no-decision against the Red Sox … Jaime Barria yielded three runs over six innings in a no-decision against the Dodgers … Eli Morgan allowed two runs over seven frames in a loss to the Tigers … Michael Pineda yielded two runs over six innings in a loss to the Astros … Brad Keller was lit up for five runs over five innings in a loss to the Cardinals … Spenser Watkins was charged with five runs (four earned) over six innings in a loss to the Rays … Drew Anderson was tagged for five runs over two innings in a loss to the Athletics.

National League Quick Hits: Juan Soto (knee) was held out of the Nationals' starting lineup for Saturday's contest against the Braves … Brewers activated OF Christian Yelich from the COVID-19 injured list … Jack Flaherty (oblique) said Saturday that he plans on returning to the Cardinals’ starting rotation next week … Francisco Lindor told reporters Saturday that his rehab is going well, but he doesn't know when he'll return to the Mets' lineup this season … Travis d’Arnaud (thumb) will likely be activated from the 60-day injured list on Tuesday … Tejay Antone (forearm) started a minor-league rehab assignment on Saturday with Triple-A Louisville … Didi Gregorius (elbow) was held out of the Phillies' lineup for Saturday's game against the Mets … Trea Turner hit leadoff and played second base on Saturday in his Dodgers debut against the Angels … Cody Bellinger walloped a solo homer to lead the Dodgers past the Angels … Nick Castellanos and Joey Votto blasted solo homers in the Reds’ lopsided victory over the Pirates … Brad Miller slugged a pair of solo homers to lead the Phillies past the Mets … Kris Bryant went 3-for-4 with an RBI and Buster Posey went 3-for-6 with two RBI, propelling the Giants’ to a win over the Brewers in an extra-inning marathon … Riley Adams drilled a go-ahead two-run homer, lifting the Nationals past the Braves … Connor Joe went 2-for-4 with four RBI to lead the Rockies to a win over the Marlins … Nolan Arenado clubbed a solo homer to lift the Cardinals past the Royals … Manny Machado and Eric Hosmer walloped solo homers in the Padres’ win over the Diamondbacks … Jorge Soler went 2-for-2 with a solo homer and two walks in the Braves’ loss to the Nationals … Michael Conforto, Jonathan Villar and James McCann belted solo homers in the Mets’ loss to the Phillies … Bryan Reynolds went 3-for-4 with a two-run homer and three RBI in the Pirates’ loss to the Reds … Willy Adames belted a game-tying solo homer in the Brewers’ loss to the Giants in extra-innings … Lewis Brinson collected three hits, including a pair of doubles, in the Marlins’ loss to the Rockies … Christian Walker swatted a two-run homer in the Diamondbacks’ loss to the Padres … Brandon Woodruff fanned eight batters and allowed only one run over six innings in a no-decision against the Giants … Charlie Morton struck out seven batters over six scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Nationals … Vladimir Gutierrez struck out six batters and yielded one run over six innings in a win over the Pirates … Ranger Suarez tossed 2 2/3 scoreless frames in a no-decision against the Mets … Kwang-Hyun Kim gave up two runs over four innings in a no-decision against the Royals … Aaron Sanchez allowed one run over two innings in a no-decision against the Brewers … Julio Urias was charged with three runs (two earned) over five innings in a no-decision against the Angels … Taylor Widener notched seven strikeouts and allowed two runs over five innings in a no-decision against the Padres … Adbert Alzolay yielded two runs and struck out seven batters over 6 2/3 innings in a loss to the White Sox … Tylor Megill was rocked for four runs over 4 2/3 innings in a loss to the Phillies … Mitch Keller walked four batters and allowed four runs over five innings in a loss to the Reds … Jesus Luzardo was torched for seven runs over 4 2/3 innings in a loss to the Rockies.