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April Closer Thread 2017

4,250 posts in this topic

10 minutes ago, DConny1 said:

He does walk a bit much but he also had a really high BABIP last year and low LOB%. Both due to correct this year


That may be true but you always have to go back to the walks.   How do you predict someone's future?  By looking at past results and those bb rates have not improved over the last 4 years in the majors. I can't think of any guys who have made it while walking 4+ a game.   It has to come down... 

Edited by knuckleheads

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I read the last 3 pages and there's hardly any discussion on the Neris/Benoit situation. I think the Neris save last night may be some of the biggest closer news yet. At least on the surface, it certainly appears like this is a clear transition to Neris for the closer role: 1) Benoit blows a save the other day. 2) a poster on here said last night the manager mentioned he likes Benoit in the setup role and 3) Neris closed in a game where Benoit was available and yet pitched the 8th. Is this a 1 time deal or is Neris the new closer of the Phillies? I think he's a must own until it sorts out. Top 5 RP potential. Only at 44% owned on yahoo...

Edited by Fister?Ihardlyknowher

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21 minutes ago, Fister?Ihardlyknowher said:

I read the last 3 pages and there's hardly any discussion on the Neris/Benoit situation. I think the Neris save last night may be some of the biggest closer news yet. At least on the surface, it certainly appears like this is a clear transition to Neris for the closer role: 1) Benoit blows a save the other day. 2) a poster on here said last night the manager mentioned he likes Benoit in the setup role and 3) Neris closed in a game where Benoit was available and yet pitched the 8th. Is this a 1 time deal or is Neris the new closer of the Phillies? I think he's a must own until it sorts out. Top 5 RP potential. Only at 44% owned on yahoo...

 

From what Mackanin said after the game it sounds like it's 1a) Neris 1b) Benoit. And I own Benoit, but that's just the way he made it sound. 

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6 hours ago, knuckleheads said:


That may be true but you always have to go back to the walks.   How do you predict someone's future?  By looking at past results and those bb rates have not improved over the last 4 years in the majors. I can't think of any guys who have made it while walking 4+ a game.   It has to come down... 

 

If we are talking Knebel vs Barnes, and look under the hood, Barnes looks like the superior pitcher. Knebel has a higher K% right now, 12.96% vs 10.45%,  but only sports a 9.4% swinging strike rate. Barnes has a whopping 19.4% swinging strike rate, mostly due to his wipeout slider. Knebel uses a power curveball that does not generate many whiffs but at least he gets ground balls- 56.3% this year. Barnes, however, has an otherworldly, admittedly small sample, 70% ground ball rate! It was only 48.6% last season, so let's see if he can keep it up. Knebel's ground ball rate last season was also under 50%... at 42.2%. And let's get back to their command. Knebel is sporting a 4.32 BB/9 after posting 4.41 BB/9 last season. Barnes is sporting s 3.48 BB/9 after posting 2.03 BB/9 in only 26.2 IP. It seems that Knebel is settled into a walk rate over 4 and Barnes may end up in the low to mid 3's.

 

Now, we know Knebel is the 8th inning guy and probably next in line to close, but Barnes is slightly better. If you can't roster both, and you are speculating for saves, I think you have to go with the guy next in line, who is Knebel. In 2014, when Trevor Rosenthal had 45 saves, his BB/9 was 5.37! So, it is possible to close with a walk rate above 4.

Edited by lassetjus
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Tigers made the Jimenez move official this morning.  He could very easily only be up for a game or two or only be used in low-leverage situations again, but I'm taking the risk and picking him up.  The writing is on the wall for K-Rod IMO

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I imagine the conversation between Mackanin and management began a little something like this...

 

You pay me to manage the team and win games and you are telling me how to manage my team because you don't want to pay a guy years down the road.  You realize what kind of disadvantage that puts us in...

 

Last night was a complete reverse from the Phillies original stance where they seemed dead set on not paying Neris.  

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1 hour ago, JJ1223 said:

Tigers made the Jimenez move official this morning.  He could very easily only be up for a game or two or only be used in low-leverage situations again, but I'm taking the risk and picking him up.  The writing is on the wall for K-Rod IMO

Weird that JJ pitched an inning last night (K'd all 3)...seems very foolish to call him after an IP the night before but who knows with DET.

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8 hours ago, knuckleheads said:

 

Knebel's numbers were pretty bad last year (high era, WHIP almost 1.5) so I don't see it as a given at all.  Especially if he's walking 4+ per game...

He was injured much if not all of last year. He's looked really good thus far. His curve is so good and has same arm slot as FB, but is like 15+ mph difference. Still, I think Barnes is def a dude. The new Mil FO/GM really gets it with the bullpen, I would not be shocked to see them trade everyone in the pen but Barnes.

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1 hour ago, JJ1223 said:

Tigers made the Jimenez move official this morning.  He could very easily only be up for a game or two or only be used in low-leverage situations again, but I'm taking the risk and picking him up.  The writing is on the wall for K-Rod IMO

I think that Jimenez is very, very unlikely to get save opps anytime soon or this year at all.  Take this as you want to, but as a die hard Tigers fan....I think K-Rod still has a decent amount of leash.  Justin Wilson is almost for sure next in line and even Alex Wilson has been used in the role in the past.

 

Does K-Rod look god awful?  Definitely.  Do most Tigers fans, including myself, want him removed from the role for good for an effective pitcher like Justin Wilson?  Definitely.

 

Ausmus is probably one of the more stubborn managers in the league and you have to remember his future is definitely on the line this year.  I think you're really grasping at straws w/ Jimenez.  He's thrown one low leverage inning in the majors in his career and wasn't promoted last year when he was clearly ready to contribute.

 

I can see adding in dynasty / keepers with deep benchs or 15+ team redrafts with extremely deep benches.  Other than that, I think there are better stash options.

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After watching Ausmus run Joe Nathan out there for beating after beating a few years ago, I still think KRod has some leash to go before any move is made.... and I also agree that Justin Wilson is the guy. If Joe Jiminez gets major play, I think its going to be in a 7th or 8th inning role at first. Incredibly rare that closers come up and immediately close. Both get at least a little grooming in set-up.

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3 minutes ago, afgolfman666 said:

I think that Jimenez is very, very unlikely to get save opps anytime soon or this year at all.  Take this as you want to, but as a die hard Tigers fan....I think K-Rod still has a decent amount of leash.  Justin Wilson is almost for sure next in line and even Alex Wilson has been used in the role in the past.

 

Does K-Rod look god awful?  Definitely.  Do most Tigers fans, including myself, want him removed from the role for good for an effective pitcher like Justin Wilson?  Definitely.

 

Ausmus is probably one of the more stubborn managers in the league and you have to remember his future is definitely on the line this year.  I think you're really grasping at straws w/ Jimenez.  He's thrown one low leverage inning in the majors in his career and wasn't promoted last year when he was clearly ready to contribute.

 

I can see adding in dynasty / keepers with deep benchs or 15+ team redrafts with extremely deep benches.  Other than that, I think there are better stash options.

You're almost definitely spot on with everything you said there.  That's why I threw that caveat in with my post that he could very well still be low-leverage/short term; I don't want to lead anyone on.  I'm taking a risk based more on what I WANT to see happen than what is likely to happen, but there is absolutely an outside chance that JJ sticks and takes the closer's role.  It's what he's being groomed for and Ausmus knows he's on the hot seat this year (or at least he should be) so maybe he stops being so stubborn and takes a risk for once.  Hell, batting Nick 4th yesterday was a step in the right direction for him, so who the hell knows?

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Those tracking the MIL situation, are you expecting Feliz to hang on to the role all year?

 

As an owner I've watched several of his save opps and while the numbers looked good until the blowup last game, every time out feels like a tightrope walk to me.  The velocity looks good but the control does not.  I've received a solid offer for him so thinking about dealing.

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36 minutes ago, kidtwentytwo said:

I imagine the conversation between Mackanin and management began a little something like this...

 

You pay me to manage the team and win games and you are telling me how to manage my team because you don't want to pay a guy years down the road.  You realize what kind of disadvantage that puts us in...

 

Last night was a complete reverse from the Phillies original stance where they seemed dead set on not paying Neris.  

I just don't believe that money is involved in any decision who is the closer....

 

5 minutes ago, Kenny Bania said:

Those tracking the MIL situation, are you expecting Feliz to hang on to the role all year?

 

As an owner I've watched several of his save opps and while the numbers looked good until the blowup last game, every time out feels like a tightrope walk to me.  The velocity looks good but the control does not.  I've received a solid offer for him so thinking about dealing.

at this time the closer job belongs to Feliz

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3 minutes ago, shakestreet said:

at this time the closer job belongs to Feliz

 

Ok.......that goes without saying.

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9 minutes ago, Kenny Bania said:

Those tracking the MIL situation, are you expecting Feliz to hang on to the role all year?

 

As an owner I've watched several of his save opps and while the numbers looked good until the blowup last game, every time out feels like a tightrope walk to me.  The velocity looks good but the control does not.  I've received a solid offer for him so thinking about dealing.

 

I think he'll keep the role (that's what they are paying him for), but it won't be with pretty ratios. He's going to give up HRs from time to time and blow saves. But I think it will be sporadic enough that it won't cost him his job.

 

Note that his blow-up last game followed a shaky outing by Knebel -- they had to bring in Feliz to get the final out of the 8th after Knebel got himself into a jam. Would it have made a difference if he had come in just for the 9th? Who knows, but he's looked good in his other 9th-inning-only appearances so I just chalk that up to the periodic blowups this guy is going to have.

 

If you have other reliable Save options, and the offer is good, you should consider it. I don't think he's going to be a top-5 closer or anything.

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13 minutes ago, Kenny Bania said:
3 minutes ago, Kenny Bania said:

 

Ok.......that goes without saying.

  I've received a solid offer for him so thinking about dealing.

my bad I missed about a solid offer ---- I agree with @El Guapo also it depends on your team needs and where you stand with your other closers.

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23 minutes ago, oswald737 said:

After watching Ausmus run Joe Nathan out there for beating after beating a few years ago, I still think KRod has some leash to go before any move is made.... and I also agree that Justin Wilson is the guy. If Joe Jiminez gets major play, I think its going to be in a 7th or 8th inning role at first. Incredibly rare that closers come up and immediately close. Both get at least a little grooming in set-up.

 

Spot on! Wilson should be next in line as closer, I think Ausmus doesn't like using a lefty as closer, and will give Krod a very long leash.

That said, this is the last year of Krod's contract, and you would think at some point this year, Al Avila would like to see Jimenez in the closer role in order to see where the Tigers stand with bolstering their bullpen in the off season. If by September, Detroit is using Wilson/Jimenez in the 8th/9th respectablly, the salary hit wouldn't be as big if they're just looking for depth, rather than a closer.

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12 hours ago, swingbatter said:

kelley with the save, but it was hardly dominant.  he allowed a single and a walk to put the winning run on base before closing the door.  hard to say kelley did anything to cement himself in the closer role tonight.   

 

Unless he is walking the bases loaded each time out, most managers only care if guy gets the save or not. Looking pretty doesn't really factor into it. 

 

In his last 5 appearances he has given up 2 hits and a walk while striking out 5. Did he cement his job? Um, unless you are Chapman, Jansen and a handful of others there are very few closers who have cemented their jobs. 75% of closers are all a couple of blown saves away from losing their job. There is a reason this tread is 126 pages long in April......

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With the way the pitching staff has looked and Thames going peak Josh Hamilton, it's not unrealistic to think that Milwaukee will be a contender this season.  Especially with the Cards & Pirates looking like shells of their former selves.  So what does that mean for the closer?  I don't know.  Probably can rule out them dealing Feliz.  If they remain in the race as the season goes on, it's plausible they will have less patience with him if he starts blowing games.  It also wouldn't rule out them trading FOR someone, but I can't imagine they'll be willing to give up pieces for a proven closer.

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Are we holding onto Neris and Benoit to see how things shake out or do we think Neris is the guy from here on out? Rotographs Sleeper and the Bust podcast said they think Benoit holds on to the job a little longer but I wonder if they recorded that before the end of the Phillies game last night. 

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I agree that Jimenez isn't likely to see saves any time soon but just to take a contrarian point of view and at the same time try and sell myself on picking him up in my dynasty league here a few things to think about...

 

1) The AL Central stinks outside of Cleveland. The Tigers are arguably the 2nd best team in the division and with a little luck could make a run at the Tribe. This isn't necessarily a losing team trying to save money or showcasing K-Rod to trade at the deadline. They will be however if K-Rod and the bullpen keeps blowing leads.

2) Justin Wilson is their only competent lefty. The only other lefty in their bullpen is Kyle Ryan who is meh. I think the Tigers would prefer to not move their only competent lefty into the closers role if they don't have to. That's just plugging one hole and opening another.

3) The Tigers are a big market team (3rd highest payroll in baseball). They don't care as much about finances or keeping the cost down of their younger players. Their bullpen should be more a meritocracy than some of these other small market teams we talk about where every dollar matters. 

 

So in summary, I agree that under most circumstances it is highly unlikely a rookie comes and takes the closers role. But this bullpen is so damn soft I won't be shocked if Jimenez has some success and runs with it similar to Diaz in Seattle last year. 

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3 hours ago, lassetjus said:

 

If we are talking Knebel vs Barnes, and look under the hood, Barnes looks like the superior pitcher. Knebel has a higher K% right now, 12.96% vs 10.45%,  but only sports a 9.4% swinging strike rate. Barnes has a whopping 19.4% swinging strike rate, mostly due to his wipeout slider. Knebel uses a power curveball that does not generate many whiffs but at least he gets ground balls- 56.3% this year. Barnes, however, has an otherworldly, admittedly small sample, 70% ground ball rate! It was only 48.6% last season, so let's see if he can keep it up. Knebel's ground ball rate last season was also under 50%... at 42.2%. And let's get back to their command. Knebel is sporting a 4.32 BB/9 after posting 4.41 BB/9 last season. Barnes is sporting s 3.48 BB/9 after posting 2.03 BB/9 in only 26.2 IP. It seems that Knebel is settled into a walk rate over 4 and Barnes may end up in the low to mid 3's.

 

Now, we know Knebel is the 8th inning guy and probably next in line to close, but Barnes is slightly better. If you can't roster both, and you are speculating for saves, I think you have to go with the guy next in line, who is Knebel. In 2014, when Trevor Rosenthal had 45 saves, his BB/9 was 5.37! So, it is possible to close with a walk rate above 4.

 

However, Rosenthal is a good example of a guy who didn't make it long term which funny enough is the guy I was thinking about when writing this.  He's a good comparison and a lot of interest is on him again but if he starts walking guys at that rate again he just won't get the job again.   It just doesn't play long term.  

Maybe Knebel is next in line but really where does that opinion come from?  The manager?  And if it's not him it's just us speculating based on Knebel holding down the 8th.  But I don't think it's automatic with a few factors involved.  For instance some managers may prefer to keep a guy in the 8th just to make few changes.  I don't know what they are thinking but neither does anyone else.  Benoit was first to get saves and Neris was the expected closer out of the gate. 

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1 hour ago, ST. STEVEN said:

He was injured much if not all of last year. He's looked really good thus far. His curve is so good and has same arm slot as FB, but is like 15+ mph difference. Still, I think Barnes is def a dude. The new Mil FO/GM really gets it with the bullpen, I would not be shocked to see them trade everyone in the pen but Barnes.

 

Yeah you are right and the fact is he might get better going forward.  By better I mean he has to get his walks down to 3 per 9 innings.

Edited by knuckleheads

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Glad people are talking about evil Knebel at last. Feliz is not very good, and there's no reason why they couldn't make a change if he keeps blowing up like last time. Think he's a good a saves stash as any now.

 

Bush scoreless inning but no save last night? Still a good clean inning, want to see it come soon though so there's no temptation to put the hoover back in there.

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