Fantasy Baseball Back to Earth Players – Relief Pitchers
Here’s a look at some relief pitchers that could take a step back in 2010.
David Aardsma, Seattle Mariners
Aardsma was brilliant last year racking up 38 saves with a 2.52 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. Seattle was his fifth team in five seasons. He pretty much struggled every other year. I want to see another good year out of him before I’ll say he’s turned the corner.
Kevin Gregg, Toronto Blue Jays
Gregg had 23 saves last year for the Cubs. This year he’s fighting for the Blue Jays’ closer gig. If he doesn’t win it out of the gate, it’s unlikely he comes close to that number.
Trevor Hoffman, Milwaukee Brewers
Hoffman was born in 1967. I don’t know how much longer a 42-year old pitcher can post numbers of 37 saves, a 1.83 ERA, and a 0.91 WHIP. I’d still love him as a #2 closer, but he almost has to regress.
J.P. Howell, Tampa Bay Rays
Howell picked up 17 saves last year for the Rays. This year Rafael Soriano will be the Rays closer. Plus, Howell will miss the start of the year with a shoulder injury.
Brad Lidge, Philadelphia Phillies
Lidge will miss the start of the year because of injury. If Ryan Madson performs well filling in, it could put them in a closer by committee situation in the very least.
Fernando Rodney, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Rodney is a setup man for the Angels now so any hopes of matching the 37 saves he recorded last year will take ineffectiveness or an injury to Brian Fuentes.
Mike MacDougal, Free Agent
MacDougal was cut by the Marlins despite saving 20 of 21 opportunities last year for the Nationals. He’ll likely land somewhere, but won’t be in the running for the closing gig unless someone stumbles or gets hurt.
George Sherrill, Los Angeles Dodgers
Sherrill had 21 saves last year. 20 came with the Orioles when he held down the closer gig. As a setup man to Jonathan Broxton, he can only hope for an injury.
C.J. Wilson, Texas Rangers
Wilson picked up 14 saves last year while Frank Francisco was injured. Unless the injury bug hits again, it’s unlikely he’ll match that total.
Michael Wuertz, Oakland A’s
Wuertz set his bar extremely high by racking up 102 Ks last year. He’s always been a strikeout pitcher, but that number is staggering for a guy throwing just 78-2/3 innings.His 2.63 ERA was a career low, and his 0.95 WHIP is 0.30 points lower than his previous low.