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Major league closers are constantly changing and there’s always being discussed. So let’s do that. WTF, Putz is injured? Who’s backing up Gagne? Who’s setting up Huston Street? Who is Jason Grilli? Chad Cordero is injured and Rauch is closing, not or yacht? And do I need to know any of these things? Yes, no, no, yes, no and yes. So here’s a look at the closers that need to be watched for this week.

JJ Putz is injured and I tried to warn people against taking the first closer off the board (or even a top closer). Putz seemed to pull something (ribcage, if you must know). Mark Lowe‘s now closing for the Mariners. This might get worse before Putz gets better, so look to Sean Green (not the Jew that retired) or Eric O’Flaherty in case Lowe falters.

Eric Gagne‘s on his way out. He was ‘roided and now, as Thing 1 and Thing 2 from Flavor of Love would say, he has been exposed. As I said in the comments on this post, “I just choose between the three (Mota, Riske, Turnbow) in one ten team league and I went with Riske. Seems to be the safest even if he’s not the one called. It’s tough though because Riske is probably the best, Turnbow’s got the longest history there and they’ve seen him close before (though it was scary at times) and Mota’s supposedly the set-up man. We’ll see what cream of the crap rises up. My guess for saves would be Turnbow, Riske then Mota, but I couldn’t afford the Turnbow WHIP hit in the league I picked him up.” Hey, I’ve been quoted! I am an expert! Riske was nasty to the Cubs yesterday. I think you have to grab him. But I still wouldn’t be surprised to see Mota or Turnbow grab some saves. You must monitor Gagne. He’s a timebomb.

Brandon Lyon was lights out the other night against the Reds. The Reds strikeout more than that kid from “The Last American Virgin” who drove the girl for an abortion then was dumped. I have Brandon Lyon on one team and I’m hoping Tony Pena is dropped so I can handcuff him.

Chad Cordero handing off the closer duties to Jon Rauch…. For one game, supposedly. Chad Cordero’s a heffin’ liar. Cordero is going on the DL. Today? Tomorrow? Next week? I don’t know, but it’s happening. If you order a “stiff shoulder,” you lose the closing job for a period of time.  I’m doubtful Rauch is available in any of your leagues, and, if he is, I don’t think your league is very competitive.

Huston Street looks like a man that is going to lose his job. I saw it happen with Valverde one year. Happened to Fuentes last year. My gut says Street is going to be figuring things out in the 6th inning soon. With that said, do you really want to pick up Alan Embree, Keith Foulke or Joey Devine? Well, Alan Embree was figuring things out in the 6th inning yesterday and gave up a home run to Ortiz. Keith Foulke will never be on one of my teams. Devine? He’s yet to proven himself in the majors. With the A’s being dreadful this year, you might have to avoid this whole mess.

Matt Capps and Damaso Marte both got hit the other day, but I think Capps has great job security. So why mention him? Capps was walking hitters (something he rarely did last year) the other night. I think Capps would have to be injured to lose this job. Walks could be a sign that he’s hiding an injury. Hopefully, he’s not.

Kerry Wood is the closer while Carlos Marmol is the setup man. Kerry Wood looked like crap. Marmol cruised through four hitters, striking out three. To be continued.

CJ Wilson hasn’t had any problems yet this year. I still see ‘perts grabbing Kazuo Fukumori and Joaquin Benoit. As of right now, I see no reason to handcuff Wilson.

Tom Gordon is being dropped in some leagues of mine. I wouldn’t do this just yet, because of Lidge’s uncertainty, but I would put Gordon on my bench until further notice.

17 Responses

  1. Pingback: Baseball News Aggregator » Closers Look

  2. Cory says:
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    amen on CJ Wilson. Karabell had him as his last choice for a closer. Wilson has done nothing wrong thus far.

    Batista just picked up the save. The announcer said it was his “throw day” so they just threw him out there to close. He’s still tentatively scheduled to start. He did well though.

  3. Grey

    Grey says:
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    What a joke that Batista picked up the save with Sean Green setting him up. Mark Lowe wasn’t unavailable but you’d think they’d let Green close. Man, that could’ve turned out poorly with Batista closing.

  4. Seattle announced that they’ll go “closer by committee” before the ballgame since Putz’s latest medical review brought good news. The original thought was that he could miss 1-2+ months, but the injury isn’t that bad and it looks like he could come back after the 15-day stint on the DL. Batista was out there today, as noted above, because he was working in the bullpen and has experience closing. He will still make his next start. Seattle did the same type of thing last year with Batista.

    I still believe Lowe will get the bulk of save opportunities, he definately fits the profile better than the other guys and the consensus is that he’ll likely take over for Putz at some point in his career. Hard to say, though. Manager McLaren certainly has his own way of doing things.

    BBT Jon’s last blog post..Closer By Committee

  5. Grey

    Grey says:
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    I heard the close-by-committee thing and if that’s true why didn’t they go to Green who is supposedly in that committee? Cause it was Batista’s throw day? Really stupid move.

  6. What makes that a stupid move? Green is one of the guys considered in the committee, but he along with Ryan Rowland-Smith and Cha Seung Baek were the only ones available in the bullpen. Baek is the long reliever and is in no way qualified for setup duty and RRS is still a little iffy too. I think the plan was to let Green get the 2-inning save, but they pulled him when he started getting a little wild.

    I didn’t mind them letting Batista get the save. He’s done it with some success in the past and he helped spare a paper-thin bullpen.

    BBT Jon’s last blog post..Series Preview: M’s at Orioles 4/4-4/7

  7. Grey

    Grey says:
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    On one hand, you say Green’s in the committee. On the other, you put him in the 8th then yank him in the 9th. The Batista thing worked out okay, but it could have got ugly. If Green’s going to gain confidence, why not let him get the save? He walks someone then they give him the hook? It’s a bad move.

  8. Green is in the “committee” by default. He is not well suited for the closer’s role. He is a pitch-to-contact sinkerballer, not exactly the guy you want. That is the reason Mark Lowe should get most of the reps.

    The strategy in Wednesday’s ballgame didn’t bother me considering the situation. Putz went down out of nowhere, Lowe and O’Flaherty were unavailable, Rhodes and Morrow are not ready for MLB action.

    BBT Jon’s last blog post..Series Preview: M’s at Orioles 4/4-4/7

  9. Steve says:
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    Guys – not quite closer-related but my search for SP-eligible middle relievers continues. To that end, any thoughts on the Royals’ Leo Nunez? Is he the eighth-inning guy?

  10. Leo Nunez is a starting pitcher with no minor league options who can’t crack the Royals staff.

    I vote no on him. Not sure whomelse, though, in the SP-eligible RP pool is better….

  11. Steve says:
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    Not a lot to choose from:
    Nunez
    Jorge Sosa
    Jamey Wright
    Matt Albers
    Taylor Bucholz (think Grey has disparaged him already!)
    Micah Bowie
    Lenny Di Nardo

    :-(

  12. Grey

    Grey says:
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    In that group Bucholz doesn’t look so bad….

    I’d grab Sosa from that group, might get some vulture wins and he might get a start or two with Pedro DL-ed.

  13. Steve says:
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    Yeah – really just looking for guys to slot in at SP that won’t kill me in ERA or WHIP. My league counts Holds and I have those pretty well covered with Bell, Broxton, Neshek, Speier and Riske.

  14. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Those are pretty bad choices for a SP, but I’d still go with Sosa then Buchholz.

  15. Steve says:
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    A shallow group, to be sure.

  16. Steve says:
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    What chance Villanueva moves back to the Brewers pen at some stage? Kuo from the Dodgers was another possibility but he has mysteriously lost his RP eligibility in Yahoo…

  17. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Depends on Bush, Suppan, Sheets, Gallardo and Parra. They need to make room soon for Gallardo. I’d put the odds of the Brewers staff right now at Parra to pen 2-1, Bush losing his rotation spot 3-1, Villanueva to pen 4-1, Sheets injured 4-1, Gallardo having a setback 8-1, something happening to Suppan 20-1.

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