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Custom Fantasy Baseball Draft Review: Target Closers

rotoballer fantasy baseball advice affeldt

The following article was written by's team of expert analysts, in response to a question asked by one of our RotoBaller readers.  You can click here for more info if you're interested in having RotoBaller's experts review your 2013 fantasy baseball draft.


IMG 8816 Jeremy AffeldtGeneral Draft Summary:

From what we see here, your hitters look pretty solid.  Although we don't love all of your pitchers, you do have a young pitching staff with substantial upside.  The glaring problem with your roster is the lack of closers.  If your strategy was to punt saves, then we can understand that.  But we don't feel this is a viable strategy in general, and also your team isn't strong enough in the other categories to make up the difference across the scoreboard.  Another noticeable item from your draft is you selected Lucroy way too early, which may have cost you a bit in another category like saves.  We need to focus on your Saves situation here.


Areas of Weakness & How to Improve Your Team:

Although we aren't really concerned overall with your hitting, some of your offensive players do carry a fair amount of risk.  Goldschmidt, for example, isn't a proven year-to-year consistent producer yet, but has great upside. Rios is a little banged up, and has a tendency toward a completely down year from time to time. But overall your hitters are rather deep, so this is an area that we aren't concerned with. In fact, you may be able to trade away some of them for other areas of weakness such as RPs and SPs. This is your best bet to address your needs-- trading from your strength.

Your SPs are pretty solid, but there's a few question marks sprinkled in like Wade Davis, Jake McGee, etc. These guys are pretty much expendable. There are also a few players with good upside but we really aren't sure what we're gonna get from them - guys like Andrew Cashner, Ian Kennedy, Clay Buchholz, Julio Teheran. Just be careful not to start all of them all the time. If they have tough matchups, then bench them, especially since net Wins is one of your scoring cartegories.  A Loss really hurts you, so try to avoid being penalized extra for the Losses while chasing strikeouts. Additionally, many good SPs become available throughout the season, so be sure to use the waiver wire to replace these guys if they're struggling...

The biggest way to improve your team is to add closers. For starters, drop the expendable guys and pickup the "handcuffs" to other closers, or the guys most likely to replace in case of injury. There's a full list below.  Also you need to trade for at least one full-time closer immediately, preferrably two or three.  Bottom line: if you don't start getting saves, and you don't strongly compete in the remaining categories, you won't have any real chance finishing in the money in this league.  You aren't dominating enough in the other categories to make up the points difference. But not too worry, there's a lot of closer turnover every year, more than any other position.  Only 20% of the players who start the year as closers will get 80% of their team's saves opportunities.  In other words, there will be a lot of closers becoming available and you should pay attention to the news so that you can add them to your team in advance of the announcement.  Be sure to check back on for "breaking news" updates on this.


Who You Should Pickup from the Waiver Wire:

Pickup the "handcuffs" to other closers, or the guys most likely to replace in case of injury:

1st Tier: Jeremy Affedlt, David Hernandez, Scott Downs, Mark Melancon, Dale Thayer

2nd Tier: Kyle Farnsworth, Matt Thornton, Jesse Crain, Jared Burton, Joshua Fields, Sean Doolittle, Stephen Pryor, Jason Frasor, Fernando Salas, Jose Valverde


Who You Can Drop from Your Team:

Jake McGee, Wade Davis, Brian McCann (you have Lucroy), Aoki (you have plenty of OFs, steals isn't a category, and there's plenty of steals available Juan Pierre, Drew Stubbs, Coco Crisp).


Good luck!