Don't tell me you cannot compare bullpens in the National League to the American. Sure, there is the the DH in the AL, and there is that virtually-automatic out with the pitcher in the NL, so in theory it should be harder for the AL and the NL would dominate the bullpen rankings. Not so fast.
Half of the top 10 bullpens by ERA in the entire major leagues are from the AL.
That's right. AL pens have the second (Twins), fifth (Tampa Bay), sixth (Rangers), eighth (Yankees) and tenth (White Sox) BEST earned run averages in all of baseball and they are all playoff-contending teams.
The Boston Red Sox rank 20 out of 30 teams in the majors with a bullpen ERA of 4.36. Yup, they are down with the Mariners, Indians, Orioles, Angels and Royals--not to mention all of the worst teams in the NL like the Pirates, Astros, Brewers, and Diamondbacks.
If there is one thing that is KILLING me this year it's the total lack of getting new, effective pitching in that bullpen. Sure, August waivers are not done yet, but in the meantime the hopes of catching the Rays for the Wild Card spot keep fading--slowly--like a deadly bacteria eating at the core of my being.
Dice K keeps the offense in the game yesterday but is replaced by Manny Delcarmen who serves up a fat, first-pitch meatball to Michael Young for the 3-run shot to left center. Ugh. As if it wasn't enough to have to watch Ellsbury go back on the DL for the third freakin' time on Friday on a play at first base!
I'm not even really talking about Bard or Papelbon here (I'm willing to ignore the Toronto meltdown right now because the flukes will happen). I know they have the talent to get outs. It's the rest of these guys that are killing me. What is it going to take for Theo to make a freaking move with this pen? If run prevention is so damn important, how can you begin to compete with all the playoff contending teams in the AL without some legitimate 6th and 7th inning help?
Out of the 14 teams in the AL, the Red Sox rank 9th... Ugh. It's unreal. It's not easy catching the pitching of this division, I get it. But let's be clear, management is not recognizing its problem with its employees. Take action during the season...
I didn't want to pick on the Mets, but hey, it's at least something positive coming out of Flushing. They rank eleventh with an ERA of 3.77. Omar Minaya is better than Theo with his bullpen signings and picks.
Now that stings.