Yunior Marté an intriguing option for back end of Phillies bullpen
Yunior Marté is an under-the-radar Phillies 40-man roster member.
The Philadelphia Phillies have not always had the best bullpen in recent years. Even though it was pretty effective last season, there are some holes to fill when it comes to Phillies relievers.
Dave Dombrowski noticed this issue this past offseason and acquired Gregory Soto via trade and signed Craig Kimbrel and Matt Strahm. He also made an under-the-radar move that could prove beneficial — trading left-hander Erik Miller for San Francisco Giants reliever Yunior Marté.
Marté, a native of the Dominican Republic, made his MLB debut last year at 27 years old. In 39 appearances as a middle-inning reliever, he posted a 5.44 ERA while striking out 44 batters in 48 innings pitched.
He was not all that effective in his first stint in the majors, but he gets a fresh start now that he gets to don red pinstripes. Marté's arsenal includes a high 90s sinker paired with a devastating slider that disappears against right-handed hitters.
Marté's stuff allows him to be a formidable reliever. Even with his poor performance last season, an improvement could be in store. His xERA in 2022 was 3.83, compared to his 5.44 actual ERA. Also, he was in the top three percentile in barrel rate. That suggests Marté avoids very hard contact, which makes sense for a pitcher with a sinker as nasty as his.
FanGraphs projects Marté will finish with a 4.15 ERA with the Phillies this season, which is a considerable upgrade from his time with San Francisco. Marté is an interesting option who we will see more of in spring training. Even if Marté does not make the Opening Day roster come March 30, he is a name to keep an eye on if the Phillies need bullpen depth later in the season.