Closing Out the Season
This will be the last Closer Report for the 2015 Fantasy Baseball season. Today, we will go over each team and try to figure out if there are any issues that you, the Fantasy owner, need to worry about. We hope this column helped you in your leagues this year and we look forward to once again writing it next March. With that being said, let’s get right to the action.
Arizona Diamondbacks: Brad Ziegler may not be sexy, but he’s getting the job done. There really isn’t anyone to challenge him for the position. Once the Diamondbacks traded away Addison Russell, Ziegler had the job all to himself.
Atlanta Braves: Vizcaino has only had five save opportunities (blown one) since taking over the role. That blown save came in his second inning of work, otherwise he has been very good. The only question may be whether or not Vizcaino goes into next season as the favorite to remain the closer.
Baltimore Orioles: It’s all about Zach Britton.
[caption id="attachment_94052" align="alignright" width="348"] Aroldis Chapman could be in a new uniform next season. Photo Credit: Keith Allison[/caption]
Boston Red Sox: The loss of Koji Uehara (wrist) has left a mish mash at the backend of the bullpen. Jean Machi is the current closer but that may only last as long as his next poor outing. Junichi Tazawa could still be in play.
Chicago Cubs: Hector Rondon should’ve never lost the closing job in the first place, but since being getting his job back he has done nothing to indicate he’s feeling the pressure of a pennant race. Don’t let the signing of Fernando Rodney fool you, it’s Rondon you want for saves.
Chicago White Sox: David Robertson is the closer now and in the future.
Cincinnati Reds: One has to wonder if the Reds will once again look into trading Aroldis Chapman during the offseason, but he still remains one of the best in the game.
Cleveland Indians: Cody Allen may have some ugly outings, but overall he’s been as solid as they come in the ninth inning.
Colorado Rockies: John Axford’s numbers are definitely ugly, 4.08 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, but he still remains the closer in Colorado. It’s not that the Rockies haven’t tried to replace him, they have, but no one else has stuck.
Detroit Tigers: Once the Tigers waived the white flag by trading away David Price and Yoenis Cespedes, they did the smart thing by seeing what they have in Bruce Rondon. Now, Rondon is not always pretty, actually his numbers are horrific (6.12 ERA, 1.56 WHIP), but he has only blown one save and may be able to use the remainder of this season as a stepping stone for next year.
Houston Astros: Luke Gregerson always seems to be the kind of closer you expect to lose his job at any minute, but in the end he keeps the job because he knows how to avoid the thin ice. It’s unlikely that Houston would think about making a change now.
Kansas City Royals: Greg Holland has dealt with arm injuries this year, but nothing that will keep him from closing games.
Los Angeles Angels: How does Huston Street continue to get guys out? I don’t know, but he does.
Los Angeles Dodgers: Who is the only consistent member of the Dodgers bullpen? The closer, Kenley Jansen.
Miami Marlins: It’s never a good thing to have your closer implode (Steve Cishek) but it did allow the Marlins to find out exactly what they have in A.J. Ramos. What they have is a very good closer, who should remain so for the rest of this season and for next year.
Milwaukee Brewers: Yeah, the Brewers probably should’ve tried harder to trade Francisco Rodriguez but what does that matter now, he will remain the team’s closer.
Minnesota Twins: Glen Perkins is once again out with a back injury and it’s fair to say that if not for the Twins being in the playoff race, they probably would’ve already shut him down for the season. Kevin Jepsen has been handling the ninth inning duties in his place.
New York Mets: Jeurys Familia may not have started the season as the Mets closer, but he will finish it as one.
New York Yankees: The Yankees back end of the bullpen with Dellin Betances (8th) and Andrew Miller (9th) may be the best in the game.
Oakland Athletics: Sean Doolittle may be back as the closer after recording a save Monday. The A’s did announce over the weekend that Doolittle was once again an option to close. The question is, does he have the full time job back or will he split it with Drew Pomeranz?
Philadelphia Phillies: We all suspected that Ken Giles would be a good replacement for Jonathan Papelbon. We were right.
Pittsburgh Pirates: Mark Melancon’s numbers say he has been one of the best closers in the game this season.
San Diego Padres: He may not have had a Craig Kimbrel type season, but there is no one about to replace him.
San Francisco Giants: Santiago Casilla is yet another closer we were waiting to be ineffective and lose his job. It never happened.
Seattle Mariners: The Mariners have had a game of musical chairs at closer this season and right now the music has stopped on Tom Wilhelmsen. Will he keep the job for the remainder of the season? Maybe, probably, who knows? Carson Smith could still see a save or two.
St. Louis Cardinals: Outside of those games versus the Pirates, Rosenthal has been as good as anyone this season.
Tampa Bay Rays: Brad Boxberger was able to keep the job even with the return of Jake McGee earlier this year. With McGee still out with a knee injury, there is little reason to believe that Boxberger won’t continue to rack up saves.
Texas Rangers: Shawn Tolleson has been much better than advertised since taking over the ninth inning job in Texas. Could he keep the role next season?
Toronto Blue Jays: It’s not all that common that you see a rookie close for a contending team but that’s just how good Roberto Osuna has been.
Washington Nationals: While it’s true that Washington didn’t need him, Jonathan Papelbon is not about to be replaced at closer.
As always feel free to follow me on Twitter and ask any questions you like, @georgekurtz
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