Monday, July 6, 2009

Summoning the Closer in the 8th


Why bring in your closer in the 8th inning, risking his effectiveness in the 9th?

OK, fine, because the set-up or the mop-up guy has gotten himself and the team into a nasty jam and your closer is the steel-nerved savior.

How many times have you painfully witnessed your closer trotting out into the diamond in the 8th with runners in scoring position only to watch helplessly as your fantasy baseball team's ERA and WHIP ballooned?

In the past three days, Chad Qualls and Jason Frasor were called upon to get four outs to earn a save. Both closers came through, but Frasor's outing yielded ugly numbers of 13.50 ERA and 3.00 WHIP.

After Jeremy Accardo plunked two Yankees in-a-row on Monday (7/6) in the 8th to load the bases, Frasor came in and promptly walked in a run before giving up two earned runs of his own (a bloop single by Hideki Matsui) in the 9th for the save. Phew. When is Scott Downs coming off the DL?

On the flip-side, you have to love the less-than-an-inning saves. Especially the one-out save.

On Sunday (7/5), MacDougal had to save Scott Olsen's 116-pitch outing against the Atlanta Braves, and he did it in the most interesting fashion by allowing two runners of his own after Olsen served-up three runs on a long home-run by Nate McLouth with two outs.

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