Eno Sarris

Saves and Steals

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Saves Around the League

Wednesday, September 05, 2012


 

Tier 5: Rollercoaster rides (5) (AKA: The "Angels and Diamondbacks" Tier.)

 

Sergio Romo (first chair), Javier Lopez (second chair), Santiago Casilla (third chair), San Francisco Giants
Frank Francisco (first chair), Bobby Parnell (second chair),  Jon Rauch (third chair), New York Mets
Ronald Belisario (first chair), Brandon League (second chair), Los Angeles Dodgers
Glen Perkins (first chair), Jared Burton (second chair), Minnesota Twins
Luke Gregerson (first chair), Dale Thayer (second chair), San Diego Padres

 

The Angels and Diamondbacks have a non-zero chance of making the postseason. And so did the Rays and Cardinals last season. Just saying.

 

These closer have a non-zero chance of helping you in one category. They'll probably make a muted impact on your standings, though. Sergio Romo is about 1/2 of a great closer, and Javier Lopez is the other half. You'd think it would work out to 2/3 and 1/3, given the number of lefties in the league, but there are three outs. And if the lefty comes last, the save goes to Lopez.

 

There's some talk that the Dodgers' closer is Brandon League, but most of what I've seen has it as a cooperative thing, and they've split the last two save chances since Kenley Jansen went on the DL with his heart issues again. In that case, give the nod to Belisario, who's been the better pitcher recently, and has more strikeouts over his career with a similar ground-ball rate. The control is not always there, but the stuff is. Here's a vote for the goggled guy, at least for the next two weeks while Kenley Jansen is out.

 

Luke Gregerson, despite his Romo-ian slider-love and platoon splits, looks like the closer in San Diego. But Huston Street is throwing bullpens and feeling fine. He won't earn more than a handful of saves, although he could put fine enough work in that he cements his setup man status and makes him an interesting handcuff in 2013.

 

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Injured

 

Sergio Santos (shoulder), Toronto Blue Jays
Matt Capps (shoulder), Minnesota Twins
Huston Street (calf), San Diego Padres
Kenley Jansen (heart), Los Angeles Dodgers

 

Huston Street still feels good. He's still throwing bullpens. He still hasn't run. Kenley Jansen should be back on September 17 after an ablation which should fix his irregular heartbeat. None of that makes any sense to me, but I'll nod. He's dealt with this before, which gives his owners hope.

 

The Deposed

 

Jordan Walden, Los Angeles Angels
Hector Santiago, Chicago White Sox
Brian Fuentes, St. Louis Cardinals
Javy Guerra, Los Angeles Dodgers
Sean Marshall, Cincinnati Reds  
Henry Rodriguez, Washington Nationals
Brandon League, Seattle Mariners
Rafael Dolis, Chicago Cubs
Jonathan Broxton, Kansas City Royals
Ryan Cook, Oakland Athletics.
Santiago Casilla, San Francisco Giants

 

Santiago Casilla and Ryan Cook are pitching well, but they'll probably stay on this list.

 

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The Steals Department

 

Let's do a streaming update. Pittsburgh (worst in baseball vs. the stolen base) has the Cubs in town, but with Tony Campana on the bench most days and Starlin Castro owned, the only real threat is recent callup Brett Jackson, who can't make contact to save his life and hasn't stolen a major league base yet. Maybe try out Darwin Barney -- one of his six steals on the year came against the Pirates early in the season. Washington is second-worst and they have the Marlins in town. Shallower leaguers will still find Justin Ruggiano (Parmigiano) on their wire, and even though he hasn't been efficient on the basepaths, he's a worthy pickup, better than Barney. Deep leaguers can look at Donovan Solano And Bryan Petersen, but remember that Petersen is being platooned and really only starting against righties.

 

In the American League, Minnesota and Texas are the laggards in defending against the stolen base. The Twins get the Indians, so Michael Brantley is probably the best shallow-leaguer there. He's probably on par with Ruggiano, but he obviously has less power. Shin-Soo Choo and Jason Kipnis are probably owned, leaving few regulars with stolen-base speed that will be available and useful. Jason Donald? Maybe he'll play. The Rays go up against Texas and bring a plethora of waiver options to the table. If B.J. Upton or Desmond Jennings are available, they trump all other options. Matt Joyce can steal a little, too. The deep leaguers will have to check the daily lineups to see if Elliot Johnson, Ryan Roberts, or Sean Rodriguez are playing. They're interesting base stealers, and in that order.



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Eno Sarris is an editor and writer at FanGraphs.com. You can find his work gathered in one place at and enosarris.com. Follow his misadventures in writing on Twitter as well.
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