Kimbrel worked around two hits to pitch a scoreless ninth inning and record the save in Saturday's win over the Reds. He struck out two.
Kimbrel had a rocky start to the bottom of the ninth, allowing consecutive singles to put runners on the corners, but the veteran reliever then struck out two hitters before ending the game on a Nick Castellanos groundout. Kimbrel has been excellent so far, as he now has five saves in as many chances to go along with a perfect 0.00 ERA. He should have a fairly firm grip on the closer role moving forward.
Kimbrel, who pitched a clean ninth inning with a strikeout in Thursday's 10-inning win over the Mets, has not allowed a run this season through eight appearances (9.0 innings pitched).
It's been exactly the start Kimbrel and fantasy managers hoped for after the veteran struggled the last two seasons in Chicago. Kimbrel's fastball velocity is basically the same in 2021 as it was in 2020 (96.7 vs. 96.9 mph), but his BB/9 is down and he's also had better luck when he does allow contact. Last year, batters had a BABIP of .333 against the righty, and that figure has dropped to .071 so far this season. That number should increase some, but Kimbrel misses enough bats that he should continue to be successful as long as he keeps limiting free passes.
Kimbrel worked around a hit and two walks to pitch a scoreless ninth inning and secure the save in Tuesday's 3-1 win over the Mets.
Kimbrel made things interesting, as he loaded the bases with just one out, but the veteran reliever then struck out Brandon Nimmo and induced a Francisco Lindor groundout to end the game. Kimbrel now has four saves this season and has yet to allow a run. He should have a pretty firm hold on the closer's role due to his strong start, but he'll need the 7-9 Cubs to start scoring more runs if he wants to see a significant uptick in save opportunities.
Kimbrel worked around two walks to pitch a scoreless inning in Sunday's 13-4 loss to Atlanta. He struck out one.
Kimbrel hadn't pitched in five days, so the Cubs brought him in for the ninth inning despite the nine-run deficit. The veteran reliever was able to keep Atlanta off the board in the low-leverage appearance, running his scoreless inning streak to seven to start the season. Chicago is just 6-9 through 15 games, but Kimbrel's performance coming off of disappointing 2019 and 2020 campaigns has been a bright spot so far.
Kimbrel pitched 1.1 scoreless innings to record the save in Tuesday's 3-2 win over the Brewers. He walked one and struck out one.
It's been smooth sailing so far for Kimbrel, who has started the season with six scoreless innings, 10 strikeouts and three saves across five appearances. If the veteran reliever can keep this up, he'll be an invaluable fantasy asset, particularly considering his low cost of acquisition in this spring's drafts. He's coming off a pair of rough seasons, but Kimbrel turned things around down the stretch last year, and it certainly looks like he's carrying that success forward.
Kimbrel pitched 1.2 scoreless innings with three strikeouts to secure the save in Thursday's 4-2 win over the Pirates.
Kimbrel has yet to allow a baserunner in four appearances (4.2 innings) this season, and he has nine strikeouts and two saves as well. It's an encouraging start for the veteran reliever following two down seasons in Chicago, and he'll be a valuable fantasy asset as long as he's pitching well and closing out games for the Cubs.
Kimbrel pitched a scoreless inning with a strikeout in Wednesday's 4-2, extra-inning loss to the Brewers.
Kimbrel pitched a clean ninth inning in a 1-1 game, but the Cubs allowed three runs in the 10th inning to take the loss. The veteran reliever has yet to allow a hit or a walk across three innings, and he's struck out six. It's too early to definitively say that Kimbrel is back to his old self after struggling in 2019 and 2020, but it's certainly encouraging to see him get off to a good start.
Kimbrel recorded his first save of the season, striking out two in a perfect ninth inning Sunday against the Pirates.
Kimbrel entered in the ninth inning for his first save opportunity of the year and retired all three batters he faced. The Cubs have Kimbrel set up to receive the majority of save situations this season. The veteran reliever was shaky in 2020 and will have to close games more consistently, as he did Sunday, in order to keep his role.
Kimbrel pitched a scoreless ninth inning with two strikeouts to record the save in Sunday's win over the Pirates.
Kimbrel picked up his first save of 2021 and recorded his second consecutive scoreless outing to begin the season. It's a good start for the veteran reliever, who posted a 5.28 ERA last year and a 6.53 ERA in 2019. Fantasy managers will want to see Kimbrel string together a few more good appearances to really feel confident, but he's got fantasy value as long as he has the closer role in Chicago and is pitching well.
Kimbrel struck out the side in a perfect ninth inning during Saturday's 5-1 win over the Pirates.
Working in a non-save situation, Kimbrel overpowered the Bucs on 16 pitches (12 strikes). It was an excellent start to the campaign for the veteran closer, who's looking to erase memories of the 6.00 ERA he posted over the last two seasons for the Cubs.
Kimbrel hit 98 mph with his fastball in his most recent Cactus League outing Saturday, Maddie Lee of NBC Sports Chicago reports.
Kimbrel said he was pleasantly surprised by the high number on the radar gun, and he retired his three batters in order with two strikeouts. "My ball had some zip on it, had a little more life than it's had so far this spring training," Kimbrel said. "When you can be nice and smooth and easy and try not to do too much, everything works out." The veteran reliever averaged 98.3 mph on his fastball back in 2017, but he's been below 97 mph in his two seasons with the Cubs. He has a 6.00 ERA since coming to Chicago, so the diminished velocity has seemingly had a direct impact on his effectiveness. If Kimbrel has a little more zip in 2021, he could turn things around, but fantasy managers will want to see him string together a handful of good outings before getting too excited.
Kimbrel allowed four runs on two hits and two walks while retiring just two batters in Friday's Cactus League game against the Brewers.
It's been an awful start to the spring for Kimbrel, who has a 30.38 ERA across three appearances (2.2 innings). The veteran reliever is reportedly working through some mechanical issues in camp, so perhaps he can figure things out and right the ship soon, but he's not inspiring any confidence at the moment. If the struggles continue, the Cubs could turn to Rowan Wick (ribs) or Brandon Workman to close out games.
Kimbrel allowed four earned runs on four hits in an inning of work in Friday's Cactus League game against Cleveland. He struck out one.
This was not the type of Cactus League debut Kimbrel was looking for coming off a 2020 season in which he posted a 5.28 ERA across 15.1 innings. The veteran closer was even worse in 2019, posting a 6.53 ERA in 20.2 innings of work. This is just one outing, of course, but if Kimbrel continues to struggle during spring training, fantasy managers won't have much confidence in him to start the year. The Cubs may also lose confidence quickly, leaving Rowan Wick (ribs) and possibly Brandon Workman as options to take over as the closer at some point.
Kimbrel will likely make his Cactus League debut Friday, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
The Cubs have ramped up Kimbrel and Jake Arrieta slowly during camp, as both have yet to appear in a Cactus League game. The team is being cautious with its veteran closer in hopes of keeping him fresh for the upcoming 162-game slate. Kimbrel has been up and down since coming to Chicago, but he finished 2020 on a high note (13:0 K:BB, 0.00 ERA and 0.41 WHIP over 7.1 innings in September), so there could be some reason for optimism. That said, Kimbrel's overall struggles over the past few seasons make him a somewhat risky fantasy selection.
Kimbrel was listed as the Cubs' closer by manager David Ross on Tuesday, Gordon Wittenmyer of NBC Sports Chicago reports.
Kimbrel's track record made him the obvious favorite, though his performance since joining the Cubs in the middle of the 2019 season means his grip on the role may not be too firm. In 36 innings for Chicago, he owns a 6.00 ERA, with his 35.2 percent strikeout rate proving insufficient when combined with a 14.5 percent walk rate and 2.8 HR/9. He can safely be drafted as if he'll be the team's closer on Opening Day following Ross' vote of confidence, especially as top alternative Rowan Wick is dealing with an intercostal strain, but he'll need much better numbers if he's to keep hold of the job.
Kimbrel worked a scoreless ninth inning to notch his second save of the season Saturday in the Cubs' 4-2 win over the Brewers. He gave up two hits and struck out one in the 26-pitch appearance.
With scoreless outings in 10 of his last 11 appearances to go with a 22:7 K:BB in 10.1 innings over that span, Kimbrel appears to have re-entered manager David Ross' circle of trust. While he wasn't at his sharpest Saturday, Kimbrel did well to limit the damage after giving up back-to-back singles to kick off the bottom of the ninth. Jeremy Jeffress still looks like Chicago's top end-game option with a sub-1.00 ERA and seven saves in eight chances on the season, but Kimbrel's strong form of late may have allowed him to move ahead of Rowan Wick on the closer depth chart.
Kimbrel allowed a hit and struck out two in a scoreless inning of relief Wednesday against the Reds.
Kimbrel worked the ninth inning, though it wasn't a save situation with the Cubs down 3-0. While the veteran reliever still has an unsightly 7.36 ERA, he's now posted three straight scoreless innings with six strikeouts since giving up two runs and blowing a save on Aug. 29. Jeremy Jeffress and Rowan Wick have taken over closing duties in Chicago, but if Kimbrel can continue to pitch well, he could still see some high-leverage duty as the Cubs move toward the postseason.
Kimbrel (0-1) took the loss and the blown save in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader against Cincinnati, pitching two-thirds of an inning and allowing two runs on one hit and three walks while striking out a pair.
Kimbrel entered the contest on a five-outing scoreless and hitless streak. He was called upon to protect a one-run lead in the bottom of the final frame but yielded a pair of walks and a single to allow the Reds to tie the game. Kimbrel then loaded the bases with an intentional walk, and Cincinnati subsequently walked off with a win as the result of a wild pitch Kimbrel uncorked while facing Jose Garcia. The outing was a microcosm of Kimbrel's season thus far -- he has allowed only seven hits while striking out 15 batters over eight innings, but his ERA sits at an ugly 10.13 thanks largely to 12 walks and four wild pitches.
Kimbrel hit a batter but struck out the side in a scoreless inning to earn the save in the Cubs' second game of a doubleheader Wednesday against the Cardinals.
Kimbrel was called upon to protect a two-run lead, and he turned in a vintage performance to record his first save of the season. The only blip came when he hit Tommy Edman with a pitch, the third batter of the inning. Aside from that, Kimbrel showed improved control, finding the zone with 13 of his 20 pitches while also generating five called strikes and two swinging strikes. Both Rowan Wick and Jeremy Jeffress have served in the closer role since Kimbrel's early struggles, though it's possible that Kimbrel can regain the role, particularly if he can repeat this success.
Kimbrel allowed two earned runs on two hits while retiring just a single batter in a 5-4 win over the Royals Tuesday.
Leading 5-2, the Cubs decided to let Kimbrel get another shot at the ninth inning, but after allowing a single and a double sandwiched around a strikeout, the veteran got the hook. Kyle Ryan allowed both inherited runners to score but hung on for the save. Kimbrel now has a 32.40 ERA this season, and at this point, it's hard to see him getting many more save opportunities in the near future. Rowan Wick and Jeremy Jeffress figure to benefit.
|Last 7 Games|
|05/05||vs LAD||W 6-5||1.0||0||0||0||2|
|05/04||vs LAD||W 4-3||1.0||1||1||0||2|
|05/02||@ CIN||L 12-13||1||0.0||1||0||0||0|
|05/01||@ CIN||W 3-2||1||1.0||2||0||0||2|
|04/29||@ ATL||W 9-3||1.0||0||0||1||1|
|04/22||vs NYM||W 4-3||1.0||0||0||0||1|
|04/20||vs NYM||W 3-1||1||1.0||1||0||2||2|
|More Pitching Stats|
|Minor League Pitching Stats|
|2016||AAA-Pawtucket Red Sox||0.1||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0.00||10.000|