As some fantasy baseball managers anxiously wait for Edwin DiazJordan Romano and Andres Munoz to reclaim their role as MLB closers for their respective teams, other forward-thinking fantasy managers are busy collecting saves from some of their handcuffs. 

The following are recent updates on the condition and expected return to action for the previously mentioned closers.




Fantasy Baseball Closer Report: MLB Closers 2024 

Diaz is expected to be reinstated from the IL today (Thursday, June 13th) and as per New York Mets manager Carlos Mendoza, he will be the team's closer. Mendoza told reporters that Diaz appears to be both physically healthy and mentally ready to resume closing out games for the Mets. 

Yimi Garcia has three saves for the Toronto Blue Jays since Romano last pitched on May 29th and is the favorite to continue to see most of the save opportunities for the Jays in the short term. Genesis Cabrera has the only other save for the Jays during that time period, however, he recorded it in an extra inning game and shouldn’t be considered an option for regular save opportunities while Romano is sidelined. 

Chad Green has consistently been used in late-inning, high-leverage situations this season and although he is probably a better resource for holds, he does have two saves on the season and would be the better choice (as compared to Cabrera) for a save opportunity if Garcia were unavailable. As for Romano, he received an anti-inflammatory injection on his elbow on June 2nd and as per Sportsnet baseball columnist Shi Davidi, he has resumed throwing this week. As this article is being written, there has been no mention of a timetable for his return, but it appears his recovery is moving in the right direction.




Fantasy baseball managers rostering Andres Munoz received some good news regarding his back injury yesterday. An MRI and bone scan did not reveal any structural damage to Munoz’s back. Munoz received an injection on Tuesday to address his continued discomfort but unfortunately, he is still considered day-to-day. The Seattle Mariners used him this past Sunday, but it was in the eighth inning. He hasn’t pitched since then. 

Since Munoz’s back issue flared up last Tuesday, Ryne Stanek and Tayler Saucedo have each converted two saves. It should be noted that Saucedo’s first save was recorded in the game when Munoz’s injury first came to light, and Stanek had already pitched in that game. Saucedo’s second save came in the 10th inning of the Mariners’ win against the Royals. Stanek is probably your best bet for saves while Munoz’s status remains in flux.




MLB Relievers You Should Familiarize Yourself With

*Stats quoted are current as of the morning of June 12, 2024

Justin Martinez, Arizona Diamondbacks

Martinez has carved out a significant role in the Diamondbacks’ bullpen, seemingly nudging ahead of Kevin Ginkel in the team’s bullpen hierarchy. Paul Sewald is locked in as the Diamondbacks’ closer but it appears that Ryan Thompson has taken over eighth inning duties of late. Ginkel has been used primarily in the fifth and sixth innings of games during the month of June and the Diamondbacks have been turning to Martinez in the sixth and seventh innings recently. 

Martinez has a stellar 0.38 ERA and although he gives up way too many walks for our liking (5.3 BB/9), his WHIP is an acceptable 1.167. Martinez has completely shut down left-handed batters (.088 BAA) and right-handed batters haven’t done much better against him (.229 BAA). Martinez has some experience in closing out games as shown by his 14 minor league career saves (and one major league save).

Michael Tonkin, New York Yankees

The 34-year-old Tonkin has found a home in the Bronx. Pitching for his third team of the 2024 season, Tonkin has posted a 0.89 ERA and a 0.934 WHIP. Most of his outings for the Yanks have been multiple inning efforts, but with Clay Holmes unavailable, he picked up the first save of his long career against the Kansas City Royals on Monday night. Tonkin has modified his mechanics a bit and if he sticks with the Yankees and their +122-run differential, he’d be a potential good resource for holds moving forward.




Jorge Lopez, Chicago Cubs

Fresh off of his being DFA’ed by the Mets, the Cubs are giving Lopez a second chance. The Cubs signed him to a minor league deal and with Hector Neris uneven performance of late (8.10 ERA in his last seven appearances) and the Cubs’ bullpen having blown 14 saves this season, Lopez could eventually find himself pitching some meaningful late innings for the Cubbies. Lopez has a lot to prove after his recent meltdown, but he does have closer experience with 29 career saves under his belt.

Derek Law, Washington Nationals

Over the past week, Law pitched 4.1 innings and recorded two holds and struck out nine batters while walking none. Most of his appearances have come in middle relief and he has several multiple inning outings under his belt. He’s enjoying one of the best seasons of his career as Law has a 2.70 ERA. While his WHIP is a very modest 1.25, he has posted good ratios this season, striking out 40 batters in 40 innings pitched and he’s walked just 13 batters.