The Pittsburgh Pirates have placed closer Jason Grilli on the disabled list with a left oblique strain. The move is retroactive to April 21st as Grilli hasn’t pitched since then after blowing back-to-back save chances.Grilli is currently sporting a 4.50 ERA and 1.38 WHIP in only 8 innings of work. The 37 year old closer has struggled to show the form he had in 2013 when he posted 33 saves with a 2.70 ERA and 1.06 whip. He added a whopping 74 strikeouts in only 50 innings of work.
Mark Melancon will take over closing duties while Grilli is out. Melancon is no stranger to 9th inning work as he had 16 saves last season and had 20 for Houston back in 2011. Melancon has a career K/9 rate of 8.18 while only walking 2.44 per 9 innings. Oblique strains can linger, especially for a pitcher, so there’s a chance Melancon is closing for much longer than the two weeks Grilli is slated to be out. He’s a worthy pick up in just about all formats for his saves potential on a solid Pirates team.