Nick Vincent, an 18th-round pick in 2008, has established himself as a fortifying presence at the back end of the bullpen since joining Seattle. He finished second in the majors in holds last season with 29, giving him a total of 46 holds since the start of 2016. The right-hander averages under 90 mph with his fastball, but the pitch has somehow been among the elite fastballs in the game in terms of generating whiffs. His swinging-strike rate fell more than three percentage points overall last season (to 10.1 percent), going hand-in-hand with a major dip in strikeout percentage, but Vincent made up for it with fewer walks (1.8 BB/9) and homers allowed (0.42 HR/9). Vincent's heavy flyball skew (47.9 percent in each of the last two seasons) dings him in terms of future closer potential, but Vincent should be entrusted with important innings again in 2018.
Vincent agreed to a one-year deal with the Mariners on Friday, avoiding arbitration. Vincent compiled a 3.20 ERA and 1.16 WHIP over 64.2 innings of relief during his second season with Seattle in 2017. The right-hander saw a decent-sized drop in his strikeout rate, going from 9.7 K/9 in 2016 to just 7.0 last year. Regardless, he cut down on his walk rate (1.8 BB/9) and home runs allowed (0.42 HR/9) and should be deployed in high-leverage situations throughout the 2018 campaign.
Vincent (3-3) took the loss in Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Rangers, allowing two earned runs on three hits over an inning. He also recorded a strikeout. Despite throwing 14 of 15 pitches for strikes, Vincent allowed a sacrifice fly to Shin-Soo Choo and RBI single to Elvis Andrus, blowing the 1-1 tie he'd been asked to preserve. Vincent has endured a rough September after a stellar season overall, as he's allowed six earned runs over the 2.2 innings encompassing his last three appearances and now has a 10.80 ERA overall across his eight outings during the month. However, as per Josh Horton of MLB.com, manager Scott Servais plans to stick with Vincent as his top setup option behind closer Edwin Diaz for the balance of the regular season.
Vincent fired 1.1 scoreless innings in Wednesday's 8-7 loss to the Orioles, recording a pair of strikeouts. Vincent was locked in, needing only 11 pitches, 10 of which he threw for strikes, to get four outs. The 31-year-old has generated scoreless efforts in seven of his last eight appearances, lowering his ERA to 1.93 and recording four holds during that span.
Vincent notched his 24th hold in Monday's 6-5 win over the Braves, firing 1.1 scoreless innings. Vincent has thrilled fantasy owners this month with seven holds in eight appearances. He's generated scoreless efforts in all seven of those outings as well and has his ERA down to a sparkling 1.88 following Monday's outing.
Vincent logged his 21st hold in Tuesday's 3-1 win over the Orioles, firing a scoreless two-thirds of an inning. Vincent needed only three pitches to get two outs to close out the eighth, serving as an effective bridge to closer Edwin Diaz. The 31-year-old has notched four holds in five August appearances, leading to a new career high in that category. After a strong first half, he's been even better post-All-Star break, generating a 1.98 ERA and a .208 BAA over 13.2 innings.