The A’s weakest link has been its defense, but the bullpen is a close second. Some will even say the two weaknesses are interchangeable.
Bob Melvin has made a few poor decisions this year in regards to his bullpen. The whole closer by committee almost never works and yet the team experimented with it in April.
The team finally decided to hand the 9th inning to Santiago Casilla, though, in May.
Casilla was awful in the month of May.
In 8.1 innings of work, Casilla posted a 6.48 ERA and opponents hit .306/.419/.441 off him. The A’s signed him to a two-year $11 million deal. The A’s gave away some free cash this past winter, or so it seems.
Ryan Dull, another important piece to Oakland’s bullpen, has struggled to find consistency this year. He struggled in April, but he has really struggled in May.
With six innings of work in May, Dull went out and allowed six runs and allowed opponents to hit .261 off him. Dull played well in 2016, but his struggles this year have cast a large shadow over his past accomplishments.
He hardly looks like the same player.
Madson went 1-1 with a 1.74 ERA in 10.1 innings of work. Hendricks went 1-0 with a 1.46 over 12.1 innings of work.
Montas, the young flamethrower, has had his share of struggles this year. He did show some good potential, though, in May. He posted a 3.55 ERA over nine appearances in May.
Bob Melvin will need to address Casilla’s struggles in June if the team wants any sort of consistency in June. The team has plenty of options, but Madson seems like the logical choice to replace Casilla.