Another Brave bites the dust

by Keith Hernandez on April 15, 2008 @ 03:47:42 PDT


Mark Bowman, of, reports the Atlanta Braves have placed relief pitcher Peter Moylan (elbow) on the 15-day disabled list with an elbow injury.

Unfortunately for the Braves, Moylan will not be closing games for them while closer Rafael Soriano (elbow) recovers from elbow tendonitis. He had a good start to the season, recording one save, four holds and five strikeouts while posting an ERA of 1.59 in 5 2/3 innings pitched. Moylan put up an excellent rookie season last year as he led all rookies with a 1.80 ERA, 80 appearances and a .208 batting average against.

With both Soriano and Moylan on the sidelines, the Braves bullpen is in a state of disarray. The likely candidate to become the temporary closer appears to be relief pitcher Manny Acosta. In 2007, Acosta made only 21 appearances, posting an ERA of 2.28 while striking out 22 batters in just 23 2/3 innings. He hasn't fared as well this year, tallying an ERA of 7.20 after allowing four runs in five innings pitched.

Acosta's fantasy value has skyrocketed in the past week even as a backup option to Moylan as the Braves bullpen has been decimated with injuries. He has never recorded a save at the big league level but has spent much of the past two seasons closing at Triple-A Richmond. He had 12 saves there last season and 17 the season before.

Fantasy owners of Moylan in shallower formats may want to consider dropping him; however, he could still see some save opportunities upon his return if the team still hasn't found a reliable option. If he returns to his setup role, he still has value in deep NL-only leagues that value setup relievers.

Acosta was already useful in NL-only leagues and should be picked up off the waiver wire in all formats if you have the room. The team is optimistic that Soriano will return in a few weeks, but Acosta could still be of service if the team eases Soriano back into the closer role.

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About Keith Hernandez

Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.

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