FanPost

Closer Situation

I'm not a Heath Bell defender. He certainly has a way of making games interesting, but that doesn't mean I approve of his method of ensuring that every D-back fan is screaming at the TV/Radio/Computer every time he's in the game.

That said, I cannot grasp why people are under the impression that the return of Putz will change anything. Prior to his injury, Putz had blown four saves, in nine opportunities. Small sample size, yes, but still a bad enough rate to generate a lot of concern. While Bell makes everyone nervous, he has done the job, most of the time, with only two blown saves since taking over as closer, and three overall (one came in the seventh inning in a game where he had no chance of a save, thus being a bit unfair.) Bell had also saved nine straight before the debacle against Cincinnati.

The bad, of course, is obvious. Bell has given up runs in five straight appearances. His ERA, down from the stratosphere to a respectable 3.28 earlier this month, is now back over 5. He is performing below replacement level. I think he's tired. He needs some rest, which would require some comprehensive performances from the offense and starting pitching.

Putz isn't the answer. And the chances of acquiring a closer through a trade is slim, without giving up some prospects. Who is around that would be worth a shot?

David Hernandez would have been the next choice a short while ago. But a recent string of poor performances have probably shot his chances of getting the job. But after giving up six runs in three games, he's not given up any his last three appearances. He's having his worst season to date, though, and besides, if he takes over the 9th, who will work the 8th? Heath Bell, most likely, and that doesn't solve the problem.

Brad Ziegler has been the best short reliever so far. He hasn't given up a run since June 4th. He's not the problem in the bullpen; his 9 holds with no blown saves demonstrate this. He could probably do a good job in the role, and he has some experience there; he closed the last two months of his rookie season, and saved 11 games, with 2 blown saves. But once again, Ziegler is thriving in his role; would changing it be a good idea?

The possibility of Josh Collmenter as closer has intrigued me since his rookie year, when it became apparent that batters tended to hit him much better the second time around. He's been great in long relief this year, and while the same argument I make above against Hernandez and Ziegler might seem to apply here, there are multiple pitchers that can handle the long relief/mop-up role. Zeke Spruill comes to mind, but that could be an opportunity for a few pitchers currently at Reno to get some MLB experience. It would take some adjustment for Collmenter to get used to pitching every day or every other day, but I think this could be a role where he could thrive, even if he's not the traditional closer. It would at least be worth a shot, even if nothing came of it.

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join AZ Snake Pit

You must be a member of AZ Snake Pit to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at AZ Snake Pit. You should read them.

Join AZ Snake Pit

You must be a member of AZ Snake Pit to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at AZ Snake Pit. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker