Fantasy Baseball: Closing Arguments – add Trevor Hildenberger

Twins Closer

Closing Arguments is back to give you advice on adding a closer to your fantasy baseball team, Trevor Hildenberger. While, not a household name, he can help your team out as the season winds down.  

Hildenberger is available in 98% of Yahoo leagues. He is currently the 8th inning or setup guy for the Minnesota Twins. According to MLB Trevor Hildenberger’s first game Major League game was on June 23rd of this season. He pitched one inning and recorded a strikeout. Fast forward to today, and he has now amassed 36 strikeouts in 35 innings pitched with only four walks. Four. That is a 36:4 K:BB ratio for the math nerds in the front row. That is a stellar ratio and is largely the reason he is in the 8th inning spot after the Twins traded some arms away.

Well let’s look a little deeper to see if this is just a fluke. His minor league statistics include a 200:26 K:BB ratio, which is incredible. That is one of the best ratios I have seen. It would also line up to the replies and likes of a really bad tweet. Trust me I know something about bad tweeting. So with the minor league data in hand we see that this is no fluke. Hildenberger has quietly been striking guys out at every level. This is what we want to see in a potential deep arm add. The arrow is pointing way up.

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There are a few reasons NOT to go crazy bidding on the guy or dumping another decent player to grab him. He does not throw fast. Depending on your sources his fastball sits between 88 – 91 miles per hour. That is definitely slow for MLB standards and especially slow for a potential closer. According to Rotoworld, he was selected in the 22nd round of the 2014 draft. Usually successful MLB pitchers come from the early rounds.

I don’t think these negatives are reason enough to stay away. He has succeeded at every level and is now shutting down MLB hitters routinely in the 8th inning of games. He has two paths two saves one of which is moving ahead of Matt Belisle to the closer spot for the Twins. This path is definitely possible for Trevor Hildenberger but there isn’t much time left in the season. If he got the job tomorrow he would have less than month to firmly nail it down for 2018. The other path would be a trade in the offseason or for next year. That obviously would only help those of you in keeper leagues.

It needs to be said that Trevor Hildenberger has value in his role now. Not only in holds leagues, but standard 5 x 5 or 6 x 6 roto leagues. He is getting innings and strikeouts. Even in deep points leagues I could see using him. He has amassed 92 points in the standard Yahoo points format in half of a season and is available on nearly every single waiver wire.

Below is the updated Closer Chart as of 09 September:

Current CloserNext in lineTeamLeagueNotes
Zach BrittonBrad Brach BaltimoreAmerican League
Craig KimbrelAddison ReedBostonAmerican League
Aroldis ChapmanDellin BetancesNew York YankeesAmerican League
Alex ColomeBrad BoxbergerTampa BayAmerican League
Roberto OsunaRyan TeperaTorontoAmerican League
Juan MinayaunknownChicago White SoxAmerican LeagueClippard went to HOU. CWS bullpen still an unknown
Cody AllenAndrew Miller - DLClevelandAmerican League
Shane GreeneAlex WilsonDetroitAmerican League
Brandon Maurerup for grabsKansas CityAmerican LeagueHerrera removed from closer spot. It is up for grabs
Matt BelisleTrevor HildenbergerMinnesotaAmerican League
Ken GilesJoe MusgraveHoustonAmerican LeagueGregerson out of the 8th.
Blake ParkerCam BedrosianLos Angeles AngelesAmerican LeagueCloser spot is up for grabs and they have been rotating.
Blake TreinenSantiago CasillaOaklandAmerican League
Edwin DiazNick VincentSeattleAmerican League
Alex ClaudiocommitteeTexasAmerican LeagueKeone Kela - coming off DL soon
Arodys VizcainoJim JohnsonAtlantaNational League
Brad ZeiglerKyle BarracloughMiamiNational League
A.J. RamosJeurys FamiliaNew York MetsNational League
Hector NerisLuis GarciaPhiladelphiaNational League
Sean DoolittleBrandon KintzlerWashingtonNational League
Wade DavisCarl EdwardsChicago CubsNational League
Raisel IglesiasMichael LorenzenCincinnatiNational League
Corey KnebelAnthony SwarzakMilwaukeeNational League
Felipe RiveroDaniel HudsonPittsburghNational LeagueJuan Nicasio dropped.
Seung Hwan OhJuan NicasioSt. LouisNational LeagueTrevor Rosenthal DL done for season, Closer spot is up for grabs
Fernando RodneyArchie BradleyArizonaNational League
Greg HollandJake McGeeColoradoNational League
Kenley JansenPedro BaezLos Angeles DodgersNational League
Brad HandKirby YatesSan DiegoNational League
Sam Dyson Hunter StricklandSan FranciscoNational LeagueMark Melancon DL done for season

There are a few changes to the chart since our last post, and some closer roles are up for grabs. Certainly they all merit dart throws (STL) if you are desperate for saves. However the end of the season usually makes these situations to avoid. Managers have multiple concerns including fatigue and positioning for the playoffs or following seasons which cause them to be pretty ambiguous or non-committal. Thanks for reading all season and good luck in your hunt for the trophy.



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