MLB DG: The Value of Relievers

The game has changed, and nowhere is this change more obvious than when it comes to the value of starting pitching... and relief pitching. With teams more and more willing to turn innings over to the bullpen, we might need to reassess how we view relievers, and not just closers.

As I wrote in Will My Arm Fly Off, a must read in relation to this article, starting pitchers simply don’t record the number of frames that they used to, and it’s not close. With starting pitchers not going as deep into games as they used to, there’s an opening for more and more innings to be tossed by those bullpen arms. Just take a look at some of the offseason signings in the bullpen with folks like Steve Cishek (2-years, $13 million), Tommy Hunter (2-18), Brandon Kintzler (2-10), Jake McGee (3-27), Pat Neshek (2-16.25), Yusmiero Petit (2-10), Bryan Shaw (3-27) and Anthony Swarzak (2-14) getting paid, you don’t have to be a closer to rack up big dollars in free agency.

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