Fantasy Baseball: Week 23 Closer Report

Senior Fantasy Baseball Expert Shawn Childs takes a look at each team’s bullpen to help you find the next closer to provide saves. Get ready to DOMINATE!

Arizona Diamondbacks

Over his last five games, Brad Boxberger allowed three runs and eight baserunners over five innings with one win, three saves, one blown save, and seven Ks. Boxberger is 29-for-35 in save conversions, but he does have risk with the long ball (eight HRs over 45.2 innings). Archie Bradley improved his scoreless run to six innings with eight Ks. Yoshihisa Hirano has a 1.04 ERA over 8.2 innings in August with four Ks.

Atlanta Braves

A.J. Minter hasn’t picked up a save since August 15th. Over the last week, he pitched two shutout innings while allowing four baserunners with two Ks. Minter has a 2.70 ERA and 1.03 WHIP over his last 23.1 innings with four walks and 25 Ks leading to nine saves in 11 tries. Dan Winkler pitched 9.2 shutout innings in August with 11 Ks. Brad Brach hasn’t allowed a run or hit over his last 3.1 innings with four walks and three Ks.

Baltimore Orioles

Since August 4th, Mychal Givens posted a 2.35 ERA and 0.78 WHIP over 7.2 innings with one walk and eight Ks while picking up three saves in four chances. On the year, Givens still has failure in his ERA (4.52) and WHIP (1.39). Paul Fry pitched better over his last seven games (two runs over 7.1 innings with nine Ks) to move up the depth chart in the Orioles’ bullpen. Ryan Meisinger struggled over his last three games (three runs and eight baserunners over 3.2 innings with five Ks) while pitching well at AAA in 2018 (2.28 ERA over 27 innings with 36 Ks).

Boston Red Sox

Craig Kimbrel needs to find his form in September and October if the Red Sox are going to win the World Series. He’s allowed a run or more in six of his last 11 games, which led to three blown saves in nine opportunities while delivering losing value in his ERA (5.56) and WHIP (1.59). Kimbrel has been successful in 37 of his 42 saves chances. Matt Barnes lost his way over his last nine games (10 runs, 16 baserunners, and four home runs over 8.1 innings) after looking like a shining star in the bullpen heading into August (2.30 ERA over 47 innings with 74 Ks). Joe Kelly extended his shutout streak to 5.2 innings with five Ks.

Chicago Cubs

Saves have been tough to come by in the windy city over the last two weeks of August. Pedro Strop allowed one run over his last four innings with two Ks while blowing his last save try, which came on June 16th. Pedro has a 2.63 ERA over his last 13.2 innings with eight saves in ten chances. Carl Edwards hasn’t allowed a run over his last 7.2 innings with five walks and three Ks. Steve Cishek saw his 12.2-inning scoreless run end on August 27th when he allowed a home run to the Mets.

Chicago White Sox

Jace Fry has been impressive over his last eight games (no runs over eight innings with one walk, 13 Ks, and two saves). He looks poised to be the White Sox closer going forward. Xavier Cedeno has 1.17 ERA over his last 7.2 innings with eight Ks. Thyago Vieira pitched better over his last five appearances (two runs over 4.1 innings with two Ks).

Cincinnati Reds

Over the last two games, Raisel Iglesias allowed two runs and three baserunners over 1.2 innings with one Ks leading to a loss and a blown save. Iglesias is 24-for-28 in save conversions with success in his ERA (2.47) and WHIP (1.03). Jared Hughes fell on his face in his last three games (five runs, five baserunners, and two home runs over two innings), which was probably long overdue. David Hernandez has a 3.72 ERA in August with nine Ks over 9.2 innings.

Cleveland Indians

Just when a Fantasy owners start to feel confident with the direction of Cody Allen, he makes a trip to the outhouse to drop some bad stats on Fantasy teams. Over his last three games, Allen gave up three runs, seven baserunners, and two home runs over two innings while blowing his fourth save in 29 chances. Brad Hand walked too many batters (5) over his last seven innings, but he didn’t allow a run over seven innings with 11 Ks and two saves. Hand has 29 saves in 2018 over 34 opportunities. Andrew Miller has a 3.18 ERA and seven Ks over his last 5.2 innings since coming off the DL.

Colorado Rockies

After a rough three weeks after the All-Star break (13.50 ERA over 8.2 innings), Wade Davis cleaned up his act over his last seven games (no runs over seven innings with one walk, nine Ks, and four saves). Davis is 36-for-42 in save conversions with a weakness in his ERA (4.80). Adam Ottavino drilled Fantasy owners in his last two games when he allowed four runs and seven baserunners over 1.2 innings. His four walks over this span could be a sign of an underlying injury. Seung Hwan Oh has a 0.89 ERA over his last 20.1 innings with 20 Ks.

Detroit Tigers

Over the last week, Shane Greene allowed two runs and five baserunners over one inning with two Ks and one blown save. Greene has four blown saves in 31 chances. Joe Jimenez continues to pitch well below his expected value. Over the last month, Jimenez has a 12.96 ERA and 2.16 WHIP over 8.1 innings with seven walks and nine Ks. Victor Alcantara blew up on August 22nd (four runs, four baserunners, and two home runs) against the Cubs. Over his last 12.2 innings in the majors, Alcantara has a 2.84 ERA and 12 Ks over 12.2 innings.

Houston Astros

The Astros want Roberto Osuna to pitch in the 9th inning. He has two saves in his last four games, but Osuna has allowed a run in three of his last seven outings (3.86 ERA over seven innings with nine Ks). Hector Rondon has two holds in his last three games while improving his shutout streak to five innings with three Ks. Since the beginning of June, Rondon has a 2.48 ERA over 29 innings with 33 Ks while converting 14 of his 17 saves. Collin McHugh struggled in three of his last five games (five runs and 12 baserunners over five innings).

Kansas City Royals

Wily Peralta has only pitched one shutout inning with two baserunners over the last ten days. He improved his scoreless streak to four innings with four Ks while picking up a win and two saves over his span. Peralta hasn’t blown a save in his eight tries. Tim Hill has a 1.13 ERA over his last eight innings with eight Ks. Over his first four games in the majors, Jake Newberry allowed two runs and seven baserunners over 4.2 innings with four Ks.

Los Angeles Angels

Justin Anderson struggled over his last four games (five runs and eight baserunners over 3.1 innings with three Ks). His regression in walks (6) over this stretch will keep him well away from the ninth inning. Blake Parker has a 1.17 ERA over his last 7.2 innings with seven Ks and two saves. For having the closing job for most of the season, Parker only has 12 saves in 15 tries. Cam Bedrosian pitched two shutout innings over the last week with one K.

Los Angeles Dodgers

There has to be something still wrong with Kenley Jansen since his heart issue. Over first four games back in the mound, he’s allowed seven runs, 11 baserunners, and four home runs over four innings with five Ks leading to two blown saves and one loss. Jansen is 34-for-36 in save conversions. Kenta Maeda gave up one run over his four innings in the bullpen with six Ks. Scott Alexander has a 1.80 ERA over his last five innings with two Ks.

Miami Marlins

Over his last five games with a closing opportunity, Drew Steckenrider has a 3.86 ERA over 4.2 innings with six Ks, one save, and one blown save. Kyle Barraclough threw the ball better in his last two games (no runs over two innings with one K) after returning from the DL. Adam Conley pitched well over his last six games (five shutout innings with two Ks.


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Milwaukee Brewers

Josh Hader has a 1.00 ERA over his last nine innings with no walks and 12 Ks. Over this span, he allowed one hit while converting both save chances. Hader has been successful ten of 13 save chances on the year. Jeremy Jeffress has three saves and one blown save over his last four games with one run allowed over 4.1 innings with four Ks. Joakim Soria returned from the DL over the last week. He pitched 2.2 shutout innings with no walks and five Ks to remain in the mix for saves. The Brewers will rotate closing arms going forward.

Minnesota Twins

Over his last five games, Trevor Hildenberger has a 1.59 ERA over 5.2 innings with four Ks and three saves. His ERA (4.28) for the season remains out of line after getting drilled in his first four games in August (nine runs and 11 baserunners over 3.2 innings). Taylor Rogers extended his shutout streak to 12 innings with one walk, 15 Ks, and two saves. Trevor May has a 1.69 ERA over his last 10.2 innings with 15 Ks.

New York Mets

Robert Gsellman pitched great over his last 9.2 shutout innings leading to eight Ks and three saves. Gsellman now has eight saves in 13 chances while getting his ERA (3.57) and WHIP (1.20) in a more favorable area. Drew Smith looks closer-worthy over his last 11.1 innings (one run and ten baserunners with ten Ks). Jerry Blevins has a 1.86 ERA over his last 9.2 innings with ten Ks.

New York Yankees

Dellin Betances picked up a win and a save in his last two games after Aroldis Chapman landed on the DL with a knee issue. Betances has been electric over his last 15.1 innings (two walks and 27 Ks with a 0.59 ERA). David Robertson hasn’t allowed a run in August over 9.2 innings with ten Ks while picking up two saves over the last two weeks. He’ll compete with Betances for saves for the Yankees going forward. Zach Britton allowed one run over his last 5.2 innings with no walks, three Ks, and one save.

Oakland A’s

Over the last month or so, Blake Treinen has 0.56 ERA over 16 innings with two walks, 25 Ks, and nine saves. Treinen is 33-for-37 in save conversions. Jeurys Familia hasn’t allowed a run over his last 7.2 innings with one walk and 11 Ks. Fernando Rodney improved his scoreless run to 14 innings with 15 baserunners and 15 Ks.

Philadelphia Phillies

Seranthony Dominguez struggled in two of his last three games (five runs and five baserunners over his last 2.1 innings with three Ks), which led to a pair of losses and one blown save. Dominguez now has a 9.00 ERA in August over eight innings with one walk and 11 Ks while converting only three of his six saves putting the closing job at risk. Seranthony has four failed saves in 18 chances on the year. Pat Neshek struggled in two of his last three games (two runs and three baserunners over 2.1 innings with two Ks). Hector Neris has been a much better pitcher since returning for his spin-dry at AAA. Over his last eight games, Neris pitched 7.1 shutout innings with one walk and 16 Ks.

Pittsburgh Pirates

Felipe Vazquez hasn’t allowed a run in August over 9.1 innings with eight Ks and three saves. Vazquez has been successful in 27 of his 31 saves. Keone Kela tossed five shutout innings in his last five games with 11 Ks. Kyle Crick pitched poorly over his ten games in August (5.19 ERA over 8.2 innings with ten Ks), which wasn’t helped by throwing three wild pitches and hitting five batters.

San Diego Padres

Earlier in the season, someone asked about the upside of Kirby Yates closing. I doubted his success in the 9th due to a history of allowing home runs in the majors (12 over 56.2 innings in 2017). After a great year, Yates started to show his true closing colors over the last two week when he allowed four runs over 4.1 innings with three coming via home runs. Over this span, Kirby has 8.31 ERA with three losses, two saves, and one blown save. Craig Stammen hasn’t allowed a run over his last 6.2 innings with five Ks. Jose Castillo has a 1.80 ERA over his last five innings with eight Ks.

San Francisco Giants

Will Smith extended his shutout streak to 6.2 innings with eight Ks while converting four of five save tries. Smith has three blown saves in 14 chances with an elite ERA (1.80) and production in Ks (61 over 45 innings). Mark Melancon picked up the last two saves in San Fran. Over his eight games in August, Melancon has a 1.29 ERA and 1.57 WHIP over seven innings with six Ks. I’m not sure I trust his arm in the 9th for the remainder of the season. Over his five games back in the back in the majors after a DL stint, Hunter Strickland has a 3.60 ERA over five innings with two Ks.

Seattle Mariners

With some of the top arms in the AL having some injuries in August, Edwin Diaz may be on his way to a Cy Young winning season. He has a save in 13 of his last 14 appearances with a 1.29 ERA, one walk, and 26 Ks over 14 innings. Diaz is 50-for-54 in save conversion with 108 Ks in 64 innings. Alex Colome allowed two runs over his last 24 innings with 27 Ks. Zach Duke hasn’t allowed a run over his last five innings with one K.

St. Louis Cardinals

Over the last two weeks, Bud Norris didn’t give up a run over six innings with four Ks and six saves. Norris is 28-for-32 in save tries. Jordan Hick allowed three runs and 14 baserunners over his last 4.2 innings with seven Ks and one save. His recent slide is due to fade in his command (seven walks). Carlos Martinez pitched three shutout innings over his last two games with three Ks and a win. The Cardinals will keep him in the bullpen for the rest of the year.

Tampa Bay Rays

Sergio Romo extended his scoreless streak to 7.1 innings with two walks, eight Ks, and five saves. Over his last 40 games, Romo has a 1.89 ERA and 0.95 WHIP with 37 Ks over 38 innings while being successful in 18 of his 22 saves. Jose Alvarado has a 1.80 ERA over ten innings in August with one walk and 15 Ks. Diego Castillo hasn’t allowed a run over his last ten innings with eight Ks.

Texas Rangers

Over the last month, Jose Leclerc threw 12 shutout innings with three hits, three walks, and 19 Ks while converting all seven of his saves. Cory Gearrin has a 1.54 ERA over his last 11.2 innings with ten Ks. Chris Martin threw the ball better over his last five games (one run over five innings with no walks and six saves.

Toronto Blue Jays

Ken Giles has a save in each of his last five appearances. Over the period, he allowed one run over five innings with one walk and six Ks. Giles still doesn’t have a blown save in his 18 chances in 2018. Ryan Tepera didn’t allow a run over his last 5.2 innings with three walks and three Ks. Tyler Clippard struggled on August 26th (three runs and three baserunners over one-third of an inning), which ended his 6.1-inning shutout run.

Washington Nationals

Greg Holland picked up his first save in 2018 on August 28th, which is pretty expensive when considering his $14 million contract. Over his last 12 games, Holland has 0.93 ERA over 9.2 innings with three walks and 11 Ks. The 9th inning should be his job to lose until Sean Doolittle returns. Doolittle is getting closer to a rehab assignment, which puts him on track to return to the majors at the end of next week. Justin Miller struggled over his last 9.2 innings (5.59 ERA with six Ks). Koda Glover allowed one run over his last 2.2 innings with four walks and two Ks.


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Shawn Childs
About Shawn Childs 407 Articles
Shawn Childs has been a high stakes Fantasy baseball and football player since 2004 where he had success in his first season (three titles and $25,000 in winnings). In early years of the high stakes market in Fantasy baseball, he was ahead of the curve in player evaluation, draft value, and free agent bidding setting up four top-five finishes in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. He has four AL-only Auction titles, one NL-only title, and five Main Event titles plus an overall title in 2012 at RTFBC (netted $10,000). This success led to an induction into the NFBC Baseball Hall of Fame. His success in the high stakes market led to a career in providing Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Football content. On the football side, he’s competed and won in all different formats – auctions, draft championship, main events, and high-dollar leagues. He won 2nd place overall in the 2014 Most Accurate Salary Cap Expert contest at FantasyPros.As a dual-sport player, it was natural to transition to the daily games where he is a “swing for the fences type of guy.” Childs has appeared in one FanDuel NFL Live Final and one DraftKings NFL Live Final, a season-ending tournament which led to a couple of chances to win over $1,000,000.