2014 Fantasy Baseball: The Week 22 Closer Report
Welcome to another addition of the Closer Report here at the Fantasy Fix. For Week 22, we see a committee emerge where one hadn’t existed, but otherwise things are slowing down considerably. We also draw closer to the Sept 1 and the roster explosion that comes with that date. Follow along to see where we are today.
Remember, we’ve moved the Fantasy Fix Closer Report Chart to its full time home right here.
Also, my look at the 2015 closers is still here.
As always, feel free to ask a question in the comments below or shoot me a note on Twitter.
Boston Red Sox
While I’ve speculated that the Red Sox might put Edward Mujica into the closer’s role in 2015 should they choose not to re-sign Koji Uehara. I asked Jason Mastrodonato (Red Sox beat writer for MassLive.com /The Springfield Republican) if they Sox might be content with Mujica. Mastrodonato had posited that Sergio Romo or David Robertson would be attractive to Boston next year. His response:
.@chrisgarosi Doubtful, because they don’t have any other options if he fails. He and Taz are valuable set-up guys, but they need a closer.
— Jason Mastrodonato (@JMastrodonato) August 29, 2014
And Jason certainly knows more than I do. He has a nice piece on the Red Sox bullpen here and I commend it for your reading pleasure. He certainly lays out a case that the Sox may spend and spend big on the pen. I still think they go cheap (and I can’t see them spending on Romo who has similar velocity concerns to those that let Papelbon walk out of Boston), but the argument to do otherwise is compelling.
The Red Sox have said they have no plans to shut Uehara down this year, so he may just get more time off which could lead to more save opportunities for Mujica.
Eric O’Flaherty picked up the first save of his MLB career earlier this week. It certainly looks like the A’s are going to roll with O’Flaherty as the closer for the short term. However, I don’t see how he can survive long term in the role. He has controlled lefties throughout his career (.243 wOBA against), but righties have done relatively well against him (.309 wOBA in his career).
Sean Doolittle is feeling better, but hasn’t started baseball activities. It’s looking more and more like he’ll miss the rest of the regular season.
San Francisco Giants
Well, it looks like the Giants are moving back to a committee at the closer’s spot. As Alex Pavlovic noted, manager Bruce Bochy had considered using current closer Santiago Casilla in the eighth inning early this week, but stuck with Sergio Romo due to matchups. So, we now go back to a two (or perhaps three) headed monster with Santiago Casilla and Sergio Romo heading the committee and Jeremy Affeldt lurking behind those two.
2014 Closer – The current closer
Handcuff Option – This is the guy who I believe will step into the closer role if the current closer loses his job.
Other Option – Another arm in the pen who could close if the manager chooses to go a different route. And to clarify – this may be the lefty specialist who steps in for match up saves along the way.
Dark Horse Option – If all hell breaks loose in the pen, this guy could get a shot this year.
2015 Closer – This guy should be in the closer’s role on Opening Day 2014.
And if you are looking for the chart, we’ve moved it to its permanent home right here. Updates will be made daily so be sure to check back each day to see any movement.
Thanks as always for reading.