Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat - NL

by Tim Heaney on April 20, 2010 @ 12:00:00 PDT

 


Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: AL | NL

Fantasy baseball closer depth charts: AL | NL

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.

Key

Job security (JS) score 1 (unstable) to 5 (untouchable)
Health (H) score 1 (injury-prone) to 5 (durable)

 

Colorado Rockies

Closer: Franklin Morales

Understudy: Manuel Corpas, Matt Belisle

Lurkers: Matt Daley

Disabled list: Huston Street (shoulder)

Street made about 60 tosses from up to 100 feet in a rehab workout Monday and has participated in three throw-and-catch sessions in Tucson with positive results. Rox GM Dan O'Dowd wants to see how Street recovers after throwing live batting practice, though, so be patient.

Morales has blown his last two save chances, including a two-walk, balk-fueled meltdown Sunday to lose to the Atlanta Braves; in all fairness, his April 14 gaffe involved an unearned run. Pitching coach Bob Apodaca said Morales needs to refine his slider and stop leaning on his fastball; the staff also said the left-hander needs to keep emotions in check after his balk.

Rox manager Jim Tracy, however, said he was comfortable sending Morales back out if needed Monday, presumably in a save chance. Team brass also stood behind its interim stopper by calling his deceptive pickoff move a potentially unfair magnet for scrutiny and calling the league to ask for clarification on the call.

Don't be surprised if Colorado gives an occasional save chance to one of their understudies; lean Corpas if you have to speculate on one. Still, it's hard to see the team making a "permanent" interim change - especially if Street's timetable shortens.

Colorado Rockies RP Huston Street
Street: Cleaning out the cobwebs

Mixed league Morales owners must start thinking long term: They won't have much use for him outside of a desperation stash when Street comes back.

Job security score: 2

Health score: 4

Mound meetings

  • The Philadelphia Phillies' Brad Lidge threw another scoreless inning for Single-A Clearwater Monday, with one strikeout and two groundouts; he needed only nine pitches (five sliders and four heaters). His last three one-inning stints have been scoreless as he combined for four K's and one walk.
    He's gaining strength with each outing - encouraging since he had five appearances in 10 days. The righty will probably head to Double-A Reading, and his current pace might put him back in the bigs before the end of the month. You should do one last check to see if Lidge is floating on your wire. If so, stash him immediately.
  • Heath Bell has allowed a run in each of his last two outings. The San Diego Padres stopper escaped the first jam with a save Sunday but couldn't slam the door Monday, allowing a game-tying solo jack. No worries here, though - Bell's peripherals remain top-notch.
  • Jenrry Mejia, the dazzling 20-year-old New York Mets righty, is receiving advice on his changeup from closer Francisco Rodriguez, who taught him a new grip, and pitching coach Dan Warthen. Mejia now employs a two-seam grip on his string pull and has reduced its velocity to around 84 to 86 mph. Tuck that away, LIMA seekers.

Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: AL | NL

Fantasy baseball closer depth charts: AL | NL

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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 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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