After an impressive 2020 season with the club, left-hander Richard Bleier entered the 2021 campaign as a key part of the Miami Marlins bullpen. The veteran reliever would go-on to enjoy yet another strong season, arguably the best of Bleier’s six-year MLB career.
Miami Marlins 2021 Season Review: LHP Richard Bleier
Beginning the 2021 season in a middle-inning relief role, Bleier would struggle however to begin the year posting a combined 6.35 ERA across his first 13 appearances during the month of April. Those struggles would however disappear beginning in the month of May where Bleier posted a combined 2.08 ERA across 10 appearances.
That success would continue for the veteran southpaw into the summer months where Bleier would only allow one run across the month of June, as well as a strong month of July where he didn’t allow a run until July 20.
Bleier would go-on to post a combined 2.25 ERA across 11 appearances during the month of August, and would finish the 2021 season on a phenomenal stretch by not allowing a single run across his final 12 appearances, one that saw his ERA for the year drop below 3.00 for the first time since mid-July.
The 34-year-old would make a total of 68 relief appearances with the Marlins in 2021 where he posted a combined 3-2 record with a 2.95 ERA across 58 innings. Posting a career-low 0.983 WHIP, Bleier also struck out a career-high 44 batters compared to only allowing six walks.
Posting a 1.2 WAR, Bleier also added career-high’s in a few notable categories due to his impressive strikeout/walk numbers such as a 6.8 K/9 and a 19.6 K%, as well as a career-low 0.9 BB/9 and 2.7 BB%.
One of the most-impactful areas for the Miami Marlins in 2021 was the bullpen with Bleier as one of the mainstays throughout the season. The veteran left-hander will return for the Marlins in 2022, likely filling a similar middle-inning role.