BEST OF THE BEST
Deciphering latest debate around Astros bullpen conundrum, remaining options
A debate was sparked this week when Dusty Baker opted to use Kendall Graveman to relieve Justin Verlander in the seventh inning against the Red Sox when the score was 3-0.
Ryne Stanek and Rafael Montero were used in the 8th and 9th innings, and by then the score had jumped to 7-0 in the 8th, and 7-1 in the 9th.
ESPN Houston's Jeremy Branham believes Dusty Baker trusts Rafael Montero over Kendall Graveman based on Montero getting the 9th inning to close out the game.
We're of the opinion that Dusty used Graveman in the 7th because the score was much closer, and the top of the Red Sox lineup was coming up that inning. We also suspect that the Astros had to trade for Graveman due to Montero having such a disastrous season. And Baker must have approved the trade, having managed Graveman in 2021.
Knowing exactly how Dusty Baker views his bullpen is a tricky proposition. Which made us wonder, what is the pecking order for Dusty?
When Phil Maton returns, we think this is what the order will be: Ryan Pressly, Bryan Abreu, Hector Neris, Graveman, Maton, Montero, and Stanek.
Be sure to watch the video above for the full conversation.
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