Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat - AL

by Tim Heaney on August 20, 2010 @ 13:20:00 PDT

 


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)

Chicago White Sox

Closer: Bobby Jenks

Understudy: J.J. Putz (knee), Matt Thornton

Lurkers: Sergio Santos

Boston Red Sox RP Jonathan Papelbon
Papelbon: I sinker your battleship

Jenks pitched a perfect ninth with two K's in a blowout Chicago White Sox win Thursday; it was his first in-game work since Aug. 12. Putz (knee) had to exit in the eighth inning last night with right knee inflammation and is considered day-to-day.

The injury reportedly isn't serious, but it probably aided in manager Ozzie Guillen's decision to reinstall Jenks as the stopper, especially since Putz has stumbled over his last few outings. Give a quick look to see if Jenks was rashly dropped in your league.

Job security score: 3

Health score: 4

Mound meetings

  • The Oakland Athletics turned to Jerry Blevins for the save Thursday, and the lefty recorded a 1-2-3 inning. Michael Wuertz, Oakland's typical fill-in for Andrew Bailey (ribcage), had pitched on three of the previous four days. Thursday was only Blevins' second straight day of work.
    Blevins typically fares better against his own handedness. He doesn't deserve speculation, especially with the pending return of Bailey, who's pitching in a rehab assignment at Triple-A Sacramento today.
  • The Boston Red Sox's Jonathan Papelbon has reportedly regained the feel for his splitter. He used it Wednesday, and manager Terry Francona said he was encouraged by Paps' location of the pitch.
  • If a save falls and no one owns it, did it happen? The latest Jerome Holtzman special: Sergio Mitre registered a three-inning save in the New York Yankees' blowout win Thursday.
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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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