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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

2017 FANTASY BASEBALL CLOSING TIME: PAT NESHEK PUTTING HEAT ON HECTOR NERIS

The ninth inning has been one big ulcer for the Philadelphia Phillies and the fantasy baseball community as a whole this season.  From the trainwreck that was Jeanmar Gomez to the quick installation and demotion of Joaquin Benoit, the Phillies then turned to the talented Hector Neris to be the man.  I personally have been a big fan of Neris in saying he should have been given a shot earlier given his 11.00-plus K/9 in 2016 dominant 2.58 ERA last season.  The one caveat was whether or not Neris had the mental capacity to close games and that ultimately would determine the direction he would take.  Unfortunately, it looks like Neris has issues in that department as he has been quite hittable since moving into the closer role which included a 4.97 ERA in April when he was given the gig.  While May was good overall (0.77 ERA), Neris has hit the skids again as he gave up two runs in .2 IP June 3rd and then was pulled from a save chance last night due to giving up two hits in three batters.  Before things got out of hand, setup man Pat Neshek was called in to finish things off; which he did by getting the last two outs.  While Neshek was not endorsed as the Phils closer moving forward, it is undeniable how good he has been in setup with a composite 0.82 and 0.77 WHIP on the season.  Neshek has been one of the best setup men in baseball for years and his funky deliver makes him a decent closing bet.  Neris has not been putrid but he also has not been terrific either.  This is a situation which needs to be watched closely and so Neshek should be picked up in all formats as a hedge.  Even if he is not named closer, Neshek can help you given how good he has been this season.


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