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Monday, June 24, 2013

FANTASY BASEBALL STATUS REPORT: JASON GRILLI RP PITTSBURGH PIRATES

Sometimes it is that obvious to me.  In the case of Pittsburgh Pirates closer extraordinaire, the planets aligned perfectly in the winter of 2012 when word got out that incumbent Joel Hanrahan had been sent packing to get injured for the Boston Red Sox.  The fallout was that super setup man Grilli (2.48 ERA in 2011, 2.91 ERA in 2012) would get the long-awaited bump to the ninth inning at the ripe old age of 37.  Thus the chain of events were put into play where yours truly tripped all over himself telling you all to run out and draft Grilli as the classic Fantasy Sports Boss "pass on drafting top tier closers and instead look for high K value plays" option.  Despite having to wait until the age when many players are already sitting at home on their recliners in retirement, Grilli looked like a classic instant success guy due to his very high K rate (an insane 90 in only 58.1 innings in 2012) and good control.  Hence why he was one of my most touted fantasy baseball sleeper candidates.

Fast forward to last Tuesday night where Grilli finished up his latest dominant outing by striking out the side against the Cincinatti Reds.  That scoreless outing lowered Grilli's ERA to a ridiculous 0.85 with a 0.76 WHIP.  The K rate has been nothing short of awesome as Grilli has punched out 54 guys in only 31.1 innings.  Add in a perfect 25/25 in saves and Grilli stakes the claim to being the best closer in fantasy baseball.  The numbers don't lie.  He has more than made good on all the favorable optimism I had on him entering 2013 with his ERA and K's.  The fact the Pirates always play close games yielded a major flow of saves as well.  Put it all together and Grilli was one sleeper made very good.  Hope you took my advice and remember this when I tell you again in 8 months to wait on drafting closers.


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