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August 22, 2013

Bullpen Report

Farquhar Rises to the Top

by Mike Gianella


Welcome to another installment of The Bullpen Report. As a reminder, closers are rated in five tiers from best to worst. The tiers are a combination of my opinion of a pitcher’s ability, the likelihood that he will pick up saves, and his security in the job. For example, a pitcher in the third tier might have better skills than a pitcher in the second tier, but if the third-tier pitcher is new to the job or has blown a couple of saves in the last week this factors into the ranking as well.

Tier 1 – Money in the Bank

Moving a recent closer convert like Farquhar to the top tier is risky business, but I like what I have seen so far. Farquhar blew a save against the Rays on August 14; otherwise, he has been dynamite since the Mariners put him into ninth inning duty. Ignore Farquhar’s first half numbers; he put up a BABIP well over .400 with men on base and was often used in long relief situations, when the team “sacrificed” him to save the rest of the bullpen. He’s a top-tier option when he is on.

Cishek is another reliever I never thought I’d put in the top tier. However, Cishek has allowed runs in two outings out of 31 since June 8. The fear of Cishek not accumulating saves has proven to be unfounded; since June 8, Cishek has 22 saves. The home park helps, but that’s a plus for Cishek in fantasy, not something that needs to be adjusted for.

Tier 2 – Solid and Reliable

I rhapsodized last week about how Benoit belongs in the top tier, but three outings in a row with no strikeouts make me rethink this and Benoit moves down a notch. Remember, being in Tier 2 isn’t a condemnation, and Benoit should still start in all formats. I’m simply taking him out of the elite tier… for now.

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around ... (08/22)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Bullpen Report: Mo Mov... (08/15)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Bullpen Report: Oh, Br... (08/29)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: Week... (08/22)

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