Fantasy Baseball: Closing Arguments – Add Sean Doolittle

A's Sean Doolittle

Today’s spotlight in Closing Arguments is shining directly on Sean Doolittle of the Oakland Athletics. When I reviewed the recent MLB saves recorded, his name leapt out to me. (It is a pretty cool name, in my opinion.) This add recommendation is geared for fantasy baseball teams in deep mixed or AL only leagues, or for the owners out there with room on their roster thanks to every single major league player being on the disabled list. Recently, Santiago Casilla was in the hit the hand in a game. Sean Doolittle got the save chance on Sunday, and he closed it out.

Sean Doolittle is available in 76% of Yahoo leagues at the time of this writing. Let’s check in on his stuff. This year he has 18:1 K:BB per ; and he holds career marks of 287:46 and a WHIP of 0.94. WHIP is (walks and hits divided by innings pitched) and a low number here is a good for you. In other words, he should help your fantasy baseball team get strikeouts and improved ERA / WHIP ratios. He is a former first round pick and his fastball velocity is around 94 mph (also per MLB) and those are both good things. With his career marks and his 2017 season so far, he may be working his way into the closing mix.

Some things to keep in mind when considering adding Sean Doolittle. First Santiago Casilla probably is not going on the DL, nor fading out of the closing mix necessarily. Also, Oakland is currently in last place at 31-40, which means there probably won’t be a ton of save opportunities going forward. Think of this is a cheap lottery ticket opportunity with the bonus of helping your fantasy baseball team’s strikeouts and ratios along the way. As a parting note, we are roughly 25 days from the new Game of Thrones.

Closer List as of 21 June:

Current CloserNext in lineTeamLeagueNotes
Brad Brach Darren O'DayBaltimoreAmerican LeagueZach Britton DL
Craig KimbrelJoe KellyBostonAmerican League
Aroldis ChapmanDellin BetancesNew York YankeesAmerican League
Alex ColomeBrad BoxbergerTampa BayAmerican LeagueBoxberger INJ
Roberto OsunaJason GrilliTorontoAmerican League
David RobertsonTommy KahnleChicago White SoxAmerican LeagueNate Jones DL
Cody AllenAndrew MillerClevelandAmerican League
Justin WilsonFrancisco RodriguezDetroitAmerican League
Kelvin HerreraJoakim SoriaKansas CityAmerican League
Brandon KintzlerRyan PresslyMinnesotaAmerican League
Ken GilesLuke GregersonHoustonAmerican League
Cam BedrosianDavid HernandezLos Angeles AngelesAmerican LeagueBud Norris DL / committee?
Santiago CasillaSean DoolittleOaklandAmerican LeagueCommittee?
Edwin DiazNick VincentSeattleAmerican League
Matt Bush Jeremy JeffressTexasAmerican League
Jim JohnsonMauricio CabreraAtlantaNational League
A.J. RamosKyle BarracloughMiamiNational League
Addison ReedFernando SalasNew York MetsNational LeagueJeurys Familia - Blood clot issue
Hector NerisPat NeshekPhiladelphiaNational LeagueCommittee?
Enny RomeroMatt AlbersWashingtonNational LeagueKoda Glover DL / Shawn Kelley DL/ committee
Wade DavisCarl EdwardsChicago CubsNational League
Raisel IglesiasDrew StorenCincinnatiNational League
Corey KnebelJacob BarnesMilwaukeeNational League
Tony WatsonFelipe RiveroPittsburghNational League
Seung Hwan OhTrevor RosenthalSt. LouisNational League
Fernando RodneyRandall DelgadoArizonaNational League
Greg HollandAdam OttavinoColoradoNational League
Kenley JansenSergio RomoLos Angeles DodgersNational League
Brandon MaurerRyan BuchterSan DiegoNational League
Mark MelanconDerek Law San FranciscoNational League

Angels David Hernandez

Victor Decolongon – Getty Images

Recent Changes, coming at you hot and fresh in bullet point style:

  • Yankees – Aroldis Champan off of the DL.
  • Nationals – Both Koda Glover and Shawn Kelly are on the DL; the team is back to a mix of Enny Romero and possibly Matt Albers. This is pure speculation on my part. Since Glover went down they haven’t many save chances so it is difficult to make an educated guess here. The Nationals are known to be looking for a closer on the trade market. I would avoid their bullpen in most formats. One could write a Greek tragedy based on the Nationals’ bullpen in 2017, complete perhaps with a pyrrhic victory.
  • Angels – Do Angels get injured? Yes, yes they do. Ask Mike Trout. Sigh. Bud Norris is on the DL now. Their manager has said they will split closer duties between David Hernandez and Cam Bedrosian. Wonderful. Basically this is another avoid situation, or buy a lottery ticket on the cheap.
  • Phillies – are now back to a committee closer team of Hector Neris / Pat Neshek.
  • Giants – Mark Melancon struggles continue but he psuedo-firmly holds onto the closer role. Just from watching a few of his recent outings, it seems like his fastball has dropped a tick. I checked a few sites but I don’t have the data and this may not be the main problem. But I am mildly concerned here. Mark Melancon fastball has been in the low 90’s for the last few seasons anyways, so it may not be significant. More problematic for his shareholders is the Giants inability to get to the 9th with a lead or to win games in general.




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