Atlanta Braves closer Raisel Iglesias has been named reliever of the month for August. Iglesias' performance throughout the month was absolutely impressive and worthy of the award.
Iglesias appeared in 13 games and completed 13 innings during the month. He was a perfect 7-for-7 in saves and did not allow any runs through the month which gave him a 0.00 ERA.
Opponents accumulated a .156 average against him and his WHIP sat at 0.85 through that time as well. Raisel allowed just 7 hits, walked 4 batters, and struck out 17 batters in August as well. The Braves were 12-1 in the games that he appeared in.
He hasn't just been good in the month of August but he's been great since the All-Star break. His ERA before the All-Star break was 3.76 with 25 hits, 8 walks, and 33 strikeouts through 26.1 innings. Opponents were batting .245 against him over that timeframe.
However, his ERA in the second half sits at 0.93 through 19.1 innings including 12 hits, 5 walks, and 26 strikeouts. His opponent's average sits at .174 through that time as well.
Put those together and you get a collective ERA of 2.56 through 48 appearances with 28 saves. He has an FIP of 2.67 (12th best) and a 1.2 WAR which is 19th best amongst relievers in that category. His walk rate sits at 7.0% while having a strikeout rate of 31.9% on the season.
He has been absolutely filthy and is using his changeup a bit more often than his fastball this season and that's helped him out a lot. His changeup usage is at 36.5%, fastball at 31.3%, sinker at 17.2%, and slider at 15.1%. Overall this season, Iglesias has a chase rate of 35.4% overall which has him graded at a 98 on Baseball Savant.
It's hard not to throw that changeup, especially when he is getting a 43% whiff rate when he throws the pitch. Opponents are batting just .148 and slugging .227 against the changeup. Safe to say that pitch has helped prolong his career.
Since coming over in the trade between the Braves and Angels for Tucker Davidson and Jesse Chavez, Iggy has been everything the team hoped he would be. He's provided a confidence boost in late innings. He's able to work out of jams and keep his composure in tight spots.
The 33-year-old reliever still has two years remaining on his contract worth $16 million annually. He has been worth every penny so far and I don't expect that to change anytime soon.