Archive for Bullpen Banter

Bullpen Banter: Mujica May Open As Closer, But Is He Boston’s Best Option?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Red Sox closer Koji Uehara has been battling a hamstring injury for the past few weeks and, with each passing day, it’s becoming abundantly clear that he won’t be ready for Opening Day.  Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal (click here for the article) recently published the following quote from manager John Farrell regarding replacing the closer:

“I’m not saying this is strictly a closer-by-committee,” the manager said. “We would look to close games out with Eddie. But if there are certain situations where we feel like a better matchup is with a lefthander, I’m not opposed to doing that.”

Mujica excelled as the Cardinals closer in 2013, racking up 37 saves, but you have to wonder if he is the best suited option for the role.   Read more

Top 10 Closers Likely To Lose Their Job: #2 Joe Nathan

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

2014 Statistics
35 saves (7 blown saves), 4.81 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 8.38 K/9, 4.50 BB/9

Potential Replacements

  • Joakim Soria
  • Joba Chamberlain
  • Bruce Rondon

Why He’s On The List
Do we really need to go into detail? The only reason Nathan didn’t lose his job last season was because the lack of trustworthy alternatives. With Soria now with the team, as well as healthy, and Rondon working his way back from Tommy John surgery Nathan doesn’t have that luxury. Read more

Bullpen Banter: What Happens In Chicago If David Robertson Misses Time?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The White Sox and Robertson can try to downplay this, but it’s obviously something we need to monitor closely.  Time will tell if it develops into an issue or not, but fantasy owners need to be prepared for the White Sox to look at alternatives.  Luckily they have some options, so let’s take a look: Read more

Bullpen Banter: Is Dellin Betances Losing His Chance At The Yankees’ Closer Role?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There was never any certainty surrounding the Yankees’ closer situation entering the season.  Fantasy owners all wanted to see Dellin Betances handed the job, though the money given to Andrew Miller clouded that outlook.  Their spring performances (through Tuesday) is also helping to further muddy the waters:

Name
Innings
ERA
WHIP
Strikeouts
Walks
Dellin Betances5.05.401.6042
Andrew Miller6.01.500.8382

Betances has allowed a run in each of his past three outings, failing to register a strikeout in the process.  It’s obviously just a blip on the screen and not something we are going to push the panic button about, but it opens the door for the two to share the job at the very least.

That was always the fear from fantasy owners, and where this has always appeared to be headed.  A few days ago Chad Jennings of The Journal News published the following, including a quote from Joe Girardi: Read more

Top 10 Closers Likely To Lose Their Job: #3 Santiago Casilla

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

2014 Stats:
19 SV (4 blown saves), 1.70 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 6.94 K/9, 2.31 BB/9

Potential Replacement

  • Sergio Romo

Why He’s On The List
Casilla stepped in when Romo faltered last season and did a tremendous job. He even earned four postseason saves, but we all know he’s simply not as good as Romo is.

Last season’s success was buoyed by uncharacteristic control (career 3.96 BB/9) and a bit of luck (.211 BABIP, 82.0% strand rate). We can’t anticipate any of those numbers being repeated, meaning there could be a quick fall. Read more

Top 10 Closers Likely To Lose Their Job: #4 Latroy Hawkins

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

2014 Statistics
23 SV (3 blown saves), 3.31 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 5.30 K/9, 2.15 BB/9

Potential Replacements

  • Adam Ottavino
  • Rex Brothers

Why He’s On The List
Hawkins was surprisingly successful last season, but that doesn’t mean he’s a given to replicate it in 2015. We all know the strikeouts are non-existent and there’s little reason to think that it’s going to change.

He also benefited from some luck, given a .275 BABIP and 22.2% line drive rate. How about a 0.50 HR/9 despite a modest 46.7% groundball rate? How about just a 6.5% HR/FB at Coors Field? Read more