All the early season usage of David Bednar may be catching up to him
The 8th inning of game four seemed like a perfect situation for David Bednar to go for an extended save, something he has done more often this season than any other reliever in baseball. Well, with the Pirates leading 6-3 Derek Shelton went to Yerry De Los Santos despite the Cubs having the bases loaded with just one out.
While De Los Santos was hurt by a weakly hit ground ball and a hard hit 97 MPH grounded off the bat of Nico Hoerner, the aforementioned Cruz play, it did not work out. This led to the Cubs scoring 5 runs in the inning and taking a 7-6 lead.
Bednar would be summoned in the top of the 9th with the game tied at 7, after a game-tying home run by Michael Chavis in the bottom half of the 8th, and he retired the Cubs in order. Then in the top of the 10th inning Shelton went to Chris Stratton despite Bednar only throwing 14 pitches.
The fact Bednar was not gone to in the 8th and did not remain in the game for the 10th inning may be a sign that Shelton and the Pirates are worried about his usage. Especially since he had not pitched since Sunday.
All the usage of Bednar early this season may be catching up to him. Maybe Shelton is finally worried about Bednar’s arm turning to mush. Hopefully, this will not become an issue moving forward.