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Fantasy baseball player profiles: MLB - Relief Pitchers

Fantasy baseball player profiles: MLB - Relief Pitchers

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Quick Jump: Fantasy Baseball Player Profiles

1 Brian Wilson, RP, San Francisco Giants
2 Heath Bell, RP, San Diego Padres
3 Neftali Feliz, RP, Texas Rangers
4 Joakim Soria, RP, Kansas City Royals
5 Mariano Rivera, RP, New York Yankees
6 Carlos Marmol, RP, Chicago Cubs
7 Jonathan Broxton, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
8 Andrew Bailey, RP, Oakland Athletics
9 Jonathan Papelbon, RP, Boston Red Sox
10 Francisco Rodriguez, RP, New York Mets
11 Matt Thornton, RP, Chicago White Sox
12 Huston Street, RP, Colorado Rockies
13 John Axford, RP, Milwaukee Brewers
14 J.J. Putz, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks
15 Joe Nathan, RP, Minnesota Twins
16 Jose Valverde, RP, Detroit Tigers
17 Chris Perez, RP, Cleveland Indians
18 Joel Hanrahan, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates
19 Brandon Lyon, RP, Houston Astros
20 Craig Kimbrel, RP, Atlanta Braves
21 Brad Lidge, RP, Philadelphia Phillies
22 Frank Francisco, RP, Toronto Blue Jays
23 Leo Nunez, RP, Florida Marlins
24 Francisco Cordero, RP, Cincinnati Reds
25 Ryan Franklin, RP, St. Louis Cardinals
26 Jonny Venters, RP, Atlanta Braves
27 David Aardsma, RP, Seattle Mariners
28 Kenley Jansen, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
29 Drew Storen, RP, Washington Nationals
30 Ryan Madson, RP, Philadelphia Phillies
31 Matt Capps, RP, Minnesota Twins
32 Kevin Gregg, RP, Baltimore Orioles
33 Hong-Chih Kuo, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
34 Kyle Farnsworth, RP, Tampa Bay Rays
35 Alexi Ogando, RP, Texas Rangers
36 Luke Gregerson, RP, San Diego Padres
37 Rafael Soriano, RP, New York Yankees
38 Evan Meek, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates
39 Chris Sale, RP, Chicago White Sox
40 Koji Uehara, RP, Baltimore Orioles
41 Brandon League, RP, Seattle Mariners
42 Scott Downs, RP, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
43 Daniel Bard, RP, Boston Red Sox
44 Joaquin Benoit, RP, Detroit Tigers
45 Jason Frasor, RP, Toronto Blue Jays
46 Rafael Betancourt, RP, Colorado Rockies
47 Sergio Romo, RP, San Francisco Giants
48 Matt Belisle, RP, Colorado Rockies
49 Fernando Rodney, RP, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
50 J.P. Howell, RP, Tampa Bay Rays
51 Aroldis Chapman, RP, Cincinnati Reds
52 Mike Gonzalez, RP, Baltimore Orioles
53 Clay Hensley, RP, Florida Marlins
54 Kerry Wood, RP, Chicago Cubs
55 Takashi Saito, RP, Milwaukee Brewers
56 Bobby Jenks, RP, Boston Red Sox

Brian Wilson, RP, San Francisco Giants
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4263512228613.141.25

Brian Wilson RP San Francisco Giants

Brian Wilson's growing K/9 and dwindling BB/9 are becoming bankable. His LOB% was high and might be corrected, but elite CL sometimes post high numbers there. Wilson's GB rate should keep your confidence high in this top-5 mixed stopper.


Heath Bell, RP, San Diego Padres
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3265602620693.601.23

Heath Bell RP San Diego Padres

Despite slight drop in GB/FB, Heath Bell retained elite skills. Slipping BB/9 a concern, but CL can deal with that, and his K/9 makes up for it. Bid strongly.


Neftali Feliz, RP, Texas Rangers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3245351617453.201.16

Neftali Feliz RP Texas Rangers

Neftali Feliz might switch roles again, which makes him a tenuous SV commodity. Has dominance and command beyond his years. FB rate is worrisome, but not as much for a mid-90s fastball CL. Warning: He might not stand out as much as a SP, so plan accordingly.


Joakim Soria, RP, Kansas City Royals
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
43560482020683.001.13

Joakim Soria RP Kansas City Royals

Joakim Soria's K/9 returned closer to his career norm, and it came with a return to elite GB% and a notable BB/9 improvement. On the whole, that's a positive step in solidifying his value as one of MLB's top CL. High LOB% again, but the best CL can do that on a consistent basis. One of the most reliable SV sources in the game as long as he isn't traded.


Mariano Rivera, RP, New York Yankees
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Mariano Rivera RP New York Yankees

Mariano Rivera's cutter needed a tune-up, and he's more hittable now, as his K/9 plummet shows. It isn't THAT bad, but it's not an automatic K per frame anymore. Fly-ball jump and creaky knee warn of possible vulnerability, but the 41-year-old still keeps the ball on the ground and has skills stability to prevent a Trevor Hoffman-esque collapse. Thirty-ish saves still a safe bet. Your draft room mood will determine if paying for a 41-year-old top-end option in a shaky position is an advantage. In most cases, it won't be worth an extensive bidding war.


Carlos Marmol, RP, Chicago Cubs
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2053422532574.251.40

Carlos Marmol RP Chicago Cubs

It takes an absurd K/9 profile like Carlos Marmol's to overcome BB/9 and FB plagues. The latter might come back to bite him, but his increased aggressiveness and whiff inducing earn your trust. A top CL, but he must sustain his dominance to keep his success. That doesn't look like an issue this year.


Jonathan Broxton, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2144411816373.681.30

Jonathan Broxton RP Los Angeles Dodgers

Declining velocity, erratic use and increased hittability caused Jonathan Broxton's implosion. At least LAD wants him to rebound as CL. Maybe with a new manager, he'll have a clearer usage pattern. Still has above-average heat and GB stats, which carried him before collapse. With a few adjustments, could right what has been a dominant ship; his baseline might be rougher than the past, and it's a risk, but at the right price, it could be a steal.


Andrew Bailey, RP, Oakland Athletics
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Andrew Bailey RP Oakland Athletics

Everything appears to be back to normal for Andrew Bailey. He reports no problems with his cleaned-out elbow, he dropped some weight and is OAK's' unquestioned CL. A normal elbow should help his K/9 to rebound, and he already sports clean BB/9. OAK's improved 'pen depth should created more SVO. Bailey should prove to be a modest bargain if he stays healthy.


Jonathan Papelbon, RP, Boston Red Sox
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
43465622314633.181.17

Jonathan Papelbon RP Boston Red Sox

Only in 2008 has Jonathan Papelbon been an extreme GB pitcher. His FBs are starting to catch up with him as he also establishes a higher baseline for his BB/9 - a terrible combo for what was an elite CL. Bobby Jenks and Daniel Bard lurk to pounce on a possible Paps trade. At least he still has some semblance of skills that could be fixed if he gets his arsenal in check. It's not worth overspending for him, but if he scares off other drafters, he's a potential value pick, as long as you handcuff him.


Francisco Rodriguez, RP, New York Mets
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3261522422633.541.21

Francisco Rodriguez RP New York Mets

Francisco Rodriguez's BB/9 was his best since his rookie cameo. He hit the strike zone more often and induced more GB. Unfortunately, he was also hit more often. How will he respond from torn thumb ligament? Skills rebound and draft room pessimism make him an intriguing value target, but not without volatility risk.


Matt Thornton, RP, Chicago White Sox
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2250512218373.961.38

Matt Thornton RP Chicago White Sox

Matt Thornton's attractive command and dominance makes him a helpful fantasy RP regardless of role. Negatives: Don't ignore the precipitous GB drop in 2010, and BAABIP, opponents' LD rate say he might lose some luck. But he leaned on his mid-90s heat more than ever, a positive given his arm injuries. A decent bet for at least the majority of SV chances.


Huston Street, RP, Colorado Rockies
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
33054441915533.171.09

Huston Street RP Colorado Rockies

Injuries bit again, but Huston Street showed consistency when he pitched. FB an issue at his home park, but CL can get away with it. BB/9 still top-shelf. Injury history might cause yet another price drop, but his revised offseason workouts might give him more rhythm and flexibility, and prevent him from overthrowing. Buy, as long as you're prepared for DL risk.


John Axford, RP, Milwaukee Brewers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

John Axford RP Milwaukee Brewers

It's easy to be skeptical of John Axford, considering he came from the farm depths. But there's evidence of skills here, fuelded by K/9 and GB. Closers can work with BB issues with that pattern. HR prevention might normalize but is promising. MIL has few closer-capable arms.


J.J. Putz, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3248401718483.191.21

J.J. Putz RP Arizona Diamondbacks

J.J. Putz looked like his old self last season, getting back his elite K/9 and bumping his GB%. His elite skills are made for SV. His body, however, is fragile. You MUST bid with that in mind, especially since his price is steep.


Joe Nathan, RP, Minnesota Twins
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
44060461819682.701.08

Joe Nathan RP Minnesota Twins

Joe Nathan is expected to return as the closer - sometime during the year, if not immediately - after missing all of last year because of Tommy John surgery. Initially, he may cede SV chances on consecutive days and be more hittable; BB and velocity have been problems for post-TJ pitchers in the past, and MIN has a solid backup plan. However, being a reliever should help Nathan get his velocity back sooner rather than later. Missing all of last year could be enough to drop his price, too, making him a solid value pick.


Jose Valverde, RP, Detroit Tigers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2343382017344.191.28

Jose Valverde RP Detroit Tigers

A violent 2H correction evened out Jose Valverde's brilliant pre-break, which was otherworldly. He's still a BB/9 and injury risk, but with health, his K/9 and GB% spike - thanks to splitter increase - should invite you back to get him at a potentially huge discount. Valverde can improve by being more aggressive. Even with a new SV threat in town, it'll take another giant meltdown or an injury to Valverde to lose the gig.


Chris Perez, RP, Cleveland Indians
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3156532221553.541.32

Chris Perez RP Cleveland Indians

Chris Perez's improved BB/9 and attractive K/9 help a profile that's ripe for correction. It won't be as bad as '09, but beware his elevated LOB%, lucky BABIP and lower-than-normal HR/9. CL can get away with such good fortune, but also beware his high FB% and drop in swinging strike %, which could lower his K/9 a bit more. Either way, his talent and entrenched role sustain his favorable price.


Joel Hanrahan, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Joel Hanrahan RP Pittsburgh Pirates

Joel Hanrahan is one of few relievers worthy of mixed ownership when he isn't closing. PIT allows him to throw what he wanted, and he has exploded. Outstanding K/9, improving BB/9 and GB bode well for his SV chances. Worthy speculation even if the job isn't determined yet.


Brandon Lyon, RP, Houston Astros
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
10151786114.801.53

Brandon Lyon RP Houston Astros

Brandon Lyon will open the season as CL. He had trouble keeping role in past, but he was fortunate, with FB increase, a low HR/9 and a K/9 drop. If he doesn't have SV chances, he doesn't have value in most formats. And he's "ugly SV" when he has the job.


Craig Kimbrel, RP, Atlanta Braves
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
54767411722982.280.94

Craig Kimbrel RP Atlanta Braves

Flame-throwing Craig Kimbrel's last name starts with a K for a reason. Dominancel has him in line for ATL SV. However, he'll have competition there, and his BB and FB issues might come back to bite him. Carlos Marmol-type upside worth speculation, but recognize his small sample size, risks and the CL battle.


Brad Lidge, RP, Philadelphia Phillies
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Brad Lidge RP Philadelphia Phillies

Lidge's peripherals in 2011 may not look much different from those of either of his past two seasons. His fantasy numbers could follow suit, although neither is likely to be as extreme. Health is most important for the right-hander. As his physical ability slowly deteriorates, the gamble on his volatility becomes increasingly intimidating. Overpaying is not a good idea.


Frank Francisco, RP, Toronto Blue Jays
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Frank Francisco RP Toronto Blue Jays

A more aggressive Frank Francisco increased his GB, which complemented his other stable skills. Upside comes in continued HR prevention. Roto managers should feel unsafe in pursuit of Francisco, who lost his job right out of the gate with the Texas Rangers last season and has endured some health problems. But others' chances are less likely. If Francisco's stock picks up momentum, there's a chance he'll be overvalued, but he's easily the best bet.


Leo Nunez, RP, Florida Marlins
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2045432115354.201.29

Leo Nunez RP Florida Marlins

Leo Nunez, he of the hard yet straight fastball, as CL. He seemed to make strides that should help him to gain a stronger hold on the job, and threats should keep his price low. Nunez generated more swings and misses with increased changeup usage in the past two years, and he induced more GB in 2010. His BABIP was much higher than usual, too, so some correction could be coming. Enough of a bargain to try with plan to back yourself up with other SV speculation.


Francisco Cordero, RP, Cincinnati Reds
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Francisco Cordero RP Cincinnati Reds

Lethal combo of dropping K/9 and ugly BB/9 plagues Cordero, who'll turn 36. He's hanging by the threads of a slight GB% boost, Dusty Baker's loyalty, but last year, CoCo posted worst CT% and swinging strike percentage of his career. Cordero will start the season as stopper, but how long will he perform like one? His price likely will drop, but it isn't a value pick you should be comfortable grabbing.


Ryan Franklin, RP, St. Louis Cardinals
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Ryan Franklin RP St. Louis Cardinals

Ryan Franklin has the CL job, can induce GB and improved his BB/9. His fortune relies heavily on CT, though, which started to bite back last year. Without SV, he's useless. Not a bankable CL.


Jonny Venters, RP, Atlanta Braves
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2035271317373.341.26

Jonny Venters RP Atlanta Braves

Jonny Venters found his K/9 as a RP and is a candidate for SV. His BB/9 didn't change much, but it's less harmful in relief. An advantage for him is his GB rate. A solid speculation when all established closers are gone.


David Aardsma, RP, Seattle Mariners
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

David Aardsma RP Seattle Mariners

The M's will go for at least the first few weeks of the season without David Aardsma (hip). It's Aardsma's job once he returns, but further delays wouldn't be a surprise. And the RHP is trade bait, once he demonstrates that he's healthy. SEA has younger and cheaper options, too, if they want to make a change. Plus, his skills remain volatile. High BB/9, LOB% and BABIP ripe for correction, FB% would likely be more dangerous for him if he didn't call Safeco Field home. Don't make him a priority, given the numerous factors working against him getting consistent SV chances.


Kenley Jansen, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
537714819221042.410.99

Kenley Jansen RP Los Angeles Dodgers

Former C with big arm. As Kenley Jansen gets more experience, his BB/9 can improve. FB an issue, but LAD didn't hesitate to turn to him for SV. Still in the mix if their CL falters.


Drew Storen, RP, Washington Nationals
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3151461915493.351.20

Drew Storen RP Washington Nationals

Drew Storen isn't guaranteed to CL, but he's the best bet. He flashed promise last year but lacked control in his first big-league action. Of course, it was his first professional season, so rough patches were expected. There's still plenty to like (K/9), but someone might reach for him. If he's your No. 3 mixed CL, it isn't a bad gamble.


Ryan Madson, RP, Philadelphia Phillies
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
203028129303.601.23

Ryan Madson RP Philadelphia Phillies

Rising K/9, improving BB/9 have many clammoring for Ryan Madson to close. His FB% increased, but so did his GB% - to elite figure. He's learning to pitch. His peripherals will help those in cavernous mixed leagues that can live with a SV-less RP. A handcuff for Brad Lidge owners, but if you're hoping for SV, you'll have to wait; Lidge's leash is longer than most think.


Matt Capps, RP, Minnesota Twins
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Matt Capps RP Minnesota Twins

Assuming Joe Nathan bounces back from surgery, Matt Capps' value will take a hit as the setup man. A few saves could come his way early on until Nathan gets his bearing, and he'll probably see the occasional chance to keep Nathan fresh. Capps' ground-ball improvement is a plus, but not enough to make him stand out as a setup man. His '11 value is tied to being a handcuff to Nathan and a speculative target.


Kevin Gregg, RP, Baltimore Orioles
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2045442124404.201.51

Kevin Gregg RP Baltimore Orioles

Based on Kevin Gregg's two-year contract, one would think he has the best shot to open as the team's closer this year. But, Buck Showalter isn't tipping his hand, and Koji Uehara was adequate in the role to finish the '10 season. Gregg has always been prone to giving up homers. Combine that with a high walk rate and a more hitter-friendly park than Toronto, and you have a fair amount of risk. There is reason to believe his BABIP can come down, but is there enough here for him to keep the closer's role locked down?


Hong-Chih Kuo, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Hong-Chih Kuo RP Los Angeles Dodgers

You have to watch out for injuries and limited use for Hong-Chih Kuo. He's the backup CL for LAD, so that'll have some value in the right leagues. One concern: jump in FB, drop in GB and HR fortune, but those could be remedied easily for RPs. He's ownable without save chances, too, thanks to his stable K/9 and K/BB.


Kyle Farnsworth, RP, Tampa Bay Rays
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
2041411914334.171.34

Kyle Farnsworth RP Tampa Bay Rays

Kyle Farnsworth added a sinker and a cutter to his quality heat. Reason to believe he can remain a solid performer, although probably not consistent enough to be closer. Should get save opps barring addition of closer, though. Move FB limiting has had nice impact on HR/9. High hit rate against may continue, if LD% is accurate, and judging from history, but could bring it down one more notch. Speculation only.


Alexi Ogando, RP, Texas Rangers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4360522221553.301.22

Alexi Ogando RP Texas Rangers

Why aren't many jumping on Alexi Ogando? He has a legit shot at succeeding in SV chances. Ogando oozes upside and finally got to show some when he regained his visa to the U.S. last year. Didn't need much farm time before 8.42 K/9 in 41 2/3 MLB frames. RP numbers fluctuate, but man, does he have a cannon. GB and K/9 still growing, and he's tough to hit. There's a small possibility the 27-year-old could join the rotation - they're stretching him out. His biggest impact would be in a SV role, but he has the competence to contribute in either facet. Talent warrants a dice roll.


Luke Gregerson, RP, San Diego Padres
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4365592319583.181.20

Luke Gregerson RP San Diego Padres

BABIP helped Luke Gregerson, but still has skills. Thank GB% and BB/9 improvement, too. Won't see SV opp w/o trade of CL (possible if SD doesn't contend), but ownable in mixed leagues regardless.


Rafael Soriano, RP, New York Yankees
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
33562602419533.481.27

Rafael Soriano RP New York Yankees

Rafael Soriano has appeal as next in line for SV. Health problems have held him back some, but his skills are elite and he's tough to hit. Warnings: He moves to a horrible park for a pitcher who yields ample FB, and his BB/9 has been higher in non-SV sitches. If you don't need to handcuff him to Mariano Rivera, speculation is less urgent, but his skills can help if your league is deep enough to employ them in a lineup consistently.


Evan Meek, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
1030321612214.801.47

Evan Meek RP Pittsburgh Pirates

Evan Meek can whiff batters while maintaining a GB-heavy arsenal. He's battling for SV chances. BB/9 still haunts him, and had a helpful BAABIP, but his skills combo makes him a top-priority speculation.


Chris Sale, RP, Chicago White Sox
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
14020017272502093.241.11

Chris Sale RP Chicago White Sox

Chris Sale, 22 by opening day, has all of 33 2/3 professional stanzas (21 1/3 in The Show) under his belt. He can K them with the best and coaxes GB outs, but he gives up first base and hasn't seen the best MLB has to offer yet. Still maturing, and there's more film on him now. Can be serviceable without SV in most formats and is worth a deep mixed flier.


Koji Uehara, RP, Baltimore Orioles
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4356040159732.250.82

Koji Uehara RP Baltimore Orioles

Koji Uehara demonstrated pinpoint command and solid K/9 numbers last year, especially in the second half, when he picked up all 13 of his saves. He has shown that he isn't all that reliable in the health department; elbow issues have haunted him. Moving him to the bullpen could give him the best chance to succeed and stay away from injuries. Uehara could be a good gamble in deeper leagues given the uncertainty surrounding the rest of the bullpen roles. Buck Showalter has also shown trust in the Japanese righty.


Brandon League, RP, Seattle Mariners
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3061592622413.841.33

Brandon League RP Seattle Mariners

Brandon League appears to be the default fill-in w/SEA CL injured, although the staff will stage a competition. The former TOR prospect was adequate down the stretch while the club's main man was sidelined and prompts GB more than 60% of the time. Knocking back K's, unfortunately, helped that. Hard to hit, and room to improve for LOB%.


Scott Downs, RP, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3245431518343.001.36

Scott Downs RP Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Because Mike Scioscia hasn't shown complete confidence in Fernando Rodney as closer, Scott Downs could get a shot to close at some point this year. Being left-handed may limit Downs' chance for saves, but Scioscia could still play the matchups in the ninth. Heck, Downs isn't so bad against RHB, either. Improvements in control and his already elite ground-ball rate are pluses. Downs is low-risk, with a potential for decent return.


Daniel Bard, RP, Boston Red Sox
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Daniel Bard RP Boston Red Sox

Daniel Bard could be BOS CL one day (this year?). GB rising, K/9 high and stable to counteract FB uptick. BB/9 might be an issue; it slipped as last year wore on. He's blocked for SV, but skills worth owning in deeps without SV.


Joaquin Benoit, RP, Detroit Tigers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4661462021642.951.10

Joaquin Benoit RP Detroit Tigers

Joaquin Benoit looked like a new P in his first season following rotator cuff surgery, posting a career-high GB rate with career-best velocity. Looks like his home is in the 'pen. Of course, RP numbers fluctuate, but his skills are real and harkened back to '07. Plus, he's next in line for DET SV.


Jason Frasor, RP, Toronto Blue Jays
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3050441922483.421.32

Jason Frasor RP Toronto Blue Jays

Jason Frasor is unlikely to see SV chances out of the gate, but his 2H improvement last year can't be ignored. K/9 improved for 2nd straight year and was more like '06 and '07. GB% rebound offers even more optimism. Keep him on your inseason watch list.


Rafael Betancourt, RP, Colorado Rockies
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Rafael Betancourt RP Colorado Rockies

Rafael Betancourt's K/9 and BB/9 were among the best of all RP. Warning signs: FB%, HR/9, LD%. RPs fluctuate, even one as skilled as him. Can be useful in mixed leagues as long as you ride waves, but his skills look to be getting better with age.


Sergio Romo, RP, San Francisco Giants
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
43458511913592.951.10

Sergio Romo RP San Francisco Giants

Sergio Romo: Still too many FB, but more GB, improved BB/9. Was lucky - LOB%. K/9 based on deception, likely to continue slight drop. Skills still worthy of an investment, though.


Matt Belisle, RP, Colorado Rockies
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
4076753116653.671.20

Matt Belisle RP Colorado Rockies

Matt Belisle's BB/9 is CL-worthy, and his K/9 kicked up there in 2010. Increased GB, aggressiveness, precision sparked growth. No real velocity or arsenal change, though, so his K/9 might correct itself a bit. Still a quality skills profile.


Fernando Rodney, RP, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
43665502231713.051.25

Fernando Rodney RP Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

The good news: Fernando Rodney is considered an early favorite to begin the year as the Angels' ninth-inning stopper. The bad news: Mike Scioscia has never been quick to name Rodney as the team's solution to the ninth inning. There are a handful of other options Scioscia can turn to, and a closer-by-committe is entirely feasible. F-Rod's lack of control is especially alarming when coupled with his slow K/9 erosion. He has been healthy the last couple of seasons, but that may not matter in the end.


J.P. Howell, RP, Tampa Bay Rays
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
3055442122473.441.20

J.P. Howell RP Tampa Bay Rays

J.P. Howell, who didn't pitch in the MLB in 2010, probably won't start the season on time. He might be back in May, maybe sooner if no setbacks. He has CL experience, regardless of how lucky his '09 season was. K/9 was on the rise, capped by '09 breakout. BB/9 an issue. SV history might come in handy if TB struggles there, though. Monitor.


Aroldis Chapman, RP, Cincinnati Reds
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
33145281420742.801.07

Aroldis Chapman RP Cincinnati Reds

Aroldis Chapman: Great K/9, poor BB/9. Even without a defined role, he's worth a selection as your mixed draft starts to run thin on upside options. Those banking on him to fall into save chances, though, will have to bide their time with his setup contributions, which might be volatile. Beware, though: Hype might increase his price, which adds more risk.


Mike Gonzalez, RP, Baltimore Orioles
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Mike Gonzalez RP Baltimore Orioles

With Koji Uehara and Kevin Gregg in his way, Mike Gonzalez might have a tough time finding his way into the saves column. TJ surgery is out of the way, and he worked his way past shoulder and back injuries last year. Gonzalez has shown that he can get hitters out consistently, and his dominance is not in question. He's always a risk to give up the long ball. But, throwing a few bucks at him at the end of your draft may not be such a bad idea.


Clay Hensley, RP, Florida Marlins
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Clay Hensley RP Florida Marlins

Clay Hensley performed admirably last year, especially as the closer for the final month. A starter's bag of tricks and GB talent helps him offset his soft, non-traditional stuff. His numbers are due for some correction, but he may prove to be reliable yet.


Kerry Wood, RP, Chicago Cubs
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Kerry Wood RP Chicago Cubs

Kerry Wood kept up his K/9 and DL days. GB increase a positive, but BABIP and LOB% ripe for correction. Backup CL, but little chance of usurpation without injury.


Takashi Saito, RP, Milwaukee Brewers
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Takashi Saito RP Milwaukee Brewers

The elderly Takashi Saito is next in line for SV. He hurt his hamstring last year when overcompensating for his injured shoulde but rediscovered his K/9 and GB%. Draftable as NL-only SV speculation and skills arm.


Bobby Jenks, RP, Boston Red Sox
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2011 Fantasy Baseball Projections

WSVIPHERBBKERAWHIP
00000000.000.00

Bobby Jenks RP Boston Red Sox

Should Boston trade their stopper, Bobby Jenks is the likely successor for saves. His BB/9 increased for the third straight year, and his season was shortened by injury, but he also encountered some poor fortune. His K/9 uptick was justified in his increased velocity. His BAABIP and LOB pct. leave room for recovery, especially with his nearly career-best GB rate.