The Florida Marlins have placed RP Henry Owens (shoulder) on the 15-day disabled list with tendonitis in his right rotator cuff. The move is retroactive to Wednesday, May 9.
Owens had done well so far as Florida's closer, with a 1.96 ERA, 12 strikeouts and four saves in 18 1/3 innings. While there isn't too much information available on the injury, this news isn't very encouraging for any pitcher. He should be back as the closer once he comes off the disabled list because of the success he has had, as long as the injury isn't serious. It does give several others an opportunity to showcase themselves, though.
The main candidate to take over appears to be relief pitcher Taylor Tankersley, who has a 2-0 record, a 2.70 ERA and six strikeouts in 10 innings this season. Other candidates include reliever Matt Lindstrom, with a 2.51 ERA and 15 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings, along with reliever Kevin Gregg, who has a 3.00 ERA and 20 strikeouts in 21 innings. Relief pitcher Jorge Julio, who started the season as the closer, has made just one appearance since coming off the disabled list and is not expected to be considered until he demonstrates some consistency.
Tankersley is a talented pitcher and is worth picking up to fill in for Owens. If he isn't available, an extremely temporary solution is Washington Nationals pitcher Jon Rauch, who is filling in for Chad Cordero while Cordero is on the bereavement list. Rauch had a rough April but hasn't allowed an earned run in four appearances. Another short-term option is Atlanta Braves reliever Rafael Soriano, who has taken the lead as the fill-in for closer Bob Wickman (back). He has five saves this year, including four in his last six appearances and three straight games with a save. Wickman is expected to return next week, however.
Fantasy owners could also look to Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Hideki Okajima or Toronto Blue Jays reliever Jeremy Accardo. Okajima sports a 0.53 ERA, a 0.65 WHIP and 21 strikeouts in 17 innings. He may get the occasional save chance if the Red Sox limit closer Jonathan Papelbon (shoulder) to prevent wear and tear on Papelbon's shoulder. Accardo seems to be the fallback option in Toronto, with current closer Jason Frasor struggling. Accardo has yet to allow a run this year while fanning 13 in 14 2/3 innings.
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