2020 MLB Draft Guide Player Profile: Keone Kela
Colby Conway takes an in-depth look at Pittsburgh Pirates closer Keone Kela to let fantasy baseball owners know what to expect during the 2020 MLB season.
The stretch run in 2019 was a dominant one for Pittsburgh reliever Keone Kela . In his last 23 innings of the season, he yielded just one earned run that spanned 18 appearances. For the year as a whole, he posted a 2.12 ERA across 29.2 innings, and he was statistically better than his 2018 season where he posted 24 saves across 52 innings. It was the first time in the past four years that he failed to eclipse a 30-percent strikeout rate, but he did post an impressive 89.5-percent strand rate. There are some concerns with Kela, but he has every opportunity to begin the year as the closer for the Pirates. Sure, it’s not as heralded a position as it once was, but saves are saves. Will he end the year as the team’s closer? Maybe not, but he’ll begin there.
Kela relies on his fastball and curveball, throwing them nearly exclusively. However, he does have a changeup that he’ll mix in every now and again. He has an impressive whiff rate on that pitch over the past two years, so maybe...