August 22, 2017
Welcome back to another edition of the Closer Report. There wasn’t a ton of news in Reliever Land over the past week, though there were a couple of big news points that did come down as well as a couple of tough situations to crack adding new wrinkles. Before we get to all of that, though, just a reminder that you can keep up with any changes on the Closer Grid. Now, let’s get on to the good stuff.
Aroldis Chapman kicked out of closer role in New York
Some huge news came out of the Yankees clubhouse this past week as their big-money closer Aroldis Chapman is now just their big-money, late-inning reliever. The fireballer has had a brutal month of August in which he’s allowed runs in four of his six outings and is the owner of a 9.45 ERA while also allowing opponents to post a .906 OPS. Command has been the biggest issue, as he’s been unable to find the strike zone and has fallen behind in counts on a far-too regular basis. Some speculate that his heavy usage in the 2016 postseason is the cause of these issues, and there is plenty of reason to believe that to be true. Whatever the reason, Joe Girardi has seen enough and will look elsewhere in his super-bullpen. Dellin Betances got and converted the team’s first save chance in the post-Chapman era, and he’s probably the most ideal reliever to own out of New York. That being said, David Robertson should also be rostered, as he’ll also likely factor into some ninth innings. Unfortunately for fantasy owners, neither of those guys are likely to be available in many leagues, so this is just a nice added bonus for those who were already rostering those two lefties. As for those who own Chapman, he’s certainly less valuable now but I wouldn’t count him out of being a valuable fantasy asset just yet. Unless there’s someone you really covet out there I’d probably hold onto him for the moment rather than dropping him just for the sake of dropping him.
Trevor Rosenthal hits the disabled list