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Who Is The Marlins' Closer? Fantasy Baseball Saves Outlooks

Dylan Floro - Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

The 2023 Miami Marlins roster contains many questions. There's no question more pertinent to fantasy baseball players than who their closer is. Winning the saves category is integral to success in any roto fantasy baseball league.

In 2022, the Marlins used a committee approach, but two relievers ultimately set themselves apart. Tanner Scott was the go-to ninth-inning option for the Marlins from June to August, but he lost the job come September. The man who took over was Dylan Floro. Floro finished with seven saves down the stretch in September.

The Marlins beefed up their bullpen in the 2023 offseason. Going into the season, Floro and Scott remained options, but the introduction of Matt Barnes and A.J. Puk made the closer role the most competitive spot. Through 44 games, four different Marlins relievers have been credited with saves. Of all the names in the Marlins bullpen, who will have the biggest impact in fantasy baseball?

Be sure to check all of our fantasy baseball lineup tools and weekly lineup resources:

 

Early Season Competitors

The Marlins entered spring training with many options at closer. Floro seemed like the best in-house option after his stellar 2022 season, where he finished in the 80th percentile for opponent hard-hit %, xERA, xWOBA, barrel rate, walk rate, and chase rate.

Tanner Scott was on the outs after his disappointing 2022 season. He lost the trust of manager Don Mattingly with a bottom-of-the-barrel 15.6% walk rate and 4.31 ERA. But with manager Don Mattingly ousted, he still had a chance to regain his role as the preferred closing option.

The off-season imports would also be strong competitors for the closing job. Outfielder JJ Bleday was dealt to the Athletics for reliever A.J. Puk. The 28-year-old had spent three seasons with the A's and was coming off his best season yet, with four saves and 20 holds in 2022.

Matt Barnes was acquired off waivers from the Red Sox after Boston designated the 32-year-old for assignment. The 2021 All-Star was unable to stabilize himself after missing chunks of the season with Boston, finishing with a 4.53 SIERA, 19.3% strikeout rate, and eight saves. But with 47 saves and 99 holds in his nine-year major-league career, Barnes had the late-game experience to claim the closing role.

 

Two-Man Race

The preferred ninth-inning options in Miami this season have been Floro and Puk. While Barnes and Scott had chances to finish games, they played themselves out of the picture after putting up numbers similar to their 2022 seasons.

Puk is the team leader in saves with six. He claimed the closer role early with a 3.07 ERA and impressive advanced numbers (.180 xBA, .281 xSLG, 2.09 xERA, .228 xWOBA). But he was recently diagnosed with dead arm and subsequently assigned to the injured list.

Dylan Floro has grabbed the closer role from Puk's weakened arm. Floro has picked up four saves in Puk's absence and is putting up impressive numbers as well (2.66 ERA, .197 xBA, .260 xSLG, 2.14 xERA, .231 xWOBA).

It's too early to determine who the closer will be for the rest of the season. This two-man competition has fantasy implications. Floro is a priority waiver wire pickup until Puk gets back, and Puk can now be dropped in shallower leagues as he no longer has an unquestioned claim to the closer role.



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