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.
|Job security (JS) score
||1 (unstable) to 5 (untouchable)
|Health (H) score
||1 (injury-prone) to 5 (durable)
Closer: J.J. Putz
Understudy: Bobby Jenks (back), Matt Thornton
Lurkers: Sergio Santos
Is Jenks jinxed?
Jenks, still trying to win back manager Ozzie Guillen's affection, hasn't pitched since Thursday and was unavailable Sunday due to back spasms. He's day-to-day, but Guillen expects Jenks to go on the DL soon, possibly before Tuesday's game.
Putz probably didn't make Ozzie happy with the five runs (four earned) he gave up in his back-to-back blown saves and losses this weekend; the righty pitched Friday, Saturday and Sunday and could use a break soon. Maybe he's gassed.
If Putz needs time off and Jenks goes on the DL, Thornton would probably step in; tuck him away if you need saves help, followed by Santos if you need to dig deep. Fast-traveling rook Chris Sale? A long shot.
Job security score: 1
Health score: 4
- Jonathan Papelbon and Daniel Bard were unavailable
to pitch for the Boston Red Sox Saturday, so Felix Doubront notched
a vulture save. Entering with one on and one out in the ninth, Doubront received
a break immediately when the runner was caught stealing. Doubront then recorded
a K to end it.
Paps, who has struggled with flat pitches and spotty movement, pitched a scoreless
non-save inning Friday, working around a walk.
- After allowing three hits in non-save work Saturday - including a
solo jack - Alfredo Simon has now given up at least one run in seven
of his last 11 outings. The Baltimore Orioles righty, who has an 8.25 ERA
over that time, might soon find himself sharing save chances with Mike Gonzalezand Koji Uehara when the O's can generate them. If your
standing in saves is secure and you own Simon, he might be better off on your
bench for now.
Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: AL
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.
Don't miss these great reports....