Bullpen of the Week: Marlins

Bullpen of the Week: Marlins

The Marlins haven't played the way they expected to early this year, but a three-game winning streak capped off by a win on Sunday has them gaining a bit of momentum in the National League East as June continues.

Miami has won eight of its last 10, and the club's relief pitchers have been a big part of the recent hot streak. That recent excellence earned them the honor of "Bullpen of the Week presented by The Hartford."

As part of the MLB Prevailing Moments program, each Monday throughout the 2017 season, MLB.com is honoring the "Bullpen of the Week presented by The Hartford." An industry-wide panel of MLB experts, including legendary stats guru Bill James, constructed a metric based on James' widely renowned game-score formula, to provide a weekly measurement of team-bullpen performance.

BULLPEN OF THE WEEK WINNERS
Week Team
1 Rockies
2 Reds
3 Astros
4 Angels
5 Indians
6 Angels
7 Astros
8 Dodgers
9 Marlins
10 Red Sox
11 Dodgers

Here's how the Bullpen Rating System is compiled for each week. For reference, a weekly score of 100 is considered outstanding:

• Add 1.5 points for each out recorded
• Add 1.5 points for each strikeout
• Add 5 points for a save
• Subtract 2 points for each hit allowed
• Subtract 4 points for each earned run allowed
• Subtract 2 points for each unearned run allowed
• Subtract 1 point for each walk
• Subtract 5 points for a blown save

The Miami bullpen scored 124.5 points by allowing four earned runs and 10 hits in 24 2/3 innings of work. Relievers struck out 33 against 10 walks, and they earned three saves.

Every Marlins reliever had a hand in capturing the honor, but Dustin McGowan, Brian Ellington, David Phelps, Jarlin Garcia and Nick Wittgren were particularly effective over the last seven days.

McGowan was the workhorse of the group, pitching six innings over three games and giving up one run while striking out five. Ellington punched out seven over three innings, giving up one run. Phelps pitched 3 1/3 innings of scoreless ball over three games, striking out four. Garcia and Wittgren appeared in four games apiece and combined for five shutout frames and five strikeouts.

The unexpected: Entering the week, starter Edinson Volquez hadn't won a game all season, but he earned the win on Monday and then tallied another victory on Saturday with his first career no-hitter. That limited Miami's relief work on those two days, but an injury to Tuesday starter Justin Nicolino and a short outing by Vance Worley on Sunday pressed the bullpen into extra action.

How they prevailed: McGowan, Ellington, Wittgren and Worley combined to throw six innings of two-run ball on Tuesday after Nicolino left with a thumb contusion. And on Sunday, with Worley roughed up in 3 2/3 innings of work, the relief corps came to the rescue again. McGowan, Kyle Barraclough, Garcia, Wittgren, Phelps and closer A.J. Ramos combined for 5 1/3 frames of shutout ball on two hits, helping power Miami to the comeback win.

The Marlins' formidable week in the 'pen allowed them to finish ahead of the second-place Dodgers, who compiled a 103 rating for the week. Third place belonged to the Angels, who had a rating of 100.5.

Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.