Jason Motte (RP-STL)
Remember when Tony LaRussa refused to officially appoint anyone as the Cardinals’ closer during their 2011 championship run? Jason Motte had other ideas as he took advantage of every opportunity he was given and dominated the postseason that year. In 2012, Motte was the official closer for St. Louis and all he did was lead the league with 42 saves on top of ridiculous 0.91 WHIP and 10.8 strikeouts per nine innings. However, he never threw a pitch in 2013 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. Now he is working his way back and will likely need to begin the 2014 season on the disabled list.
Granted, relief pitchers usually do not require as much time come back from Tommy John surgery. But he probably won't have enough time during spring training to fullybuild up his endurance. Even when Motte does come back, he will likely be setting up for Trevor Rosenthal who emerged as the Cardinals’ new closer during the 2013 playoffs. When and if Motte does come back, he can be a solid late round Roto league option thanks to his low ERA and WHIP along with tremendous K/9 ratio. Plus, if Rosenthal struggles and is removed from closing duties, Motte will probably be the first in line to reclaim his job.
If you are wondering the best way to evaluate arms such as Motte so that you can find these “gems” on the mound, I've got just the thing for you. It's the 2014 Fantasy Alarm Draft Guide powered by BaseballGuys. There are a couple of articles detailing exactly how you can go about finding bargains on players who are on the comeback trail in 2014.