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.
Despite some rough patches, Matt Capps continues to tie a bow on Minnesota Twins victories. The righty worked around a leadoff single (sounds familiar) but recorded the next three outs to vanquish the divisional-rival Chicago White Sox. Capps has punctuated each of his last nine save chances (3.00 ERA in 12 innings).
Minny will have an interesting financial situation on its hands this offseason with Joe Nathan (elbow) rehabbing from Tommy John surgery. Capps is eligible for arbitration, where he might make some big bank. Expect Brian Fuentes to be let go, but Jesse Crain and Matt Guerrier are expected to become free agents, too. Reliever depth might be a question next year if they can't spread the wealth.
Those hoping for Chris Sale to have a shot at closing in 2011 might have to change gears. The Chicago White Sox are giving the lefty a shot to start in 2011 - their original direction for him is merely coming to a head sooner than expected. However, it's still up in the air whether Bobby Jenks will be back with them next year, and J.J. Putz is an impending free agent, so maybe Sale's path isn't fully settled yet.
Nathan, Twins have 2011 questions
Jenks (forearm) is still hoping to be back next week, so - especially with Matt Thornton and Putz struggling - Sale can give the ChiSox a closer examination of his bullpen skills.
Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: AL | NL
Fantasy baseball closer depth charts: AL | NL
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in the prestigious LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
He appears frequently, including every Sunday, on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, as well as every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.
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