Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat: Tyler Clippard, Jeremy Affeldt, John Axford

by Tim Heaney on August 7, 2012 @ 12:36:22 PDT'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

San Francisco Giants RP Jeremy Affeldt
Affeldt inclined to save some?

Drew Storen was adamant that he wants a bigger workload. Will he get a more fantasy-relevant gig soon?

After Storen worked one-third of an inning to work around two walks in the eighth Monday against the Houston Astros, Tyler Clippard hit a batter, walked another and gave up an RBI double that tied the game in the bottom of the ninth. Clippard at least hung on to send it to extras.

He's given up a run in three of his last five outings, but Monday's issues resulted in the only blown save of the bunch. Over his last 15 games, he holds a 6.60 ERA and a good if not amazing 8-for-11 closing record.

As Nick mentioned yesterday, Clippard's humanity is coming at a bad time. It'll probably take a few more stumbles for Davey Johnson to consider a change, but that might be closer to happening than many of your league mates think, which is why you shouldn't leave Storen on the waiver wire.


The San Francisco Giants' acquisition of lefty Jose Mijares will allow Bruce Bochy to use Jeremy Affeldt in the eighth and ninth innings. Skip is concerned that Santiago Casilla's usage might cause his blister issues to return. That's more reason for you to take a chance on Affeldt in saves-desperate situations.


John Axford is, by default, the good guy at the back end of the Milwaukee Brewers' bullpen, especially since he had to clean up another Francisco Rodriguez mess last night. K-Rod loaded the bases with Cincinnati Reds in the eighth. Axford came on with two outs before giving up a run on both a single and a sac fly before escaping. A great defensive play by Norichika Aoki prevented the tally-scoring out from becoming something worse.

The fact Axford had a clean ninth and picked up his 18th closure reminds us that he's regained some security at the back end.

Other Monday saviors

Jim Johnson (33), Orioles
Addison Reed (20), White Sox Last 6: 6 IP, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 5-for-5 in SV
Huston Street (19), Padres
Rafael Betancourt (18), Rockies
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Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat | AL depth charts | NL depth charts

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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