h2h Corner ~ the Closer Carousel

As Kevin Nealon said, “yeah, lot of pressure. You gotta rise above it. You gotta harness in the good energy, block out the bad. Harness. Energy. Block. Bad. Feel the flow, Happy. Feel it. It’s circular. It’s like a carousel. You pay the quarter, you get on the horse. It goes up and down and around. Circular. Circle. With the music. The flow… all good things.”

It is no different than with a majority of major league closers. Sure some are like violent roller coasters (Armando Benitez) and some are like the teacups (Mariano Rivera), but most are in the muddy middle. Thus introduces your weekly reliever mash-up.

Relievers you should be jumping on (in order):

Colorado Rockies – Who had June 29 as the first date Huston Street would record a save? Well consider yourself Biff-ified, as Street got the save last night and should control the job with Manny Corpas struggling. I wouldn’t drop Corpas just yet, but a few more injury-free outings and Street will have a stranglehold on the position.

Milwaukee Brewers – I’ve been on record saying that at some point Trevor Hoffman will reclaim the closers role. I don’t think it will necessarily be current closer John Axford’s failing. Rather, I think the team will continue to fall out of contention and the Brewers will help Hoffman chase save 600 – it’ll sell a few tickets anyway. Furthermore, while Axford is 7-7 in save opportunities, he hasn’t been 100% prefect as he has allowed a run in three of those outings. Meanwhile, Hoffman hasn’t allowed a run in his last seven appearances. I don’t foresee the switch coming anytime soon, but at some point it is likely the two will at least share the closer’s role so Hoffman can get to 600.

Arizona Diamondbacks – Everyone who follows closers knows the drill with the DBacks. Chad Qualls was terrible in the role, Aaron Heilman is currently terrible in the role, and newly acquired Sam Demel has been good. Eventually the Diamondbacks will want to show they got value for Conor Jackson and make Demel the full time closer. Heilman has very fleeting value, I’d rather have Demel.

Baltimore Orioles – It looks like Michael Gonzalez will be returning from the 60-day DL sometime in the next two weeks. Does that spell the end of value for Alfredo Simon? Not quite. According to Dan Connolly at the Baltimore Sun, Alfredo Simon might not lose the closing duties upon Michael Gonzalez’s return. In fact, “there is no mandate to have Gonzalez close just because that was what he was signed to do.” That said, Simon is not a great pitcher and will definitely stumble along the way. I imagine Gonzalez will collect all lefty-heavy saves immediately upon return and take over the job completely once Simon struggles. Basically, the Orioles have to get some return on their investment in Gonzalez. The best case is for him to pitch well and become trade bait. He is worth virtually nothing as a loogy.

If you need to grab a reliever in a pinch, check out the below bullpen hierarchies.

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All stats as of June 29.

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6 responses to this post.

  1. On another note…
    Aaron Hill has until about a week after the All-Star before not only being dropped from my fantasy roster, but also being added to my “dead to me” list. I have him in my utility spot and he’s killing me.
    Especially with guys like Hunter Pence, Chone Figgans, Lance Berkman, and Adam LaRoche available.
    What do you think? Any good insights for me?

    Reply

  2. Posted by Albert Lang on June 30, 2010 at 6:05 pm

    I believe Hill will improve.

    However there is no reason to wait for that with that kind of talent on the wire. I’d grab Berkman now, unless you need steals in which case I’d go after Figgins

    Reply

  3. Thanks for your help. I was planning on picking up Berkman, for thanks for the reassurance.
    How about Buster Posey? Is it time to
    drop him yet?
    Guys like Olivo are available….

    Reply

  4. Posted by Albert Lang on June 30, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    in a non-keeper league i dont see much value in Posey. Signs are that Bengie MOlina just got traded, which will actually hurt Posey’s value as he will play less (as a full time catcher) and wear down easier.

    I’d rather have Olivo, Napoli, etc.

    Reply

  5. Who would you rather have, Mark Reynolds or Lance Berkman, at your Utility spot for the rest of the season?

    Reply

  6. Posted by Albert Lang on July 1, 2010 at 11:56 am

    It really depends. Renyolds has more HR/SB upside. Berkman will not kill your average. RBIs should be comparable. Reynolds will likely score more runs.

    If you arent worried about AVG then Reynolds.

    Reply

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