Friday, February 13, 2015


When it comes to the closer position in fantasy baseball, there is pretty much no such thing as a sure thing.  With turnover always being very high in the ninth inning due to injuries, poor performance leading to demotions, and traded shaking things up constantly, the closers who successfully hold onto the job for more than a season or two are very rare indeed.  One who has achieved such as distinction but in a quiet manner is Miami Marlins closer Steve Cishek who has put together three straight All-Star campaigns on a team that continues to rebuild.  With the Marlins now looking like they are ready to contend again in 2015, Cishek will be trusted to man the ninth inning again in more pressurized situations.  So with that said let’s take another look at Cishek and see what he could supply his owners this season.

First let’s look at the numbers from the last three seasons for Cishek which have all been terrific:

2012:  2.69 ERA 1.30 WHIP 68 K/63.2 IP 15 S

2013:  2.33 ERA 1.08 WHIP 74 K/69.2 IP 34 S
2014:  3.17 ERA 1.21 WHIP 84 K/65.1 IP 39 S

In looking at the numbers, it is easy to see how dominant a closer Cishek has developed into.  Already possessing a submarine-like delivery that makes the baseball tough to pick up for the hitter, Cishek can ratchet up the fastball to near triple-digits which shows in his very high K Rate.  Cishek posted his best K rate in 2014 as he punched out a monstrous 84 batters in only 65.1 innings.  The ERA inched up a bit to 3.17 after two straight seasons under 3.00 but that was just due to some vagaries with BABIP and strand rate.  Cishek is every bit as good as any closer in the game not named Craig Kimbrel or Greg Holland and absolutely deserves to be one of the top 7 or 8 stoppers to be selected in drafts as they numbers tell the story there.  Making matters even more positive, the Marlins fully intend to content this season which means Cishek won’t find his name in trade rumors as was the case seemingly for the last three years.  He is the closer for April all the way to the end of the season and will use his big ballpark to help him post stellar ratios and save totals again. 

When you put it all together, Steve Cishek is a guy who can easily anchor your closers and the fact he comes cheaper than some of the bigger name stoppers makes him even more of a smart investment to take advantage of this season.  The guy is here to stay as a top-of-the-line stopper and 2015 should be no different. 

2015 PROJECTION:  2.54 ERA 1.11 WHIP 81 K 37 S


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