Who is the ‘Joe Smith’ of 2020? Answer: Adam Cimber
The obvious comparison between the 2011 Joe Smith and the 2020 Adam Cimber is the release. Both provide a sidearm thrower that can throw off a batter’s eye and makes them more difficult to face. The role of the two, however, is a bit different.
Smith was the Tribe’s best reliever in 2011. Tossing a Bullpen Mafia-high 67 innings, Smith was the established reliever of the group that could be relied on in any situation. He held the lowest ERA of the unit at 2.01 and the second-best WHIP at 1.09 while allowing just one home run.
This year, Cimber isn’t regarded as the best reliever of the group, but he does have one of the better stat lines of the current Bullpen Mafia. With an ERA of 1.17, Cimber has the second-lowest on the team while also having an impressive 0.91 WHIP.
Perhaps the most glaring resemblance beyond just their delivery is how they get outs. In 2011 Smith had just 45 strikeouts over his 67 innings. This year, Cimber has just four strikeouts over 7.2 innings. Both of them were effective and knew how to get outs, but they didn’t do it in the typical way, but instead relied on their defense.
Having a strong reliever that is reliable in any situation is key and both Smith and Cimber supply that to their respective Bullpen Mafia groups.