Melancon recorded two outs in the ninth inning but allowed three hits and an earned run prior to being pulled Sunday against the Diamondbacks. Melancon was called upon to begin the ninth inning with the Giants up 9-5. He retired the first two batters without incident but then surrendered three consecutive singles, the last of which drove in a run and ended his outing. While Sam Dyson quickly lost hold of the closer role, this outing won't give manager Bruce Bochy any confidence that Melancon should be trusted in the ninth inning. Will Smith has recorded the Giants' last two saves, but Tony Watson could also earn some opportunities going forward. This might remain a committee, though, even with those two new leaders.
Melancon allowed a hit and struck out one to earn his first save of the season Thursday against the Padres. Melancon earned his first save since June 20, 2017 after replacing Madison Bumgarner to begin the ninth inning. It's now unclear who the Giants' primary closer will be as Sam Dyson -- the named closer when Hunter Strickland (hand) went to the disabled list-- was likely unavailable for Thursday's game after pitching in three consecutive games. Given his contract and prior experience as an elite closer, signs point to Melancon getting more opportunities going forward. However, he'll have to prove his durability as he has yet to pitch in consecutive games this season.
Melancon issued a walk over a scoreless inning while picking up his fourth hold in Tuesday's 6-3 victory over the Marlins. Manager Bruce Bochy said that Sam Dyson and Tony Watson would be the primary options to close out games following Hunter Strickland's (hand) placement on the DL, and he stuck to his word by giving Dyson the save while using Melancon in the seventh inning. The former closer has yet to pitch in back-to-back games following his return from an elbow injury earlier this month, which is probably why he wasn't considered as a replacement closing option. Strickland is expected to be sidelined for 6-to-8 weeks, so there is plenty of time for this situation to shake itself out. That said, it appears that Melancon will continue to be used in a limited role in middle relief for the time being.
Melancon (elbow) was activated from the 60-day disabled list Friday, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. As expected, Melancon returned from the disabled list Friday after successfully completing his minor-league rehab assignment. He'll need to pitch well in low-leverage situations before manager Bruce Bochy can even think about using him in the ninth inning once again. In a corresponding move, Jose Valdez was designated for assignment.
Melancon (elbow) is scheduled to make his third rehab appearance for Triple-A Sacramento on Tuesday, Kerry Crowley of The San Jose Mercury News reports. Melancon went a week between his first two rehab appearances, with his most recent one coming Saturday. The fact that Tuesday's outing will come on two days' rest suggests Melancon is inching closer to an activation from the 60-day disabled list, but the Giants have yet to reveal an exact target date for the righty's reinstatement. Giants manager Bruce Bochy has already indicated that Melancon will settle for lower-leverage work upon rejoining the San Francisco bullpen, so he'll likely need to perform well for an extended period before posing a serious threat to unseat Hunter Strickland as closer.