Over his last five games, Brad Boxberger pitched his way out of the closing job in Arizona. He allowed seven runs and nine baserunners over his last 2.1 innings with one K leading to three losses, one save, and one blown save. On the year, Boxberger is 32-to-39 in save conversions. Yoshihisa Hirano picked two saves in three chances over the last week while allowing two runs, four baserunners, and two Ks over 2.1 innings. Hirano has a 1.56 ERA over his last 17.1 innings with 13 Ks.
After spending the last two months on the DL with a shoulder issue, Arodys Vizcaino returned to the Braves over the weekend. He tossed one shutout inning in his first appearance with one K. He may get some chances at saves over the last week of the year. A.J. Minter did struggle over his last eight games (6.75 ERA and 1.75 WHIP over eight innings with eight Ks, three saves, and one blown save. Minter converted 14 of his 16 saves this year.
The Cubs lost Pedro Strop for the remainder of the regular season, which creates a two-week window for saves for another arm. Justin Wilson looks like the from runner over pitching well over his last 11 games (0.93 ERA over 9.2 innings with 11 Ks). Steve Cishek didn’t pitch well over his last ten games (8.10 ERA and 1.50 WHIP) coming into Saturday, but he did convert his save chance. His experience gives him the inside track, but his arm has failure risk in the 9th.
Chicago White Sox
Nate Jones moved quickly into the 9th inning for the White Sox after spending three months on the DL. Over his first two games back in the majors, Jones pitched two shutout innings with no walks, three Ks, and one save. Nate looks like the favorite for saves in the windy city over the last two weeks of the year.
The best arm in Philadelphia over the last month has been Hector Neris. Over his last 11.2 innings, Neris allowed one run over 11.2 innings with three walks and 24 Ks. His success may lead to saves over the last two weeks after Seranthony Dominguez pitched his way out of the 9th inning.