You should have consider yourself lucky if your fantasy team hasnâ€™t had a closer suffer a ridiculous blow up. Jobs arenâ€™t changing hands yet, but there are a few handcuffs that fantasy GMs should be ready to pounce on…assuming they havenâ€™t already.
Who would have thought Jim Johnson would have had one of the more reliable opening weeks? No, seriously, who would have thought? Johnson has given up two hits and a walk in 2 â…” while going 2-2 in save opportunities. He has a reasonably firm grasp on the closing job. Itâ€™s safe to cut Kevin Gregg or Matt Lindstrom loose…for now.
Alfredo Aceves is apparently the guy in Boston. Aceves blew up in dramatic fashion, but converted his last save attempt with a perfect inning against the Blue Jays. Mark Melancon has two bad outings under his belt and the Red Sox appear to have soured on the idea of Melancon as a closer. Apparently saving games in Houston isn’t really real closing experience. Franklin Morales looks like the dark horse candidate in Boston. He has three Kâ€™s in 2 â…” innings of work.
Clevelandâ€™s Chris Perez appears to be on a short leash after a fantastic blow up on Opening Day. Also, was Perez always this fat? Did baseball run out of fat closers and Chris Perez draw the short straw? Somewhere Antonio Alfonseca is stroking his beard with his six-fingered hand and muttering, “Well done, son. Well done.” Vinnie Pestano is the obvious handcuff and there really isnâ€™t an obvious dark horse.
Kansas City closer Jonathan Broxton appeared to be on solid footing when he converted his first save by striking out the side against the Angels, but he suffered a mini-blow up against the Aâ€™s on Wednesday. The rally started with an Alcides Escobar error, but Broxton walked two before giving up a RBI ground out to tie the game. It sounds like Broxton still has some rope, but Greg Holland is the post-hype handcuff.
Fernando Rodney has converted three saves in three chances for Tampa Bay. Two of them were one-out, vulture saves, but hey, cheap saves. Donâ€™t fall too in love with Rodney. He will give up five runs in â…“ of an inning and roast your ratios. Kyle Farnsworth will be back in a little over a month. Enjoy the saves while they last.
Toronto’s Sergio Santos has a blow up under his belt, but converted his last save opportunity. He will be away from the team from Thursday to Saturday due to the birth of his child, so make sure to get Francisco Cordero in your lineup. He should get 9th inning duties while Santos is gone and he might nick a save or two.
Mets closer Frank Francisco is still dealing with swelling in his knee, but it doesnâ€™t sound like heâ€™s going to miss any time. Francisco is 3-3 in save opportunities so far. Jon Rauch is the best bet as a handcuff option, but Miguel Batistaâ€™s name has also been mentioned should Francisco need a trip to the DL.
Remember when Drew Storen was only going to be out for a few weeks? Yeah, Spring Training was fun, wasnâ€™t it? Storen had a â€œminorâ€ procedure on his elbow on Wednesday to remove bone chips from his elbow. A time table hasnâ€™t been released, but it appears heâ€™ll be out until the All-Star break. Brad Lidge and Henry Rodriguez are the committee until someone steps up and takes the job. Lidge has a save and four Kâ€™s in two appearances so far. Rodriguez has recorded seven outs in three appearances. Six of the seven outs have been recorded via the strikeout. Heâ€™s also given up a hit, two walks and an unearned run. Itâ€™s pretty much a dead heat for now, but it does sound like itâ€™s Rodriguezâ€™ job to lose at this point.
Cubs closer Carlos Marmol looks as shaky as ever. Marmol earned a â…“ of an inning vulture save, but suffered two blowups and has a 2:4 K:BB ratio. The Cubs really arenâ€™t going anywhere, so Marmolâ€™s job doesnâ€™t appear in jeopardy unless he needs to be shut down with a shoulder/elbow issue. Kerry Wood is the likely handcuff and Rafael Dolis is the darkhorse candidate.