Dodgers: Reviewing the Bullpen’s May Performance

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 28: Scott Alexander #75 of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts to a grand slam homerun from Michael Conforto #30 of the New York Mets, to take a 6-2 lead, during the seventh inning at Dodger Stadium on May 28, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 28: Scott Alexander #75 of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts to a grand slam homerun from Michael Conforto #30 of the New York Mets, to take a 6-2 lead, during the seventh inning at Dodger Stadium on May 28, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – MAY 03: Kenley Jansen #74 of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts after defeating the San Diego Padres 4-3 in a game at PETCO Park on May 03, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – MAY 03: Kenley Jansen #74 of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts after defeating the San Diego Padres 4-3 in a game at PETCO Park on May 03, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

The Good

Kenley Jansen was dominant outside of his single blown save in May. That blown save came on a walk-off grand slam by Hunter Renfroe in San Diego. Outside of that one mistake to Renfroe, nothing else was hit hard. Even in that inning, the Padres had to utilize two bunt singles to get on base.

Jansen looked like he was getting his feel back for that nasty cutter. The velocity is still down, but it does not matter if he is getting the ball to cut consistently. That was proven over the course of this month. Renfroe attacked a cutter that didn’t cut and was left in his sweet spot. Other than that pitch, it seemed like Jansen was able to get his cutter to do what he wanted.

This is a very positive sign for the bullpen going forward. It is one thing to have issues with middle relievers and setup men, but when your closer can’t get the job done, you’re in deep trouble. Jansen is slowly but surely gaining that swagger back and if he pitches like he did most of May, the Dodgers will have one less problem to worry about.

Once again Pedro Baez put up a quiet but dominant month. Here’s the thing with Pedro. If he is performing as well as he did in May, you don’t really hear a peep from the fan base. However, if he has one bad outing fans are ready with their pitchforks. He has proven to be the second best reliever on this roster behind Jansen and he deserves more respect than he gets.

Julio Urias was also very good in May. He managed to earn two saves over his five appearances. Roberts liked to use Urias in multiple innings. It seems like he is keeping Urias ready for a starting role just in case someone goes down with an injury or they want a sixth starter at any moment.

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