Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: David Aardsma, more

by Tim Heaney on May 11, 2011 @ 00:28:51 PDT


What are the odds that you still own the relief pitchers you rostered in your fantasy baseball draft?'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.

Mound meetings

  • David Aardsma has a Grade 2 sprain of his right elbow's ulnar collateral ligament and will visit Dr. Lewis Yocum (aka the West Coast branch of Tommy Johns "R" Us). That procedure isn't a guarantee to happen, but it still looks like Aardsma will be out for a much longer time. Although Brandon League has blown the save in each of his last two chances (including Tuesday), his owners are sitting pretty for the long term in controlling Seattle Mariners saves.

    St. Louis Cardinals RP Eduardo Sanchez
    Storen settling in

  • It said Eduardo Sanchez next to the "SV" header in the Tuesday box score, but the St. Louis Cardinals don't consider him the absolute last line of defense. His Carlos Marmol impression isn't impressing Tony La Russa, who again had backup options warming in the ninth - this time Fernando Salas and Trever Miller. Sanchez worked around a two-out walk to put out the fire.
    Sanchez has four K's, eight walks and a 4.50 ERA through four May innings (five appearances). The 22-year-old has three saves in that time, but they've come with drama. While still the top bird, he doesn't have much room to fly and won't as long as his command remains spotty.
  • His comically high 96.2 percent left-on-base percentage and decline in K/9 aside, Drew Storen's performance so far has justified him taking over the closer role from Sean Burnett - if strictly in Jim Riggleman's actions and not in announced fashion.
    Coming off recording his eighth save of the year Tuesday, Storen has bumped his grounder inducement and has been more effective with his fastball. Even with the impending LOB correction, relievers can still get by with a high figure, and it's hard to bet on Storen melting down so much that it cripples your team.
  • Frank Francisco blew the save chance last night by giving up a leadoff homer, but the Toronto Blue Jays still consider him the better option at the back end. Jon Rauch might see a chance if needed tonight, and his owners can hang tight if it's a deep league or they're desperate, but it'll take more than Tuesday's gaffe for Francisco to lose the lead.
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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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