The Cincinnati Reds bullpen, assumed to be the Achilles heel of this team, has been incredible during the 2023 season. Multiple relievers have stepped up into much bigger roles than expected and have excelled.
Buck Farmer has been one of the most undervalued, and perhaps, most unhittable relievers outside of Alexis Diaz on this Reds pitching staff.
Outside of the solo home run allowed to perennial All-Star Salvador Perez on Monday night, Farmer has been magnificent of late. Until that swing from the Kansas City Royals backstop, Farmer was on a streak of 11 consecutive scoreless innings.
Unsung reliever, Buck Farmer, has been clutch for the Reds bullpen of late.
This streak wasn't against lackluster offenses either. Farmer faced the likes of the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers, Boston Red Sox, and Milwaukee Brewers during that span. Farmer also notched two wins, a save, and a hold.
Since May 20th, Farmer has made an appearance in 11 games and owns an ERA of just 0.75 and a FIP of 3.28. Farmer has struck out eight of the 39 batters he's faced during that stretch and walked only one.
Before arriving in Cincinnati, Farmer had a career-ERA north of 5.00 while pitching out of the Detroit Tigers bullpen. But that type of production is not going to be sustainable for long on any team that is trying to compete.
Alexis Diaz is the unquestioned closer out of the Cincinnati Reds bullpen and actually leads the team in bWAR this season. But Farmer has the second-highest bWAR among all other relievers and is arguably David Bell's go-to reliever prior to the ninth inning.
Farmer, in addition to fellow right-hander Lucas Sims, will continue to be one of the top arms in the Cincinnati bullpen as the season continues, and could be a big piece of the relief corps that helps carry the Reds down the stretch.