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Fantasy Baseball Draft Sleepers & Targets - Closers (RP)

To help you dominate all of your 2018 fantasy baseball leagues, below are some 2018 fantasy baseball closer/saves (RP) draft sleepers & waiver wire pickups to consider adding to your fantasy baseball teams. Be sure to also use our other draft resources and tools shown in the icons below.

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2018 Fantasy Baseball Draft Sleepers by MLB Position

ALL - C - 1B - 2B - SS - 3B - OF - SP - RP

 

Mike Montgomery (SP/RP, CHC) - Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 24% of leagues ANALYSIS: Chicago Cubs pitcher Mike Montgomery has been very effective for the Cubbies this season, carving out a role for the 2016 World Champions. It is unfortunate for Montgomery that Tyler Chatwood once again skirted huge damage despite walking everyone on the planet because we are really counting on the Cubbies handing Montgomery that rotation spot once Yu Darvish returns. Regardless, Darvish is still a ways away and Montgomery did his part on Tuesday night by...continue reading

Matt Strahm (SP/RP, SD) - Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 1% of leagues ANALYSIS: While San Diego deals with a myriad of arm injuries, San Diego Padres starting pitcher Matt Strahm has gotten the chance to act as their “opener” in three bullpen games now. In these three games, he has allowed one run and three hits in eight innings, striking out 11 batters. He also has not walked a batter in any of his last five appearances now, a stretch that includes three appearances against the NL East-leading Braves. While...continue reading

Dylan Covey (SP/RP, CHW) - Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 14+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 10% of leagues ANALYSIS: If you remember anything about Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Dylan Covey from 2017 then you probably want nothing to do with him. No one can blame you either: the man had a 7.71 ERA and 5.64 SIERA with a poor 13.3% strikeout rate in 70 innings. That makes for one terrible cup o’ coffee. However, Covey looks very different this season to those watching carefully because now he is throwing 95 mph and suddenly has command....continue reading

Frankie Montas (SP/RP, OAK) - Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 23% of leagues ANALYSIS: Write off Oakland Athletics pitcher Frankie Montas at your own risk. The young, hard-throwing right-hander has been traded three times before the age of 25, and the consensus seemed to be that he didn't have what it takes to stick in an MLB starting rotation. Montas made 23 appearances (all in relief) for the Athletics in 2017, posting a horrific 7.03 ERA and 1.84 WHIP across 32 innings. Though he also sported an abysmal 7.17...continue reading

Steven Wright (SP/RP, BOS) - Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 22% of leagues ANALYSIS: Red Sox starting pitcher Steven Wright is a bit of a lone ranger in today's MLB landscape - he is the only active pitcher still fooling professional hitters throwing a pitch that averages just 74.2 MPH.  That pitch, of course, is the famous knuckleball. Wright is throwing the knuckleball 84.9% of the time in 2018, and to say that the pitch is currently "on" is just a bit of an understatement. He has thrown a...continue reading

Joakim Soria (RP, CHW) - Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 41% of leagues ANALYSIS: After allowing runs in four of five appearances during a rough patch in mid-May, it looked like Joakim Soria had lost his position as the preferred option for saves on the South Side. The veteran hasn't allowed a run in nine appearances since that iffy stretch, however, and has recorded three saves over the last five days. On the season, Soria boasts respectable ratios (3.42 ERA, 1.18 WHIP) to go with his seven saves, buoyed by a sparkling 22.5...continue reading

Ryan Tepera (RP, TOR) - Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 22% of leagues ANALYSIS: Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Ryan Tepera has been profiled as a top waiver wire pickup frequently, but his ownership is only up 2% over the last week. Tyler Clippard was the closer for the Blue Jays over the last few weeks, but now it appears that Tepera is the man to end games north of the border. Tepera threw 3 1/3 innings last week and, while he did not register a save, he did...continue reading

Kyle Barraclough (RP, MIA) - Week 10 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 45% of leagues ANALYSIS: Brad Ziegler held the closer's role in Miami for two months despite horrendous ratios because his clunkers had mostly been confined to non-save situations. Those splits probably don't mean anything, but he was so terrible that it stood to reason he'd blow a save eventually. And once he did, Marlins' skipper Don Mattingly wasted no time in making Kyle Barraclough his new closer. Truth be told, this is how it should always have been. Bearclaw has the...continue reading

Kyle Barraclough (RP, MIA) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 45% of leagues ANALYSIS: Miami Marlins relief pitcher Kyle Barraclough will not be the closer in Miami with Brad Ziegler out of a job. Manager Don Mattingly has seemingly grown tired of Ziegler’s recent lackluster performance, and Barraclough could be the beneficiary. While this is not set in stone (Drew Steckenrider also could see some closer duties), this is a situation to monitor in shallow leagues if you are in need of some saves. Barraclough has been lights out...continue reading

Ryan Tepera (RP, TOR) - Week 10 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 20% of leagues ANALYSIS: Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Ryan Tepera was assumed to be the closer in Toronto after Roberto Osuna went on the restricted list, but did not win the job right away. Tyler Clippard was the closer for the Blue Jays over the last few weeks, but now it appears that Tepera is the man to end games north of the border. Tepera earned two saves last week and was 2-0 with...continue reading

Jose Alvarado (RP, TB) - Week 9 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 16% of leagues ANALYSIS: Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Jose Alvarado has had a strong start to the 2018 season, including a 2.95 ERA and 12 hits allowed in 21 1/3 innings, and should be in line for saves after Alex Colome was traded to the Mariners. Alvarado has allowed a run in two of his last three appearances, but those three runs are the only three that he has allowed this month. A cause for concern with...continue reading

MLB Closers and Saves Targets for Week 9

More injuries, more committees, more problems, right? This week featured an under-the-radar elite closer hitting the disabled list, a very much average temporary closer hitting the skids, and a formerly solid closer seemingly returning to form. Oh, and a rookie threw a pitch 105 miles per hour. Jordan Hicks has been the hardest throwing pitcher in baseball this season, by a pretty decent margin. He can consistently hit triple digits with his fastball, and has hit 105 more than once this season. He's recorded 16 pitches so far...continue reading

Brad Ziegler (RP, MIA) - Week 9 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 28% of leagues ANALYSIS: Miami Marlins relief pitcher Brad Ziegler appears to have righted the ship and is still the closer for the Marlins. After imploding against the Braves on May 20 (allowing four runs in 2/3 of an inning), he has had two scoreless appearances. He still has a 6.55 ERA and is 0-3, but he has nine saves. Fantasy owners know what they get from Ziegler, who only has 14 strikeouts in 22 innings, but has also only walked...continue reading

Jared Hughes (RP, CIN) - Week 8 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 3% of leagues ANALYSIS: Raisel Iglesias just hit the 10-day disabled list with "left bicep soreness" but considering that he's a right-hander, this shouldn't be too much of an issue. Regardless, closers are scarce and Jared Hughes is next in line for the job. Hughes has been excellent this season, as he sports a 1.30 ERA and 0.90 WHIP in 27 innings pitched. These ratios are likely propelled by his career-high 3.67 K/BB and career-low 0.33...continue reading

Nate Jones (RP, CWS) - Week 8 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Saves Leagues OWNED IN: 25% of leagues ANALYSIS: The Chicago White Sox may have found their guy after going through a closer carousel to start the season. Nate Jones has converted the past two save opportunity for the Sox and it's worth it to assume that they might ride the hot hand here. Joakim Soria is still the White Sox leader in saves, however, he hasn't converted one since April 27. Soria also has given up at least one run in four of...continue reading

Seranthony Dominguez (RP, PHI) - Closers and Saves Waiver Wire Adds

BALLER MOVE: Add in Deeper Saves Leagues OWNED IN: 4% of leagues ANALYSIS: The Phillies turned to rookie flamethrower Seranthony Dominguez to nail down the save today against the Cardinals, and he delivered. Dominguez was initially brought in the eighth inning, but came back out for the ninth again. He finished with two scoreless innings, zero hits or walks, two strikeouts, and the save. Those speculating for saves should add him immediately and see how this situation plays out - the talent is real here. Let's take a look. Dominguez...continue reading

Caleb Smith (SP/RP, MIA) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 39% of leagues ANALYSIS: Miami Marlins pitcher Caleb Smith should have been owned for a while and, hopefully, RotoBallers who have bought him surely will not have bailed already. However, his ownership is still too low and we need more people to realize the talent in South Florida. Since being given the “Be Aggressive” order by manager Don Mattingly, Smith has produced the following line: 24 IP, 4 ER, 4 BB, 31 SO. His .250 BABIP and 84% strand rate portend some...continue reading

Jim Johnson / Blake Parker (RP, LAA) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 2% of leagues ANALYSIS: Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Jim Johnson may be the major benefactor of another injury to Keynan Middleton and could get save opportunities in Los Angeles. Middleton, who has six saves this season, just came off the disabled list on Thursday. He was put on the DL on May 2 because of elbow inflammation and came off of the mound on Sunday with a similar issue. This opens up save opportunities for the Angels and...continue reading

Bruce Rondon (RP, CHW) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 4% of leagues ANALYSIS: Chicago White Sox reliever Bruce Rondon got a save opportunity on Sunday night and could be in a place to unseat Joakim Soria as the closer in Chicago. Soria and Nate Jones have each had opportunities to finish games for the White Sox, but have a combined 4.23 ERA and 1.34 WHIP in 27 2/3 innings. This could open the door for the big 27-year-old Rondon. Once the closer of the...continue reading

Edubray Ramos (RP, PHI) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 10% of leagues ANALYSIS: Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Edubray Ramos was the recipient of a save opportunity on Sunday, putting him squarely on the fantasy radar. Traditional Phillies closer Hector Neris has saved eight games this season, but also has a 5.17 ERA in 15 2/3 innings and has walked nine batters. Also, Phillies manager Gabe Kapler is far from traditional and may be known to use his bullpen more situationally than most managers. While Kapler's strategy may...continue reading

Tyler Clippard (RP, TOR) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 48% of leagues ANALYSIS: Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Tyler Clippard received the first save opportunity since Roberto Osuna was placed on the restricted list and may have the best chance for saves in Toronto. Osuna was arrested for assaulting a woman, and is out for an undetermined amount of time, so either Clippard or Ryan Tepera would be the best bet for saves north of the border. Tepera appeared to be the safest bet for...continue reading

Joakim Soria (RP, CWS) - Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 41% of leagues ANALYSIS: Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Joakim Soria appears to be the closer in on the North Side of Chicago, making him part of an elite group in fantasy baseball. He has four saves this season, striking out 13 batters in 12 1/3 innings. A two-time 40 save pitcher, who had a 2.01 ERA in 255 innings from 2007-2010, Soria has regressed over the last few seasons. While he has only walked two batters this season, he has...continue reading

Domingo German (RP/SP, NYY) - Week 5 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 0% of leagues ANALYSIS: With Jordan Montgomery likely to miss at least one turn in the rotation, if not quite a bit more, New York Yankees pitcher German looks to be the one to step into his rotation slot. He is technically a reliever on Yahoo right now, as he came out of the 'pen to relieve the injured JorMont on Tuesday, and promptly threw four shutout innings with four K's. He went 7-2 with 81 strikeouts and a 2.83 ERA/1.06 WHIP in...continue reading

A.J. Minter (ATL, RP) - Week 5 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 15% of leagues ANALYSIS: A.J. Minter was lights out in 2017 with 26 strikeouts in 15 innings and entered the 2018 season as the favorite to displace Arodys Vizcaino as the Atlanta Braves closer. The left-handed Minter started slowly with three walks and zero strikeouts in his first four outings. Since then he has struck out 11 in 8 1/3 innings to get his season back on track. However, he is still having an issue with...continue reading

Shane Greene (RP) - Week 4 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 61% of leagues ANALYSIS: Shane Greene took over the closer role for Detroit in August last year. From that point onward he had nine saves, two wins and a loss whilst putting up a 2.49 ERA with 23 strikeouts in 21 2/3 innings. Entering 2018, Greene was virtually assured the role once again but expectations were low. There were a lot of question marks about his ability to succeed in the role and about whether the Tigers would offer enough opportunities for...continue reading

Chris Devenski (RP) - Week 4 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 60% of Leagues ANALYSIS: Houston Astros relief pitcher Chris Devenski has been a very strong setup man over the last few seasons, but an injury to Ken Giles makes him the top waiver wire pickup of the week. With Giles dealing with back tightness, Devenski will be given save opportunities, making him considerably more valuable. Devenski already has two saves this season, allowing just one earned run in nine innings, and has struck out 11 and walked...continue reading

Bud Norris (RP, STL) - Week 3 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 34% of Leagues ANALYSIS: Norris saw two save opportunities last weekend in the series against Cincinnati Reds, converting both of them. While the closer job was widely expected to go to Greg Holland after he led the the NL in saves last season with 41, Holland has had some trouble shaking off the rust after he signed with the Cardinals on the third day of the regular season. While his ERA is only 3.86 in two 1/3 innings, his WHIP stands...continue reading

Keynan Middleton (RP, LAA) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 49% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: Fantasy owners know well at this point how much Mike Scioscia hates them. Since the start of the 2016 season, a whopping 13 pitchers have recorded at least one save for the Angels, more than any other team. Consequently, Los Angeles is the only team in baseball lacking a pitcher who has saved at least 20 games for them in that span. Bud Norris had 19 saves last year, and no other Angels pitcher cracked double digits in...continue reading

Robert Gsellman (RP, NYM) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 14+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 5% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: After struggling mightily in the Mets rotation last season, New York Mets relief pitcher Robert Gsellman has thrived in a new role to open the 2018 season. The team decided to transition him into more of a long relief role, with the hopes of finding their own Chad Green of sorts, and Gsellman has allowed just one earned run in six innings this season. His velocity is up 1.5 mph in the new role, and...continue reading

Adam Ottavino (RP, COL) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 20% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Adam Ottavino has seen his ownership numbers skyrocket after his fast start to the season, now being rostered in one-fifth of all leagues. Pretty crazy for a guy who held an ERA and FIP above five last season and is not a closer or starting pitcher. You only have to go back to late 2016/early 2017 though to get a sense of the type of talent he is and can be. In...continue reading

Joakim Soria (RP, CWS) - Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 30% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Joakim Soria has seemed to distance himself as the closer for the White Sox, at least in the early going of the 2018 season. Who would hold down this job was one of the big unknowns through the offseason, as many speculated that young relievers Nate Jones or Juan Minaya would get a chance. Once Joakim Soria was traded to the Sox in January, GM Rick Hahn said...continue reading

Jacob Barnes (RP, MIL) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 23% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: Corey Knebel is headed to the disabled list with a hamstring injury, which means that the ninth inning is up for grabs in Milwaukee. There are several viable candidates for the role. Josh Hader is the flashiest name, but also the most widely-owned. In addition, he's a lefty and probably more suited to his current multi-inning fireman role. Jeremy Jeffress and Matt Albers are veterans with prior closing...continue reading

Joakim Soria (RP) - Week 1 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 30% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: Who will be the White Sox closer in 2018? This was one of the big unknowns through the offseason, as many speculated that young relievers Nate Jones or Juan Minaya would get a chance. Once Joakim Soria was traded to the Sox in January, GM Rick Hahn said it would "provide us with veteran depth and enhanced flexibility." The team doesn't figure to contend in 2018, but they decided...continue reading

Keone Kela (RP, TEX) - Week 1 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 60% of Yahoo leagues ANALYSIS: As someone who treats relief pitchers as expendable due to their volatility, I always wait until much later in the draft to grab one. Closers, in particular, lose their jobs often depending on the competition behind them; never mind the possibilities for injuries. Case in point: Keone Kela of the Texas Rangers. Kela will have ample opportunities to cement himself as the closer for the Rangers. The problem will be if the guys in front of him can...continue reading

Nate Jones (RP, CHW) - Week 1 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Saves Leagues OWNED IN: 37% of leagues ANALYSIS: Back then, pros didn’t want him. Now he’s hot, pros all on him. That was a stretch and I don’t care, Nate Jones is for real (when he’s healthy) and should prove much more reliable and effective than Joakim Soria in the ninth inning. Nasty Nate has posted a 2.49 ERA with a 10.84 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9 over his last three seasons, with the issue being that he’s managed...continue reading

Keone Kela (RP, TEX) - Week 1 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Saves Leagues OWNED IN: 21% of leagues ANALYSIS: Kela was recently named the closer for the Texas Rangers. He may have previously dug himself into Texas’ doghouse, but he doesn’t deserve to be in fantasy ones too. Ignoring his brief disciplinary stint at Triple-A, the fireballer posted a 2.79 ERA (3.26 FIP) and 0.91 WHIP with 51 K’s in 38 ⅔ innings last season. He did a great job at limiting hard contact (26.8 percent hard-hit rate, 24.4 percent soft-contact rate), which went wonderfully with...continue reading

Archie Bradley (RP, ARI) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~165 CURRENT ADP:  190 ANALYSIS: Does anyone really expect Brad Boxberger to take the closer role away from Bradley? In Bradley, we’re talking about a guy who, after a move to pitching full-time in 2017, posted a 1.73 ERA, 1.041 WHIP, and a 9.7 K/9. His ERA was better than all but seven relief pitchers last season. Bradley also finished 12th among relievers last season in fWAR, sandwiched between Felipe Rivero and Ryan Madson. That alone doesn’t get fantasy points but is...continue reading

Dellin Betances (RP, NYY) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~230 CURRENT ADP: 278 ANALYSIS: At his current ADP, Dellin Betances is going undrafted in many standard leagues. While not currently a closer, Betances contributes meaningfully in strikeouts, ERA and WHIP. Since 2014, he ranks fourth with a 14.44 K/9 amongst all pitchers. He's been flat-out dominant out of the bullpen with a career 2.29 ERA, 2.42 xFIP and 1.04 WHIP. Betances has seen his ERA creep up the past two seasons from a decline in LOB% and a bit of wildness; his 6.64...continue reading

Brad Ziegler (RP, Mia) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target end of your draft or ~275, whichever comes first CURRENT ADP: 344 ANALYSIS: Miami Marlins closer Brad Ziegler is not a flashy pickup. He is not going to overwhelm anyone with strikeouts like Craig Kimbrel, induce a ridiculous amount of ground balls like Zach Britton, or blow teams away with a triple-digit fastball like Aroldis Chapman. In spite of that, he can still be a very valuable asset to your fantasy team this season, especially considering that...continue reading

Addison Reed (RP, MIN) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~200 CURRENT ADP:  260 ANALYSIS: Reed is currently being drafted right around pick 260. He’s going after at least 25 other relief pitchers, one of whom is teammate Fernando Rodney. This is the same Addison Reed who has posted a 2.29 ERA since going to the Mets in September of 2015. That 2.29 ERA ranks 10th in baseball among relief pitchers with at least 80 IP since September 2015. Reed’s wOBA against of .251 ranks 11th in baseball among that same demographic in the same...continue reading

Carl Edwards (RP, ChC) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~275 CURRENT ADP: 338 ANALYSIS: Chicago Cubs relief pitcher Carl Edwards is more valuable in holds leagues than leagues that do not count holds, but that should not stop you from scooping him up at the back end of your draft for relatively little. Relievers like Edwards are valuable in that they can bolster your pitching staff for a pretty low cost and provide good ratios and strikeouts. It is sometimes tough to roster guys that do not really rack up wins or saves, but Edwards is...continue reading

Brad Hand (RP, SD) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~105 CURRENT ADP: 119 ANALYSIS: Brad Hand followed up a strong 2016 with a fantastic 2017 campaign in which he posted a 2.16 ERA (2.90 xFIP) with 21 saves and a 33.4% K% over 79 1/3 IP. His innings total is likely to go down with a full season in the closer's role, but the accompanying spike in saves will be more than worth it in fantasy. Hand also benefits from Petco Park as long as he remains a Padre. It limits singles for all batters (98 Park factor) while suppressing home runs...continue reading

Felipe Rivero (RP, PIT) - 2018 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers & Draft Values

BALLER MOVE: Target ~80 CURRENT ADP: 88 ANALYSIS: Felipe Rivero combined a sparkling 1.67 ERA with a 29.3% K% in 2017, making him among the most valuable relievers in the fantasy game. He did it with a fastball velocity spike (98.5 mph vs. 95.8 mph in 2016) that helped his entire arsenal play up. Rivero threw his fastball for a strike 61.3% of the time last year, producing a 10.9% SwStr% and .201/.268/.256 triple slash line against. The offering's spin rate (2,465 RPM) was the 35th highest in MLB (min. 100 fastballs thrown),...continue reading

Blake Treinen (RP, OAK) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 37% Yahoo ANALYSIS: Blake Treinen opened the season as the Nationals' closer, but early struggles led to him quickly losing that role. Washington's bullpen was a nightmare during the entire first half, so they made a deal with the Athletics to acquire their best two relievers, Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson. Treinen was part of the package going the other way, and he's looked much better since arriving in Oakland. The 29-year-old has been a workhorse out...continue reading

Shane Greene (RP, DET) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 48% Yahoo ANALYSIS: Shane Greene hasn't recorded a save since August 28 and has allowed runs in two of his last three appearances. Still, he's the unquestioned closer for the Tigers and has performed well since assuming the role. Greene has converted all six of his save opportunities, with solid ratios (2.45 ERA, 1.16 WHIP) and a 9.8 K/9. Detroit's status as an also-ran doesn't preclude Greene from being a viable fantasy closer for the remainder of the season, and he's free to add in...continue reading

Arodys Vizcaino (RP, ATL) – Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 54% of Yahoo! Leagues   ANALYSIS: Arodys Vizcaino has finally wrestled the primary closer role away from Jim Johnson and the results have been as expected. Prior to his last outing on August 26th, Vizcaino had not allowed a run in 10 consecutive appearances. He pitched 9.1 innings in that span and struck out nine batters while allowing just three hits and two walks. That made him a strong contributor in every category and makes him a player...continue reading

Brad Ziegler (RP, MIA) – Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 42% of Yahoo! Leagues   ANALYSIS: Brad Ziegler certainly doesn’t carry a typical closer’s profile, as he has just 21 strikeouts in 40 innings pitched. He also has a cringe-worthy 4.73 ERA and 1.58 WHIP for the season. That makes it little surprise he is owned in only 42% of leagues despite converting nine saves in the month of August. However, it is imperative to look beyond his season-long ratios. Since he was activated from the DL on July 29 and put...continue reading

Matt Belisle (RP, MIN) – Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues OWNED IN: 18% of Yahoo! Leagues   ANALYSIS: Matt Belisle certainly isn’t going to fall in line with Craig Kimbrel, Kensley Jensen, or other elite closers, but he has been solid since taking over the closer role after Brandon Kintzler was dealt at the trade deadline. Since the trade deadline, Belisle has gone 3-for-4 in converting save opportunities. He has pitched four innings in that time and has posted eight strikeouts, a surprising mark given that he had struck...continue reading

Brad Hand (RP, SDP) - Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Leagues OWNED IN: 59% Yahoo ANALYSIS: Somewhat surprisingly, Brad Hand was not among the hundreds [citation needed] of relievers dealt at yesterday's trade deadline. The Padres opted to hang on to their relief ace, and with Brandon Maurer now in Kansas City, Hand should be expected to receive the lion's share of their save opportunities moving forward. The southpaw has converted all four save chances he's received since moving into the ninth-inning role, and hasn't been scored upon in almost two months. On the season,...continue reading

Shane Greene (RP, DET) - Closers and Saves Waiver Wire Adds

BALLER MOVE: Add in All Saves Leagues OWNED IN: 27% of Yahoo Leagues ANALYSIS: Earlier today, Tigers closer Justin Wilson was officially traded to the Cubs in a package deal. Shane Greene will now take over as the new Detroit closer, and manager Brad Ausmus confirmed that earlier today. Greene has pitched well this season with a 2.74 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, and 50:25 K:BB ratio in 46 innings pitched. He hasn't allowed a run in his last 13 appearances, and has held opponents to a .188 batting average overall. If you are in a league that values...continue reading