The Miami Marlins‘ bullpen has been one of the most inconsistent in the MLB in recent years. The bullpen has been responsible for giving up early leads and being unable to close out games like everyone should expect them to.
Miami’s General Manager Kim Ng has already mentioned that adding to the bullpen will be the “top priority this offseason.” With that said, here’s my assessment of the unit and what could be changed.
Newcomers to the Bullpen
Adam Cimber (Trade from Cleveland Indians): Cimber, 30, was brought to Cleveland in a package that included All-Star Brad Hand. With the Indians, Adam Cimber spent two and a half seasons, with his best performance being in 2019, where he earned a 6-3 record with a 4.30 ERA.
Who has been let go
Ryne Stanek (Non-Tendered): Through nine games, Stanek earned a 7.20 ERA. Even though he was one of the 18 Marlins players to catch COVID-19 last season, he didn’t come back like everyone else, and that’s why his career in Miami ended so quickly.
Nick Vincent (No Renewed Contract): It was hard watching Vincent on the mound for the Marlins in 2020. Recording a 4.43 ERA from 22.1 Innings Pitched is something no MLB pitcher should be proud of.
In good position to stay
Brandon Kintzler (Current Free Agent): It seemed like the 36-year-old closer was one of the best, if not the best, highlights in the Marlins bullpen in the 2020 season. With the release of Stanek, Miami and Kim could make a move to retain Kintzler, but free agency is always a mix-up.
Brad Boxberger (Current Free Agent): Boxberger traded 8th inning spots with James Hoyt in 2020 and both respective pitchers did their part very well. Having a 3.00 ERA through 23 games, Boxberger’s best trait was consistency and perseverance. It didn’t matter if the bases were loaded, he had the ability to remain calm and composed, and was able to get Miami out of a lot of bad spots.
Richard Bleier: Acquired in a trade with the Baltimore Orioles back at the end of July, Bleier held the core for Miami’s bullpen in 2020. Notching a 2.16 ERA from the 21 games he pitched in, Bleier’s arsenal of different pitches didn’t get matched in the won playoff series against Chicago. If Kim Ng really wants to improve her bullpen, it starts with Bleier and making him a priority.
Yimi Garcia: If Miami isn’t able to bring Kintzler back to Miami, Garcia is the guy to take control of the closer position. Through nine games and 15 Innings Pitched, Garcia earned a 0.60 ERA, only allowing nine hits. Garcia has already shown up as a closer for Miami, and they may need him to become a permanent addition.
James Hoyt: Acquired in a trade with the Indians, Hoyt also was a massive help to Miami’s bullpen last year. Earning a 1.23 ERA, Hoyt’s 14.2 innings were some of the best Miami saw in 2020.
Jordan Holloway: Although only pitching for 0.1 innings, Holloway should come in as a replacement to any others leaving or dropped down back to the Minors. Holloway was brought back from the 60-Day I.L. at the end of October.
Jeff Brigham: Despite having played one game in 2020, Brigham is another good replacement man for the Marlins. He has really good ball placement and that’s what could help him keep his spot on the roster.
Daniel Castano: Castano is a starter/reliever that did his job well in both positions. Through seven games, Castano earned a 3.03 ERA, but let go 30 hits. In order to remain on the 40-Man Roster, he’s going to have to prove his worth in 2021.
Hot seat (Traded or dropped)
Nick Neidert (Dropped to Minors): Through 8.1 innings Pitched in 2020, Neidert’s spot will come in due time, but it shouldn’t in 2021. Collecting a 5.40 ERA with five earned runs, Neidert’s inability to finish haunted him and may have put a big chip on his shoulder for the rest of his career.
Robert Dugger (Dropped to Minors): In 14 games, Dugger somehow earned a 12.66 ERA, allowing 16 runs. There was no one even close when it came to worst.
Stephen Tarpley (Traded): Just like Dugger, Tarpley was also one of Miami’s least efficient relievers in 2020, as he gave up 12 runs through 11 innings pitched. He built up a decent name for himself while with the Yankees, so the Marlins could possibly use him in some sort of trade package.