In fantasy baseball, the closer position remains volatile. Rarely does every closer hang on to the job for an entire season - injuries, poor performance and managerial decisions can cloud a team's bullpen picture.
Should you be concerned about a struggling stopper? Which relievers are climbing the depth chart? Are any injuries popping up? KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat keeps you informed when you're looking for saves.
Cleveland Indians closer Kerry
Wood would not be opposed to a trade and doesn't mind going to a contender
to be a setup man. Wood: "It depends on what teams want. Ultimately we
all play this game to win. I probably wouldn't complain a whole lot [about
going to a contender]." If Cleveland can get him some more ninth-inning
work, it could increase interest in the 33-year-old. Enter Chris
Consider the trade door open
- If the Toronto Blue Jays are sellers at the deadline,
Kevin Gregg, Jason
Frasor or Scott Downs could
also be on the move. Gregg recorded his 19th save with a perfect inning yesterday.
- The Tampa Bay Rays' Rafael
Soriano and Joaquin Benoit were
unavailable last night. Cue, Matt Garza?
Manager Joe Maddon told Garza to hold off
on his usual side session, and that he might be used to give an overworked
bullpen a chance to recover. Garza came on for the final two outs in the ninth.
His final line: one hit, one walk, no runs in two-thirds of an inning. And
his first career save.
- Though his team was losing in the late innings, Boston
Red Sox manager Terry Francona wanted to
get Jonathan Papelbon some extra work
yesterday. The righty hadn't been used since July 2, and with today off, it
would have been at least a week between appearances. Paps threw a scoreless
seventh with one K.
- Phil Coke garnered his first save
in a Detroit Tigers uniform yesterday. The righty
struck out one to secure the Tigers' 4-2 win. Closer Jose
Valverde was likely unavailable after throwing 38 pitches over the
previous two days. The same is probably true for Ryan
Perry, who threw each of the previous two days and only returned from
a shoulder injury June 30.
- The Seattle Mariners' Brandon
League made a mess of the eighth yesterday. The 27-year-old righty
was charged with his fifth blown save of the year as he gave up three runs
on two walks and a hit without recording an out. He has now allowed five runs
on five hits and two walks over his last two appearances (one-third of an
inning) - both blown saves. David Aardsma
owners can only shake their heads as the righty misses out on those possible
Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: AL
Fantasy baseball closer depth charts: AL
About Bryce McRae
Bryce McRae is a Managing Editor with KFFL and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1999. He joined KFFL as a volunteer writer in March 2005 before becoming a Hot off the Wire Analyst in March 2006. He began working in his current capacity in September 2008. His work has appeared on fantasy sports sites such as Yahoo! and CBS Sportsline as well as in print. He graduated from the University of British Columbia in 2008 with a B.A. in History and U.S. Studies.
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