Well, it’s better late than never, so here we go with the summary post for the month of August.
Because the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Orange County, California’s bullpen were so collectively bad, they are the reason why Boston’s Alfredo Aceves isn’t given the marquee this month. Aceves’ three blown saves in August makes him the worst individual reliever in the month, but the Angels had four different relievers blow saves in August, with three of them blowing more than one. For this reason alone, the Angels collective bullpen gets the nod over Aceves.
More stats and analysis after the jump:
As of the end of August 31st, Major League Baseball has seen 432 blown saves occur. In the league race, in the month of August, the National League shaved 12 blown saves off their prior month’s mark, to just 38 blown saves. The American League kept kind of on par, but blowing one more save than they did in July. If you’re keeping score, the final tally was NL 38, AL 37, which technically is yet another win for the AL, but when you factor in the two-team differential, it means that the NL was the superior league in August.
Across the divisions, the NL East showed the most improvement throughout August, shaving ten blown saves off their previous month. A large part of such improvement goes out to the surprising development that neither the Mets or the Marlins blew any saves at all in August. Granted, with two cellar-dwelling teams, it’s safe to bet that neither were ever winning games to be put in save situation to blow, but nary in baseball is there ever the completely winless month.
Speaking of entire teams putting up zeroes in the BS column, along with the Mets and Marlins, the Twins and Orioles also put up zero-blown-save months in August. The interesting dynamic is that the Mets, Marlins and Twins are all very bad teams, but the O’s have scratched back into the division title hunt, mostly in part to their current lockdown bullpen securing as many wins as they can.
In terms of improvement, the aforementioned Mets, Twins, Orioles, and also the Astros were the most improved, with each of them shaving four blown saves off of the prior month.
By virtue of housing the woeful Angels, the AL West has the distinction of being the worst division in baseball through the month, adding four blown saves to their July total.
Along with the Angels, the Brewers and the Diamondbacks each had four different guys blow a save at some point in August. But unlike the Angels, the latter two’s foursome each blew just one game.
August was also a big month for droughts, which helps explain the low BS total for the month as a whole. August 2nd, 18th, 20th, 27th and 29th were all dates in which not a single relief pitcher in all of Major League Baseball coughed up the tying or losing run(s) to anyone. It’s kind of crazy that there were that many dates; the idea of surpassing the 50+ stretch set last year of consecutive days with a blown save seems more and more like a pipe dream now.
And finally, the month of August saw eight total Blown Save, Wins, from guys who sucked enough to blown the lead, but were gritty and had enough heart to stick it out long enough for the offense to earn them “a win.”