It's tough to quantify the relief pitcher market when Alex Colomé recorded 12 saves in 21 outings last year with a 0.81 ERA and 0.94 WHIP over 22.1 innings of work. Of course, with more teams going the way of an analytical approach to high leverage, closers may be a dying breed. His 16:8 K:BB in these innings along with a 4.44 SIERA might contribute to their aversion giving Colomé a large contract entering his Age-32 season. 

When perusing his underlying numbers on Fangraphs, Colomé notched a career best 15.3 swinging strike percentage despite the low strikeout total in 2020 while giving up less contact (70.3 percent) and less contact in the strike zone (82 percent Z-Contact rate). He benefits from the truncated season, but it's not like he imploded in the ninth inning either. 

According to Statcast, Colomé yielded 64 batted ball events giving up two barrels (3.1 percent), an 87.4 MPH average exit velocity and 32.8 hard hit rate. His expected numbers of a 3.04 expected ERA (xERA), .214 expected batting average (xBA) and .266 expected weighted on-base average (xwOBA) defend his strong season. 

As for his arsenal, Colomé increased his cutter usage for a second straight season fueling more ground balls. Here's how his pitches fared using Statcast numbers:

  • Colomé Cutter: 71.6 percent usage, .193 xBA, .212 xwOBA, 32.9 whiff percentage, 18.8 K%, 15.1 put away percent

  • Colomé 4-Seam Fastball: 28.4 percent usage, .304 xBA, .423 xwOBA, 22.2 whiff percentage, 14.3 K%, 14.3 put away percent

Heading to Minnesota could help offset the pending fastball regression, especially if Colomé can induce ground balls to his new teammate, Andrelton Simmons . For an idea of how Colomé attacks hitters, here's his zone profile displaying batted ball event rates along with his expected batting averages:

Taking his pitches a step further, Brooks Baseball provides breakdowns by pitch type in terms of swinging strike percentage (SwStr%) and ground ball percentage. Here's Colomé's numbers from 2020: 

  • Colomé Cutter: 19 SwStr%, 55.2 GB%

  • Colomé 4-Seam Fastball: 6.7 SwStr%, 30.8 GB%

Reports already indicate Colomé will work in a shared high leverage role with Taylor Rogers and Tyler Duffey . As long as Colomé can maintain his cutter effectiveness, he should be able to remain in save situations. 

Expanding his sample further, here's his numbers from the second half of 2019 through and including last season: 

  • Colomé 2H 2019-through-2020: 3-4, 22 Saves, 47.2 IP, 44:21 K:BB, 2.45 ERA, 4.39 SIERA, 1.28 WHIP, 50.4 GB%, 21 K%, 10 BB%, 14.4 SwStr%, 71.6 Contact%, 84.4 Z-Contact%

Within this time frame, Colomé's tied for eighth in saves with Brandon Workman . His SIERA still appears a bit dicey, but the ground ball rate remains just over 50 percent. Now for the last three years: 

  • Colomé Last 3 Years: 13-10, 55 Saves, 154 Games, 152.1 IP, 144:52 K:BB, 2.66 ERA, 3.88 SIERA, 1.10 WHIP, 23 K%, 8.3 BB%, 13.7 SwStr%

During the last three seasons, Colomé tied Kirby Yates for 10th overall with 55 saves. Fantasy owners hope this trend continues:

Again, Colomé will be used based on situational match-ups in 2021 in Minnesota, not as a sole closer like in Chicago since his arrival with the White Sox. Heed his indicators (SIERA, xERA), the reliance on the cutter and hope he achieves his projection sets: 

Maximizing his usage patterns could insulate from major migration to the mean so paying for the ATC projection could be the most prudent approach. Pay attention to his spring results and how the Twins talk about his role but manager Rocco Baldelli formed his high leverage strategy with Tampa Bay. Weigh all these factors before paying full price for Colomé in upcoming drafts. 

Statistical Credits:

THE BAT courtesy of Derek Carty

ATC courtesy of Ariel Cohen

ZiPS courtesy of Dan Szymborsk