Did Dave Roberts send message to Yency Almonte about Dodgers' job security?

Almonte's time in the Dodgers bullpen could be coming to an end.
Los Angeles Dodgers v San Diego Padres
Los Angeles Dodgers v San Diego Padres / Denis Poroy/GettyImages

Though the Los Angeles Dodgers' bullpen situation has improved, it still hasn't been inspiring. The infusion of Joe Kelly has been fun, but that's not a surefire fix in the short- or long-term. There are many other problems that have persisted.

One of them has been right-hander Yency Almonte, whom the Dodgers mistakenly relied upon to replicate a very unrealistic 2022 where he put up a 1.02 ERA, 3.17 FIP and 0.79 WHIP with 33 strikeouts in 35.1 innings.

This year, Almonte has a 5.24 ERA, 4.71 FIP and 1.38 WHIP with 46 strikeouts in 46.1 innings, which is much more indicative of his 2019 and 2021 campaigns with the Colorado Rockies. Almonte's career has been the definition of inconsistent, and his play has been emblematic of that mantra this year.

Why? Because he has stretches of looking competent. Then he has stretches of looking like a Triple-A pitcher. But it seems manager Dave Roberts might be close to fed up after Almonte's meltdown against the San Diego Padres on Saturday night.

Almonte was called upon to handle the eighth inning with the Dodgers up 3-1. He gave up a single, struck out a batter, and then walked the bases loaded before he was removed. The Padres then scored seven runs en route to an 8-3 victory. Caleb Ferguson was left to die on the mound as he allowed five hits and a walk in 0.1 innings, during which he let all of the runs in (Almonte was charged with three earned).

Did Dave Roberts send message to Yency Almonte about Dodgers' job security?

It seems Roberts feels like he might have more leeway to send a message to a player like Almonte because of the Dodgers adding Kelly, Lance Lynn and Ryan Yarbrough at the trade deadline. Plus, with guys like Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler and Shelby Miller nearing returns (and possibly Jimmy Nelson and JP Feyereisen), the Dodgers theoretically have options and will need to create roster space.

Alex Vesia is the only reliever with a worse ERA than Almonte. Otherwise, Almonte takes the cake for worst FIP and walk rate. He now has eight outings this year in which he's surrendered multiple earned runs. The silver lining with his game this year is that he's barely surrendering hard contact, but every stat around that (expected batting average, expected ERA/xwOBA, chase rate and walk percentage) negates that positive trend.

Almonte's been saved this year because the Dodgers have dealt with far too many injuries. He also has no options, which has explained why Vesia and Victor González have gotten sent to Triple-A multiple times over him.

It seems like his time is running out, though, if we're to judge anything based on Roberts' comments. Probably should've kept Justin Bruihl and dumped Almonte at the deadline, maybe?