KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Closer Hot Seat series gives you no-nonsense ratings of performances, injuries and managerial decisions in MLB bullpens. Get your arm loose: Let's find fantasy baseball players in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball league who'll get saves.
Wilton Lopez hadn't pitched in a couple of days, but the Houston Astros gave Wesley Wright a shot in game-finishing a save chance on Monday night anyway. The left-hander responded with 1 1/3 scoreless frames against the Chicago Cubs to pick up his first save of 2012 and the second of his career.
The 'Stros figure to have a number of questions to answer this winter, and they don't figure to spend money to address most of them. Closer is almost surely included, and Wright may get a crack at the role next spring, along with Lopez of course.
Money for nothing
Jonathan Papelbon had pitched on each of the two days prior to Monday and expended 52 pitches to get through his two innings. Plus, the Philadelphia Phillies ain't playing for jack, anyway. So, with a 2-0 lead going into the bottom of the ninth, Charlie Manuel got another look at the future last night.
Rookie right-hander Phillippe Aumont tossed a scoreless frame against the Washington Nationals to pick up the second save of his MLB career. He struck out one, and the frame required only nine pitches, seven of which were strikes. He has a 3.68 ERA, with nine walks and 14 K's, in his 14 2/3 innings in the bigs this year.
If only the Phils had committed the $50 mil for four years they did to Paps to a player who has more of an impact on the game. ...
Santiago Casilla seemed to have jumped back into the saves picture with his recent performances. He probably didn't help his cause to remain part of the committee on Monday night, though.
Bruce Bochy elected to go with Casilla in a 2-2 game in the bottom of the ninth against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The righty retired only one batter while giving up three singles, the third of which came after an intentional walk to load the bases. The Blue's playoff hopes remained alive with the W.
Dodgers pseudo-closer Brandon League picked up the win because he pitched a scoreless top of the frame.
Other Monday saviors
|Fernando Rodney (47), Rays
||Moved ERA to 0.605, which would set record
|Jason Motte (41), Cardinals
|Jose Valverde (35), Tigers
|John Axford (34), Brewers
||Got back on the horse, with 3 K, after blunder on Thurs.
|Grant Balfour (23), Athletics
||Fanned the side
|Steve Cishek (15), Marlins
||Back in biz with clean frame
|Jared Hughes (2), Pirates
||Pitched clean stanza with Joel Hanrahan, others resting
|Josh Roenicke (1), Rockies
||Notched 2 outs, despite H and BB, in 13th after Rafael Betancourt's botch job in 9th
About Nicholas Minnix
Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.
The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.
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