Bullpen Report: June 11, 2013

Brandon League was very Brandon League last night, giving up four runs en route to his fourth blown save and third loss of the season. The best thing you can say about League’s ERA this year (6.00) is that it’s an even number. The (bad) luck card isn’t usable in this situation either as League’s FIP is 5.15, and with a mere 4.88 K/9, League doesn’t even net your fantasy team any strikeouts. It shouldn’t have taken this long, but finally with all of that said, it appears that Mattingly has named Kenley Jansen his closer.

If you know of a paid league that still has Kenley Jansen available on the wire, please invite me next year. It goes without say that Jansen must be owned and with his strikeout ability, he could be one of the better closers from here on out if he holds onto the job all year. League’s salary or whatever he was doing to hold onto the job for so long with a significant better option on the team could theoretically get him the job back at some point again this season but right now he seems so broken that I have confidence that Jansen runs away with it all year.

Giancarlo Stanton hit a go-ahead home run in the bottom of the eighth for the Marlins today off of Jim Henderson giving the fish the rare save opportunity that has been so elusive for them this year. Steve Cishek received said opportunity and did his job, pitching a 1-2-3 inning for his seventh save of the year. As far as closers are concerned, Steve Cishek finishing games in Miami might be the least attractive option in fantasy baseball, but saves are saves are saves, and for the moment it remains Cishek’s job in Miami.

Meanwhile, for Henderson it was his second blown save of the year as he pitched in his second appearance since returning from the DL. In place of Henderson, Francisco Rodriguez is a perfect 4-4 on save opportunities, and he might not give the job back. Although his 3.45 FIP isn’t bad it’s still a far cry from Henderson who, including tonight’s rough outing is still pitching to a 1.66/1.96/2.61 ERA/FIP/xFIP line. I imagine Roenicke would have a quick leash on K-Rod and though he may not be the best reliever on the team, it seems like it’s his job to lose.

• It wasn’t perfect but Jim Johnson picked up his 23rd save of the season. Since his blow up on May 26th, Johnson has now converted all eight of the save chances he has received, only giving up one run in 7.1 innings pitched. Johnson will have his share of blips, but for the most part he consistently gets the job done with his worm killing ways (52% GB%). Picking up potential saves on the wire is generally always a worthwhile activity so I won’t tell anyone to avoid picking up the other options in the Baltimore bullpen the next time Johnson has a poor outing, but he has the confidence of his manager and I expect him to pitch the ninth inning all year.

Glen Perkins recorded his 14th save of the season, but it’s the other numbers of his that are worth noting. Perkins is pitching to a 2.10 FIP and an elite 13.31 K/9 which both rank top ten in baseball among qualified relievers. It may not feel right at first saying it, but Perkins is a top notch reliever in this league and should be considered one of the best closers in fantasy baseball.

Closer Grid:


Closer First Second DL/Minors
Arizona Heath Bell David Hernandez Matt Reynolds J.J. Putz
Atlanta Craig Kimbrel Jordan Walden Cory Gearrin
Baltimore Jim Johnson Darren O’Day Tommy Hunter
Boston Andrew Bailey Junichi Tazawa Koji Uehara
CHI (NL) Kevin Gregg Carlos Marmol James Russell
CHI (AL) Addison Reed Jesse Crain Matt Thornton
Cincy Aroldis Chapman Jonathan Broxton J.J. Hoover Sean Marshall
Cleveland Vinnie Pestano Joe Smith Bryan Shaw Chris Perez
Colorado Rex Brothers Wilton Lopez Matt Belisle Rafael Betancourt
Detroit Jose Valverde Joaquin Benoit Phil Coke
Houston Jose Veras Hector Ambriz Wesley Wright
KC Greg Holland Aaron Crow Kelvin Herrera
LAA Ernesto Frieri Scott Downs Robert Coello Ryan Madson
LAD Kenley Jansen Brandon League Ronald Belisario
Miami Steve Cishek Mike Dunn Chad Qualls
Milwaukee Francisco Rodriguez Jim Henderson John Axford
Minnesota Glen Perkins Jared Burton Casey Fien
NY (NL) Bobby Parnell Brandon Lyon LaTroy Hawkins Frank Francisco
NY (AL) Mariano Rivera David Robertson Joba Chamberlain
Oakland Grant Balfour Ryan Cook Sean Doolittle
Philly Jonathan Papelbon Mike Adams Antonio Bastardo
Pittsburgh Jason Grilli Mark Melancon Tony Watson
St. Louis Edward Mujica Trevor Rosenthal Fernando Salas Jason Motte
SD Luke Gregerson Dale Thayer Joe Thatcher Huston Street
SF Sergio Romo Jeremy Affeldt Jean Machi Santiago Casilla
Seattle Tom Wilhelmsen Carter Capps Charlie Furbush
TB Fernando Rodney Joel Peralta Jake McGee
Texas Joe Nathan Tanner Scheppers Jason Frasor
Toronto Casey Janssen Steve Delabar Brett Cecil Sergio Santos
Wash. Rafael Soriano Drew Storen Tyler Clippard

[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]

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When he's not focusing on every team's bullpen situation, Ben can be found blogging at Ben's Baseball Bias and on Twitter @BensBias

31 Responses to “Bullpen Report: June 11, 2013”

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  1. Tak says:

    I’ve been waiting for this day since March. Kenley Jansen Or Bust!

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  2. Giovani says:

    Not that you need to be writing about the guys doing a solid job in this space, but it’s good to see Perkins getting some love. He’s a top ___ closer going forward? 10? 8? 5? The peripherals are fantastic, the Ks are there in spades and you don’t get much more job security than this guy outside of the Bronx.

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  3. NickyBob says:

    Cubs acquire Henry Rodriguez…newsworthy?

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    • You could argue that Carlos Marmol has better control than Henry Rodriguez. He’s an exciting arm but mostly for the wrong reasons at this point, wondering where the ball will go.

      His velocity will always make him intriguing, but he’ll need to illustrate vastly improved control to be newsworthy.

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  4. McKingford says:

    Maybe this is picking nits, but now that Jansen has finally been anointed closer, doesn’t this reduce the uncertainty in the Dodger bullpen? It seems to me that it should be marked down from red to yellow at least.

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    • I thought about it, but I figured we should give Jansen at least just an outing as closer before making a switch. Sorry for any confusion with his color on the tracker, as he is certainly more secure than some of the other red labeled closers.

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  5. bjj6569 says:

    corey hart and marcell ozuna for casey janssen and trevor plouffe. need to add saves. keeper league. keep 10 from roster. no salary. Essentially is Janssen worth the deal?

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    • marlins12 says:


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    • Matt says:

      Assuming you wouldn’t keep Hart or Ozuna anyways, I would try to find a better option and if all else fails revisit Jannsen.

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    • Corey Hart should return soon-ish and you might be able to receive something better in return once he’s back.

      No players listed are deal breakers, so your worst case won’t kill you but I do think you should shop around for something better or wait to see if/when Hart returns.

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  6. Brother Mouzone says:

    In a holds league, I currently have all my RP/P slots occupied by relievers and have 3 ace SPs since I’m well ahead of my innings pace. But I still am trying to gain ground in holds, so I have Matusz in my SP slot. Would Tommy Hunter be a better option there or is it pretty much a coin flip?

    Would you consider any of the other SP eligible holds guys? Smyly is the only one who looks even a little enticing to me, but he doesn’t get enough to really be on my radar.

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  7. S. Urista says:

    I have Tyler Clippard, and a few hiccups here and there notwithstanding, he’s been fine, even vulturing a few wins. But he’s not necessarily next in line for saves. Melancon, Putz, and D. Robertson (NYY) are all available (actually, so is Detroit’s Rondon) on my league’s waiver wire. Would anyone drop Clippard for one of the other guys?

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    • I like Robertson. It’s unlikely that Mo or Soriano relinquish the role unless it’s injury, and in that case Robertson’s just a better pitcher.

      However, Putz is intriguing for saves as he could regain the role once he’s back.

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  8. BSL says:

    Who is likely to receive more holds opportunities RoS: Kelvin Herrera or Jordan Walden?

    I have a solid bullpen right now (Jansen, Gregerson, Perkins, Rosenthal), but want to be able to augment my holds numbers in the event that someone pitches two or three days in a row.

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  9. mikeincmn says:

    In regards to K-Rod, any preference on him vs. Luke Gregerson? I currently own Gregerson, but K-Rod is out floating on my waiver wire still.

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    • Depends how bad you need saves. Gregerson will help you in the other pitching categories more, but he’ll likely lose the job when Street is back.

      Henderson is already back which could signal the end for K-Rod but the manager has kept him, and provided he pitches well he can hold onto it.

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      • Pops says:

        Safe to drop Henderson for Gerrit Cole? I already own Kimbrel, Bailey, Wilhelmsen and Parnell.

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      • @Pops

        If you already have 3-4 closers, Jim Henderson would certainly be expendable. Gerrit Cole is worthy of a flier. I don’t know how much to expect from him this season but if he does well in his second start, you could probably trade him for a decent piece, certainly better than you could for Henderson.

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  10. Kevin says:

    Apparently Pestano is never going to see a save chance.

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  11. ichirosan says:

    Keep League on a 20-man league with holds?

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  12. Drew says:

    In a weekly league with September playoffs, how would you rank these 4? Heath Bell, K-Rod, Cishek, and Madson.

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    • I’d probably do it in that order. Madson is compelling but he’s hurt, and you can never rely on someone to come back necessarily from injury.

      Cishek may have the job for the longest but as closer in Miami, I don’t expect him to be as valuable as Bell and K-Rod.

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