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Closing...Who's Who?

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  • Closing...Who's Who?

    2006 is upon us and the Atlanta Braves are without a closer...for now.

    Bobby Cox has stated that the front runner for the closer's job is Chris Reitsma. He has been in the closer's role before ,but well he has just been..."BLAH!!!". He had a great chance last year to take the role and thrive in it. But he was...very marginal. Some may blame it on an injury he suffered late in the year, but even before that as a closer, he just wasn't dominent. I think he just doesn't have the closer mind-set. He may just be a middle reliever by nature .He would really like to be closer however. And frankly, he is deserving. He has been Atlanta's most consistant reliever over the past 2 years. Even if he has tailed off at the end of the season, he has still been the most consistant. So of course he is the favorite.

    Bobby Cox's 2nd choice is Oscar Villareal. He had a spectacular rookie year,but was then plauged with injuries ,due to being over-worked. According to all reports ,he has returned to form. This year ,he is going to be a top member of the pen, and a candidate for the closer role. However,it is unlikely he will attain the job. He will be out of spring training at he WBC, meaning Cox will only have a limited chance to view him in real games. I'm not saying it's impossible, just un-likely.

    Another choice is rushing the future with Joey Devine. All reports say he is heaven, just needs another pitch. I assume he and McDowall sre working on a change-up. He may be ready for the challenge, but I believe he needs to master the change-up before he's put in such a pressure filled role.

    The new choice and a suprising one at that, is Anthony Lerew. According to reports, he has developed a new pitch, a split-finger ball. He had trouble locating this pitch late last year, then a few days ago Roger McDowall recomended he start throwing it low and away. Like magic, his control became magnificent, and his pitch had remarkable movement. So much so Bobby Cox was highly impressed. Even his velocity increased into the high 90's. Plus this guy has the mentality. I mean he throws hard. Has a bit of an arrogant attitude. And he's been bit by a snake. If that's not whacky enough to be a good closer. I don't know what is.

    You can pretty much hold stock in that these guys will be in the bullpen. As for closer it's just a matter of prefference.
    Simply... TAKING BACK THE EAST IN 2007

  • #2
    I'd look to see Rietsma as the closer at the beginning of the year, with the role being opened up to competition if (the pesemistic would say "when") he struggles. He had a good stretch last year but faded as the season went on, so I wouldn't doubt it if someone else steps up later in the year.
    Every passing hour brings the Solar System forty-three thousand miles closer to Globular Cluster M13 in Hercules -- and still there are some misfits who insist that there is no such thing as progress.

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    • #3
      Reitsma is the only guy in the bullpen who has shown he can be a consistent closer on the Major League level. I would give him the job to start off and if he tails off give it to the next deserving guy.
      2nd member of the Peter Moylan Fan Club

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