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Closer Report: Fishing for saves

When last we saw this man, he was a 28-year-old Marlins reliever named "Leo Nunez." But that was 10 months ago. He's now a 30-year-old named "Juan Carlos Oviedo," and he's preparing to return from an eight-week suspension for age and identity fraud.

Basically this situation is JUST LIKE when we all learned that 26-year-old fantasy expert Mike Harmon was actually a 28-year-old named "Brad Evans."

Oviedo is scheduled to pitch an inning for the Single-A Jupiter Hammerheads on Monday, and he'll be eligible to return to the big leagues in two weeks, on July 23. He'll presumably pitch in a setup role initially, but let's recall that Miami closer Heath Bell has been a first-half disaster. Bell heads to the break with a 6.75 ERA, a 1.82 WHIP and six blown saves. He's allowed multiple runs in 10 of his 40 appearances, including a loss on Sunday in which he gave up two walks, three hits and three runs.

In light of Bell's on-going struggles, Miami manager Ozzie Guillen sounds eager to get last year's closer back into the late-inning mix. These were a few of Ozzie's Oviedo-related comments from Sunday, via the Miami Herald:

"I will [treat] that as a big trade we make for the [playoff] run. He's going to help the bullpen. A day like today, he'll take Bell's spot. [Other times] we'll see how Bell's throwing and we'll flip-flop each for whatever reason. It's going to be a big lift. Hopefully, he'll throw the ball like he has in the past."

So it appears we have a new handcuff to consider. Oviedo is only owned in three percent of Yahoo! leagues at the moment, but he clearly belongs on your radar. As soon as he returns to the Fish, his (new) name will appear next to Bell's on the index below …

Job Security Index

30. Los Angeles Angels — Ernesto Frieri & Scott Downs
29. Chicago Cubs — Carlos Marmol, Shawn Camp, James Russell
28. New York Mets — Bobby Parnell, Jon Rauch
27. Seattle — Tom Wilhelmsen, Brandon League, Charlie Furbush
26. Miami — Heath Bell, Steve Cishek
25. Houston — Brett Myers, Brandon Lyon
24. Minnesota — Matt Capps, Jared Burton, Glen Perkins
23. Boston — Alfredo Aceves, Scott Atchison
22. Detroit — Jose Valverde, Joaquin Benoit
21. Chicago White Sox — Addison Reed, Matt Thornton
20. Washington — Tyler Clippard, Sean Burnett
19. Arizona — JJ Putz, David Hernandez
18. Kansas City — Jonathan Broxton, Greg Holland, Aaron Crow, Kelvin Herrera
17. San Francisco — Santiago Casilla, Sergio Romo
16. Toronto — Casey Janssen, Francisco Cordero
15. San Diego — Huston Street, Luke Gregerson
14. Colorado — Rafael Betancourt, Matt Belisle, Rex Brothers
13. Milwaukee — John Axford, Francisco Rodriguez
12. Oakland — Ryan Cook, Grant Balfour
11. Tampa Bay — Fernando Rodney, Kyle Farnsworth
10. New York Yankees — Rafael Soriano, David Robertson
9. Baltimore — Jim Johnson, Pedro Strop
8. Pittsburgh — Joel Hanrahan, Jason Grilli, Juan Cruz
7. Cleveland — Chris Perez, Vinnie Pestano
6. Cincinnati — Aroldis Chapman, Sean Marshall
5. St. Louis — Jason Motte, Mitchell Boggs
4. Los Angeles Dodgers — Kenley Jansen, Ronald Belisario
3. Texas — Joe Nathan, Mike Adams
2. Atlanta — Craig Kimbrel, Kris Medlen
1. Philadelphia — Jonathan Papelbon, Antonio Bastardo

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If rehab appearances at Single-A go well this week for Matt Capps (shoulder), he might just make his return to the Minnesota 'pen on Friday. Of course Capps figures to be a trade chip for the Twins, so we may not have seen the end of this Burton-Perkins nonsense. Please stay tuned.

Greg Holland, Aaron Crow and Tim Collins have all had a few hiccups in recent appearances (check the game logs for details), so Kelvin Herrera makes another appearance on the Index. It's been mostly ground-balls and Ks from Herrera this season — 58.3 ground-ball percentage, 98.7 mph average fastball — and he takes a 1.11 WHIP into the break. The Royals are reportedly interested in making a Jonathan Broxton deal, so one of the KC understudies is about to inherit the ninth.

Frank Francisco (oblique) should begin his rehab assignment on Wednesday, so he could be back in New York shortly after the break. Take your time, Frank Frank. Bobby Parnell has been excellent over the past month; he's allowed just two hits and no walks over his last 8.1 innings, striking out seven, earning two saves.

Sergio Romo is doing all he can to keep the Giants' closer situation uncomplicated, saying all the right things, per his usual. Romo picked up a rogue save on Friday, as Santiago Casilla is dealing with a blister on his right hand. Casilla has blown three of his last four save chances and Romo has been his typical brilliant self (0.72 ERA, 0.72 WHIP, 30 Ks in 25.0 IP). With ratios like Romo's, the guy is useful even in a non-closing role, yet he's still available in 61 percent of Yahoo! leagues. Make the add if you can.
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