CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe
<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Interleague Report: We... (08/04)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 18 (07/28)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 20 (08/11)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Lea... (08/04)

August 4, 2014

Closer Report

Week 19

by Mauricio Rubio

the archives are now free.

All Baseball Prospectus Premium and Fantasy articles more than a year old are now free as a thank you to the entire Internet for making our work possible.

Not a subscriber? Get exclusive content like this delivered hot to your inbox every weekday. Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get instant access to the best baseball content on the web.

Subscribe for $4.95 per month
Recurring subscription - cancel anytime.

a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Purchase a $39.95 gift subscription
a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

Chicago White Sox

It’s August 3, and the White Sox have not figured out their closer situation, and they have the worst bullpen in baseball. It’s been a parade of bad as candidate after candidate assumed the job and then was either lost to attrition (Matt Lindstrom, Nate Jones, Zach Putnam) or general ineffectiveness (Ronald Belisario, Daniel Webb). It’s been a rough time, and there isn’t a quick or realistic fix on the roster or in the system. Cheap bullpen replacements can be made from minor league starters who only have two pitches, have spotty command, have durability concerns, and so on and so forth. The White Sox don’t have that guy anywhere in their system at present, which is a short-term problem. Webb has stuff but zero command. Petricka is a middle-relief arm forced into a high-leverage role. Belisario should not be rostered anymore. If you’re desperate for any type of save speculation, the White Sox are a last resort, and honestly you might be better off grabbing Lindstrom and hoping for a quick and effective rehab stint.

Texas Rangers
It’s a small sample, but Neftali Feliz has five strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings as of August 2. Feliz is still working back from injury, and he’s operating in the low 90s ,which is a departure from when he was pumping 96-98 with his fastball. The Rangers don’t have anything to play for, so I think Feliz gets a long leash here. Still, given the injury history with Feliz and the lack of velocity, keep Neal Cotts and Shawn Tolleson in the back of your mind.

Jim Johnson
Johnson was released by the Oakland A’s, as they made a very tough decision in cutting ties with both the righty and the $10 million they owe him. The writing was on the wall after Sean Doolittle decided that he wanted to make the jump into the elite closer echelon (seriously, he has 69 strikeouts against four walks in 48 2/3 innings this year). So what went wrong with Johnson? He was never an elite-level bat-misser; his major league high strikeout rate was 19.2 percent. He lost just enough in his groundball rate over the past three years, and his flyballs started going over the fence. The end product was an extremely hittable pitcher with a higher HR:FB ratio who was giving up more flyballs. That’s a bad mix. The Orioles will give him a workout, but with Zach Britton’s perhaps-unexpected brilliance in the ‘pen, it’s likely that Johnson has gone the way of Kevin Gregg.


Colorado Rockies
LaTroy Hawkins hasn’t gotten a save since July 9 and hasn’t been effective his last four times out. Maybe our Adam Ottavino gamble from June will pay off now!

Detroit Tigers
Joe Nathan is riding a scoreless streak that dates back to July 20. That’s real cute considering that I claimed Joakim Soria the day he was acquired by the Tigers (July 23). Oh, and Soria had a disaster outing as well, so that speculative play is going really well.

Cincinnati Reds
Aroldis Chapman put the fear of the baseball gods into anyone who owns him and has a tenuous lead in saves in a roto league. He had a hamstring cramp on Thursday, but he went on to pitch and earn the save on Friday, so all is well.

Mauricio Rubio is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Mauricio's other articles. You can contact Mauricio by clicking here

Related Content:  Saves,  Closers,  Fantasy

4 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Interleague Report: We... (08/04)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 18 (07/28)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 20 (08/11)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Lea... (08/04)

Rumor Roundup: Suspensions, Extensions, and ...
Short Relief: Spring Dismissals, Veteran Exp...
Premium Article Guarding The Lines: The Pompey Zone
Looking Back on Tomorrow: Arizona Diamondbac...
Looking Back on Tomorrow: San Francisco Gian...
Circle Change: Daniel Murphy Raises the Ghos...
Looking Back on Tomorrow: Minnesota Twins

Fantasy Article The Buyer's Guide: Lucas Duda
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of August 1-3
Premium Article What You Need to Know: August 4, 2014
The Week in Quotes: July 28-August 3, 2014
The Prospectus Hit List: Monday, August 4th
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Leagues With In-Season Sa...
Fantasy Article Interleague Report: Week 19

2014-08-09 - TINO (There Is No Offseason): Ep. 26: The Vo...
2014-08-07 - Flags Fly Forever Podcast: Ep. 29: It's Not ...
2014-08-05 - Premium Article The Call-Up: Javier Baez
2014-08-04 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 19
2014-08-02 - Premium Article The Call-Up: Mike Foltynewicz
2014-08-02 - TINO (There Is No Offseason): Ep. 25: Very C...
2014-07-31 - Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Not Just A Pretty Face

2014-08-25 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 22
2014-08-18 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 21
2014-08-11 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 20
2014-08-04 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 19
2014-07-28 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 18
2014-07-21 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 17
2014-07-14 - Fantasy Article Closer Report: Week 16