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MLB Closers And Saves Waiver Wire Watch for 8/4/15

Now that the trade deadline has come and gone, we can focus on finding value from each teams current roster moving forward. This week, we'll take a look at pitchers who have risen to the closer role in the absence of the traded incumbents above them. We will also look at closers on a new club ready to make an impact right out of the gate. As always, we'll also look at guys who must be dropped immediately and/or avoided at all costs.

For a complete look at all the bullpen situations across the MLB, check out and bookmark our MLB Closer Depth Charts


The Closers

Craig Kimbrel (SD)

Just an update on Kimbrel, who amid trade rumors has found himself still with the Padres. This is most significant to Joaquin Benoit who would’ve been a great waiver wire option had Kimbrel been traded. Kimbrel remains an elite closer option as he has been for the past two and a half years, regardless which city he calls home.

Alex Wilson (DET)

With the trade of Joakim Soria, Wilson has really stepped up for the Tigers in the closer role. He has ten consecutive appearances without allowing an earned run, and has recorded the only save chance for the Tigers since the trade deadline. While he isn't an elite strikeout pitcher, he does a great job a keeping the ball down in the zone and makes it hard to elevate pitches with power. In 56.2 innings he has only allowed two home runs this season.

Wilson is one of the best waiver wire options on the board right now, and at 19.3% owned in ESPN leagues, he should be available for most of you.

Tommy Hunter (CHC)

Hunter was traded from the Orioles to the Cubs, who immediately sent him in for a save chance. Hunter was able to record two outs on only three pitches and get the save. It is unknown whether he will be given a shot to close consistently but it seems that Jason Motte’s run is coming to an end. The opportunities should go mostly to Hector Rondon with Hunter waiting in the wings. Hunter is only 1.8% owned in ESPN leagues so keep an eye on the situation if Rondon starts to struggle.

John Axford (COL)

The Axford-at-closer run has ended for the Rockies after five straight appearances where he gave up at least one run, including four blown saves. Absolutely awful pitching from Axford recently. He should be dropped under any circumstance as there is no way he can be trusted in late game situations moving forward. I don't think any of his replacements are great waiver wire options since the Rockies struggle to win games and Coors field is nearly impossible to pitch well. Tommy Kahnle is an interesting player to monitor in case he starts to see some save chances. He has pitched well of late and sports about a K/inning ratio in his 94.1 career innings pitched. He is only 2.2% owned in ESPN leagues so waiting another week on him would be a safe move to make.

Mariners Bullpen

The entire bullpen keeps imploding and continues to struggle. My only advice is to STAY AWAY, despite the pitcher-friendly environment.


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