KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat series gives you no-nonsense ratings of performances, injuries and managerial decisions in MLB bullpens. Get your arm loose: Let's find fantasy baseball players in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball league who'll get saves.
Aceves reflected the attitude of his fantasy owners Friday. The righty was not used to close out the Red Sox's Friday win. He didn't take too kindly to that. Bobby Valentine didn't take kindly to Aceves' reaction, and the pitcher was suspended for three games. Peter Abraham has the gossip, some of which stems from the happenings in Boston's Thursday marathon.
Who took Aceves' place Friday? Bailey, who stayed on for 1 1/3 innings of shutout work and netted his first wrap-up of 2012. He also appeared Saturday and didn't give up a run in non-save duty. Melancon stepped in Sunday because they didn't want to push Bailey; the replacement for the replacement also logged a scoreless inning to pick up a closure of his own.
Changing of the guard? After Aceves returns, it might be possible. He's hardly been as smooth as Bailey has been in Bailey's limited work (one run, four K's, one free pass in 4 1/3 stanzas). Boston has little to lose by re-installing Bailey a little earlier than expected, and Aceves' attitude may not do him any favors.
Luckily, Bailey's performance will probably be a sufficient reason for Boston to return him, at least in a quasi-regular fashion, to the role for which they acquired him last offseason. He should not be on anymore waiver wires.
Job security score: 1
Having Jose Mijares on board has allowed Bruce Bochy to utilize Javier Lopez in save situations of late. The latter wrote his latest entry for the San Francisco Giants' committee Friday by going four outs to register his fourth save of the year and third last week.
Had Lopez not retired three lefty lumber swingers and switch-hitter Chipper Jones, the second hitter in that parade, Dan Uggla would've stepped up next, meaning the southpaw would've been lifted for Clay Hensley.
Mijares' presence gives more credence for his fellow lefty hurler being used as the top closer for his handedness in this gathering. Though he'll still share opps with Sergio Romo and others, therefore limiting his ceiling, Lopez should be scooped up in dual-universe formats at this time of year when every semi-regular savior should be owned.
After back-to-back lock-ups, John Axford stumbled Friday by allowing a three-run lead to dwindle to one, before being yanked in favor of Kameron Loe, who fanned the final batter to steal the save. Jim Henderson and Francisco Rodriguez had pitched earlier in the game, but Loe probably has pulled ahead of them on the hierarchy.
Axford remains the priority option but not the everyday closer. Loe is worth a grab in deep mixed leagues for the possibility of situations like this arising, or him grabbing the job all for himself sometime in the final month-plus.
Dale Thayer was on paternity leave this weekend, so when the San Diego Padres needed a hero Sunday, they held out for Luke Gregerson. He was, indeed, strong and fast, working around one hit to record four scoreless outs to wrap things up.
Thayer will be activated Monday, though, so Gregerson will return to backup duty. He might poach another opp or two before Huston Street (calf) returns, if he does, but don't make Gregerson a mixed-league priority yet.
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