Return to Cafe Hall of Fame

2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby Havok1517 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:48 pm

chargerss24 wrote:Is Fernando Rodney going to be the guy now in Seattle, or will Danny Farquhar wrest back the job from him sometime during the season?


I think unless Rodney gets injured, he'll be the guy in Seattle and they've made that fairly clear with his large contract.
Havok1517
Hall of Fame Hero
Hall of Fame Hero

User avatar
CafeholicCafe Writer
Posts: 8457
(Past Year: 24)
Joined: 8 Mar 2004
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby Havok1517 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:37 pm

I've been getting some questions on a few closer battles as pitchers and catchers are beginning to report to spring training. So, the first team I want to look at is the Baltimore Orioles. A recent article from MLB.COM stated that they fully expect Hunter to be the Orioles closer. Of course, this comes after the organization stated multiple times this fall that they would look outside to acquire a closer. This sentiment seemed to change after failing to sign Grant Balfour as their closer closer, which still exude a lot of confidence.

At Bat - Tommy Hunter
Image
At 6'3/248, Hunter not only has the bulldog attitude you like in a closer he also looks the part. The hard throwing righty is capable of hitting triple digits with a fastball that has subtle arch to it. Since Hunter is a converted starter, he is capable of sprinkling in some off-speed stuff to keep batters honest though he lacks the slider that many late-inning relievers possess. Instead, he mostly teams his fastball with a cutter, but his bread and butter is his heater. The good news is that Hunter eats up righties and gave up no homers to them last season. Hunter's main problem is that lefties see his pitches very well and dominate him. Also, even though he has a good fastball his career best 7.1 K/9 in 2013 is lackluster amongst other closers. He might be the 1st option but I wouldn't invest too much.

On Deck - Darren O'Day
Image
Okay, like Hunter, O'Day looks the part at 6'4/220 but doesn't throw nearly as hard being a trick pitcher. If we've learned anything over the years is that submariners or sidearmers are usually best used as situational relievers rather than everyday closers. The reason they are so valuable is that they provide a change of pace situations while prolonged use allows MLB hitters to catch up with the funk. O'Day pitched 62 innings and faced 247 batters compared to Hunter's 86 innings and 336 batters though O'Day's 8.6 K/9 was better than Hunters, it was his worst in 3 years. This isn't an endorsement of Hunter but rather a reality to check to O'Day believers as to how he's been used.

In The Hole - Ryan Webb
Image
With former-Orioles closer Jim Johnson now slated to close for the A's, the pitcher most comparable to Johnson is also the new kid on the block, Ryan Webb. Webb has an identical 6'6/240 athletic frame to Johnson and has an almost mirror fastball velocity as well as groundball rate based on their propensity to throw sinkers, which plays very well in Camden Yards. Webb is 2 years younger than Johnson and at the same time in their careers, Webb has been the better pitcher with a better K/9 rate. Webb also doesn't have the extreme split against lefties and righties that Hunter has faced. One caveat is the the Orioles pitching coach Rick Adair is no longer with the team and has been replaced Dave Wallace, which could impact Baltimore arms. Like Johnson, if Webb gets the job he won't be an elite closer due to lack of strikeouts but he could get a lot of saves as Johnson has led the majors the last two years. Taking a flyer could payoff big time here.

In the Rotation - Bud Norris
Image
Starter Bud Norris cannot stay healthy despite having a power arm. He has had major difficulties with his back and elbow, which has cost him many starts over the past few seasons. Morris has been a roller coaster starting. When he's on, he has a dynamite arm that would play anywhere on a pitching staff. At 6'0/220 and age 28, if Norris continues to have problems being consistent and staying healthy you have to think he'll be tried in the pen somewhere to limit his wear and tear and continue to take advantage of his arm.

On the Mend - Dylan Bundy
Image
To be honest, when healthy Dylan Bundy was one of the best arms I've ever seen and it was disappointing his career was postponed by TJ surgery. As Bundy is recovering from injury and stretching out to start in future seasons, it is not without precedent for an ailing ace to close, and close well, prior to returning to the rotation like John Smoltz and Adam Wainwright. Unlike those guys, Bundy is not a big guy at 6'1/195 and this would be a defendant gamble.

From The Sun - Suk-min Yoon
Image
With the signing of Korea's Suk-min Yoon, the Orioles are getting a 27 year-old righty with a low-90's fastball, biting slider, and a decent change-up. Before the Yoon signing, the Orioles rotation likely included a combination of Chen, Gonzalez, Norris, Tillman, Britton, and Gausman but he may force one of these guys to the pen or Gausman to the minors. At 6'0/190, Yoon isn't the biggest guy and hasn't experienced a full MLB season, something countryman Ryu suffered from late last season, so him starting its still up in the air. It is almost impossible to reference this signing without mentioning Koji Uehara, another Baltimore signing out of Asia that the Orioles wish they still had. In 2009, Uehara was signed by the Orioles and started 12 games with less than desired results. He was then moved to the pen and is now the closer of the World Champion Red Sox. It is still questionable where Yoon will pitch, but like Uehara, he could be a candidate to close.
Last edited by Havok1517 on Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Havok1517
Hall of Fame Hero
Hall of Fame Hero

User avatar
CafeholicCafe Writer
Posts: 8457
(Past Year: 24)
Joined: 8 Mar 2004
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby Bwanna » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:54 pm

thanks havok
[reg season/playoffs]
LFoD '08 [1st/3rd], '10 [1st/3rd], '11 [1st/2nd], '12 [1st/1st], '13, [1st/2nd], '14, [1st/1st]
BRAL '09 2nd, '10 1st
Bwanna
Hall of Fame Hero
Hall of Fame Hero

User avatar
CafeholicEagle EyeInnovative MemberWeb Supporter
Posts: 5634
(Past Year: 20)
Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby converge241 » Mon Feb 17, 2014 6:42 pm

If Gausman fails to win a rotation spot wonder if they give him a shot or just let him work it out in AAA for a later call up. Guessing the latter but still.
"I'm the man with the ball. I'm the man who can throw it faster than F***. So that's why I'm better than anyone in the world." - Kenny Powers
converge241
General Manager
General Manager

User avatar

Posts: 3187
(Past Year: 39)
Joined: 19 Mar 2003
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Massachusetts

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby Garry26 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:34 am

converge241 wrote:If Gausman fails to win a rotation spot wonder if they give him a shot or just let him work it out in AAA for a later call up. Guessing the latter but still.

They may make him a long reliever if they need one.

If Dice-K does well, Terry Collins in considering making him the 5th starter even if Mejia beats him, because he feels Mejia could be more valuable in their pen as long relief. The same thing could happen with Gausman. Having an extra good pitcher is a nice problem to have. He could do long relief and spot starts.

Not good for us though.
I love mock drafts.
Garry26
Minor League Mentor
Minor League Mentor


Posts: 528
(Past Year: 36)
Joined: 16 Jan 2004
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby joshb729 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 10:55 am

Terry Collins is the worst manager in baseball but I can't even see him bumping Mejia to long-relief. That'd be a ridiculous waste of his talent. That's a perfect role for a guy like Dice-K. I hate Collins with a passion.
joshb729
Little League Legend
Little League Legend


Posts: 13
(Past Year: 6)
Joined: 23 Feb 2014
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby kab21 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:42 pm

There are reasons why Mejia should be in the bullpen but losing a 'competition' with DiceK shouldn't be one of them. There has been talk of Mejia not holding up to a starter's workload for as long as he has been a prospect and he's barely thrown over 100 innings in a season in his career.
My website - The World Is Not That Big
kab21
Hall of Fame Hero
Hall of Fame Hero

User avatar
CafeholicCafe WriterCafe Ranker
Posts: 5372
(Past Year: 108)
Joined: 24 Nov 2007
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby joshb729 » Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:52 am

kab21 wrote:There are reasons why Mejia should be in the bullpen but losing a 'competition' with DiceK shouldn't be one of them. There has been talk of Mejia not holding up to a starter's workload for as long as he has been a prospect and he's barely thrown over 100 innings in a season in his career.


The horrible Minaya regime put too much on this kid too early. They pushed him to the majors at 19 WAYYY before he was ready and pretty much fucked up his career. He needs to just go back to pitching on a routine. He can still be a starter, he's got an ace's arsenal. They just need to quit jerking him around.
joshb729
Little League Legend
Little League Legend


Posts: 13
(Past Year: 6)
Joined: 23 Feb 2014
Home Cafe: Baseball

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby bigh0rt » Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:52 am

joshb729 wrote:Terry Collins is the worst manager in baseball but I can't even see him bumping Mejia to long-relief. That'd be a ridiculous waste of his talent. That's a perfect role for a guy like Dice-K. I hate Collins with a passion.

Managing a team with no talent isn't rocket science. Collins has plugged the trash he has in just fine. The only issue I have with him could be some of Matt Harvey's pitch counts last year, but that's Monday morning QBing.
bigh0rt
Hall of Fame Hero
Hall of Fame Hero

User avatar
CafeholicCafe WriterGraphics ExpertMock(ing) DrafterEagle EyeInnovative MemberCafe MusketeerWeb SupporterPick 3 Weekly Winner
Posts: 24931
(Past Year: 376)
Joined: 3 Jun 2005
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Crowding The Plate

Re: 2014 CLOSERS THREAD

Postby converge241 » Tue Feb 25, 2014 12:51 pm

@RyanPBoyer: Brace yourself. RT @LangoschMLB Trevor Rosenthal heads off field with trainer after throwing. Unclear what issue may be.
"I'm the man with the ball. I'm the man who can throw it faster than F***. So that's why I'm better than anyone in the world." - Kenny Powers
converge241
General Manager
General Manager

User avatar

Posts: 3187
(Past Year: 39)
Joined: 19 Mar 2003
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Massachusetts

PreviousNext

Return to Cafe Hall of Fame

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

cron