Closing Time: Derek Fisher returns, Trevor Cahill packs up

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For <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/mlb/players/10477/" data-ylk="slk:Derek Fisher">Derek Fisher</a>, the future might be now (AP)
For Derek Fisher, the future might be now (AP)

Get out the phone, dial up Derek Fisher. Goodbye, Fresno. Hello, Houston. Apparently the Astros need some clutch perimeter shooting, or a veteran on defense.

Scratch that, this Fisher is around for insurance, ready to go if George Springer (quad) needs a DL stint (or at least an extended absence). Remember, the Astros clinched the AL West around Flag Day. Fisher could also slot in left field; Marwin Gonzalez shifted to shortstop last week, taking over for the injured Carlos Correa.

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Fisher isn’t one of the premiere prospects in baseball, but we should at least term him “interesting.” The 23-year-old OF posted a .318/.384/.583 line at Triple-A, with 21 homers and 16 steals (albeit he’s been caught 10 times). He had a five-game trial in Houston a month back and looked the part — 5-for-18, two homers, a steal, three walks. Maybe this story is about to go somewhere. Fisher is owned in just seven percent of Yahoo leagues.

• Can Trevor Cahill succeed away from Petco Park? Can he buy a break on the road? We’re about to find out, because the Padres shipped Cahill to the contending Royals on Monday.

At first glance, Cahill’s solid 2017 season is a Petco mirage — a 0.72 ERA at home, a 5.75 ERA on the road. But we can’t take those stats at face value. Petco hasn’t been an extreme pitching park in the last year and change, and Cahill’s secondary stats paint a much more balanced view of his performance.

Cahill’s strikeout and walk percentages are only slightly worse on the road. His xFIP — suggested ERA, with a normalized homer rate — is 3.08 at home, 3.52 on the road. Even if you prefer something like FIP (normalized home runs aren’t for everyone), the split becomes 2.38 and 4.09 — far different than the jagged front-door splits Cahill shows.

Cahill will probably enter the rotation at Boston, so we’re out on that. But then it’s a home turn against Seattle and Yovani Gallardo — the could be fun. Cahill is owned in 30 percent of Yahoo leagues.

• Momentum is a thing in the chase for saves. The man holding the baton — the guy who recorded the last save — has a distinct advantage. So when Anthony Swarzak finished off the Cubs on Monday afternoon, we took notice. Maybe he’s the guy the Pale Hose will close with, after all.

Swarzak’s stepped forward this year after a pedestrian career. He had an ERA over five last year (albeit a sharp WHIP); this year he’s a 2.23 and 1.03 man, with over four strikeouts for every walk. The Cubs had a hit and walk against Swarzak, while he recorded four outs and struck out two.

To be fair, Swarzak is already 31 and he’ll be shopped around all month; Chicago doesn’t have a lot of veterans worth keeping. In the meantime, we’ll expect his 20-percent ownership tag to swell.

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