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.
What a nauseating week for Jonathan Broxton (illness). The righty was held out of Thursday action because of reported stomach sickness. The timing probably didn't hurt, though. Fantasy ratio darling Hong-Chih Kuo stepped in for the closure, working around a walk to fan two for his third save of the year.
Why is J-Brox coughing up leads?
Broxton has a chance to come back Friday. For the long term, Los Angeles Dodgers skipper Joe Torre shot down the idea of switching Broxton and Kuo's roles.
- A report says several MLB teams believe the Pittsburgh Pirates would install Joel Hanrahan as closer if they can trade Octavio Dotel. Meek has had a better overall season, but Hanny has been beasting since May ended (1.71 ERA, 0.94 WHIP).
Meek remains the better speculative target because of his consistency throughout the season, but don't dismiss Hanrahan.
- Brad Lidge wrapped up the Philadelphia Phillies' 11-inning victory despite giving up a walk. It was his first action since Saturday. Lidge's control issues appear to be catching up to him again, though - he has five walks over his last five appearances. His job doesn't appear to be in jeopardy - he'd probably need to have a 2009-style meltdown for that to happen.
- Chad Qualls pitched two scoreless innings last night, showing off his new placement near the center of the rubber. Juan Gutierrez made the same change recently. Between the extra work scouting each other these relievers are required to put in during interim manager Kirk Gibson's tenure and these new changes, maybe there's hope. Maybe.
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 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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