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.
Andrew Bailey (back) might be ready for game action Wednesday. The Oakland Athletics' stopper threw long toss on Monday and said flat-ground work went well. He might be throwing a side session and could be cleared to pitch if it goes well.
Ready for Round 2: Simon, Gonzalez
Fill-in stopper Michael Wuertz lost it for Oakland in the bottom of the 10th yesterday, giving up a two-run dinger.
Nay-Rod? Chris Perez wrapped up a Cleveland Indians save, working around two hits to end things by retiring the New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez, who was in search of his 600th dinger. Perez has now pitched on three consecutive days, totaling 58 pitches, and has not allowed a run in his last 12 appearances (11 1/3 innings).
Kerry Wood (finger), meanwhile, threw a promising 30-pitch bullpen session yesterday and might be going on a rehab assignment soon. The Tribe said he won't be activated Wednesday, his first eligible day.
- Mike Gonzalez has finally defeated Alfredo Simon. Well, the contest was who would have the better game during a blowout loss. Gonzo threw 1 2/3 perfect frames, and Simon allowed two runs on two hits and a walk in one inning.
Noteworthy: Gonzo's fastball sat in the low to mid-90s. Though he probably still has to make more progress before he can steal save outings, Gonzo at least is showing positive signs to make him worthy of fantasy stashing.
- David Purcey fell into a save conversion Monday for the Toronto Blue Jays, whose bullpen was overworked following a Sunday doubleheader. The lefty - a former top prospect - has settled nicely into his relief role - posting a 1.74 ERA with a 1.02 WHIP.
Manager Cito Gaston thinks Purcey, who posts effective dominance and boasts decent heat, could be an effective late-inning arm. Maybe he's the next Scott Downs. Keeper prospectors take note.
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 LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, he appears on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio on Thursdays and Sundays, and every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.
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