Who should close games for the Sox?
I think the Sox have some terrific options (in theory) but I’m leaning toward Kimbrel. His last year with the Cubs was INSANE and he just doesn’t seem to take to an eighth-inning role or multiple-inning stretch like a Hendriks or a Kopech. Hendriks seems like a 2.0 version of David Robertson, while Kimbrel has been struggling in a new role after dominating in his typical closer slot. If he blows a couple 9th-inning leads – and I don’t think he will – then we can recalibrate.
Hendriks is the “dance with the one that has brung ya” option that seems to step on your toes as often he dips you for a kiss. Lotta blown saves and some blown holds and general inconsistency. And the edge-of-seat “will be give up the gopher ball” is maddening this year. Would he be better suited for a multi-inning stretch instead of –
Kopech – wild-card option to close out a game. The stuff has looked great almost the entire year, but does he have enough in the tank to finish the year strong, and can he slide into high-leverage, end-of-game situations with regularity in September and beyond?
Is there another option (Bummer?) if the wheels fall off? Unlikely, but who knows?[yop_poll id=”9003″]
I’d like to see them have some flexibility in the event that one of them is unavailable (or the threat of a homer is very loud), so I’m all for judgment-free dabbling. If and when they try Kimbrel, it’s more important that Hendriks has converted a couple of opportunities in a row so it doesn’t generate unnecessary panic.
Jim, are you going to post the results after the Oakland series? That’s probably enough time, unless you want to wait until after the weekend, or whatever.
The facts that Kimbrel has been doing this for a lot longer and Hendriks is more likely to go multiple innings leads me to think that Kimbrel would be a better option. But I completely agree with you, Jim, that the switch should come after Hendriks has had a run of success, so as not to hurt his confidence.
Use Kimbrel against fastball power hitters such as the Yankee sluggers
Use Hendriks against the lesser type hitters, he simply overpowers them
Use this formula based on the opponent’s slated batting order regardless of the inning involved
Also, if one guy starts getting shelled, maybe pull him lol.
Don’t even joke about Bummer closing.