Pena allowed one hit and had zero strikeouts and zero walks during a scoreless ninth inning to record the save Wednesday against the Padres. The 30-year-old entered after Mike Mayers gave up a leadoff single and surrendered a single to the first batter he faced, but he retired the next three hitters with little fanfare. Pena has five holds and has converted two of five save chances with a 3.71 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 29:6 K:BB across 26.2 innings.
Pena (3-0) was tagged with a blown save but managed to pick up the win in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader against the Astros. He pitched one inning and gave up three runs on four hits while striking out one. Pena successfully converted his first save of the season Thursday and was called upon again with the Angels up by a run in the seventh and final frame of Game 1 on Saturday. The right-hander quickly gave up the lead after Myles Straw doubled and Michael Brantley singled him home, then allowed Houston to pull ahead on a two-out single by Martin Maldonado. However, the Angels were able to plate three runs of their own in the bottom of the frame to grab a comeback victory and hand Pena a fortunate win. Ty Buttrey was effective in closing out a one-run win in Game 2 of the twin bill, so it may be sensible to see who gets the next save opportunity before making an assumption about which of the two relievers will function as the Angels' primary closer moving forward.
Pena earned the save against San Diego on Thursday, pitching one perfect inning and registering one strikeout. Pena has been perhaps the most effective Angels reliever this season, and he was rewarded with a save opportunity in a two-run game. The right-hander proved up to the challenge, needing only nine pitches (six strikes) to retired the Padres in order. It is unclear if regular closer Ty Buttrey was unavailable due to his recent usage -- he pitched three of the previous four days and took the loss while giving up three runs and throwing 15 pitches Wednesday -- but there is certainly a chance that Pena will receive more save opportunities moving forward. In 19.1 innings this season, he has notched a 1.86 ERA, 0.93 WHIP and 23:4 K:BB.
Pena was tagged with a blown save Saturday against the Dodgers. He allowed one run on three hits while fanning one in one inning. Pena allowed three hits, including a solo home run to Mookie Betts, in the seventh inning. He has now allowed runs in three of his last five appearances, including each of the last two.
Pena (1-0) earned the win Monday against the Athletics by tossing a scoreless inning. Pena pitched the eighth inning, replacing Kenyan Middleton, and got the job done easily, inducing two groundouts and one lineout to retire the side on just 12 pitches (six strikes). Pena has been reliable out of the bullpen for the Angels so far, giving up just one earned run in 8.1 innings while notching two holds and posting a 9:1 K:BB.
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