While Clase has more saves, James Karinchak is arguably the best pitcher in the Cleveland Indians bullpen currently. Karinchak won’t hit triple digits on the radar gun nearly as often as Clase, but his mix of speed and breaking balls has his stat line looking even more impressive.
Over 19.1 innings this season, one more out than Clase, Karinchak has allowed just one run for a 0.47 ERA, the fourth best mark among pitchers with five or more saves. On top of that, he’s been able to nearly double Clase’s strikeout total having sent down 36 batters on three strikes. For perspective, the Tribe have recorded 58 total outs when Karinchak is on the mound and 36 have been strikeouts. That’s 62 percent.
As for his one run given up, it was a solo home run to Hunter Dozier back on May 3 during the seventh inning of an 8-6 victory for Cleveland. Other than that, he’s been near perfect this season on the bump.
Like Clase, Karinchak could continue to work on his walks, having walked seven so far this season. However, with how he’s been rolling early on this season it’s hard to argue with any of his methods right now. He’s also finished just nine games this season compared to Clase’s 15, so doing that more often if his role grows will be something to track.