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Koji Uehara 2012 outlook


ssmarsh

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Hard to go over 50% really. While Fuentes might have been awful last year, I'm pretty sure Balfour is ahead of him on the depth chart. I think Koji is a better pitcher than all of those involved, but he should have been the closer over Gregg all of last year in Baltimore as well.

Oakland needs to up the trade value on both Fuentes and Balfour prior to the trade deadline, so I wouldn't be surprised if they all see time in the role. But I think they will and should ultimately want De Los Santos to take over the job.

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Uehara will be 37 by the time the season starts, with a total of 13 big league saves to his credit, and 33 saves in Japan. Not sure why the A's would put him in the closers role at this point. I believe the pecking order will be Fuentes, Balfour, De Los Santos based purely on experience, with DLS being the long term solution. Whomever is the closer will have a short leash.

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Actually Joey Devine is the frontrunner coming into spring training. But given his injury history it might not be a long tenure. Uehara I expect will take on a Balfour role with the team and be used as a specialist. Fuentes I expect will be the closer if Devine fails in ST. They'll use the time between then and the deadline to establish trade value, dump him and De Los Santos depending on his development would be given the job around the summer.

A's also have interest in Mike Gonzalez as well so he could be in the mix. All in all you really probably shouldn't be speculating on the A's closer situation. They are going to lose alot of games and the situation as a whole will change alot I expect throughout the season.

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Actually Joey Devine is the frontrunner coming into spring training. But given his injury history it might not be a long tenure. Uehara I expect will take on a Balfour role with the team and be used as a specialist. Fuentes I expect will be the closer if Devine fails in ST. They'll use the time between then and the deadline to establish trade value, dump him and De Los Santos depending on his development would be given the job around the summer.

A's also have interest in Mike Gonzalez as well so he could be in the mix. All in all you really probably shouldn't be speculating on the A's closer situation. They are going to lose alot of games and the situation as a whole will change alot I expect throughout the season.

i wasn't aware the a's had named a closer or even a "frontrunner" for the job - do you have a link?

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Not a link so much as following Susan Slusser tweets. She stated a few times that the organization would like him to win the job and will give him a chance to do so in ST. He's barely mentioned right now mostly because he is coming off a season where he wasn't fully back from his 2010 injury so people forget about him. Again given his injury history its hard to imagine it will come to fruition but its worth noting he's a guy people should watch in ST.

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Not a link so much as following Susan Slusser tweets. She stated a few times that the organization would like him to win the job and will give him a chance to do so in ST. He's barely mentioned right now mostly because he is coming off a season where he wasn't fully back from his 2010 injury so people forget about him. Again given his injury history its hard to imagine it will come to fruition but its worth noting he's a guy people should watch in ST.

i certainly think he's a candidate for the job and shouldn't be ignored at all, but this smells to me of a true spring training battle where the best man will get the first shot at the job (and this might change hand a lot during the season). devine has a shot, fuentes has a shot, balfour has a shot, de los santos has a shot, if koji comes in he certainly has a shot, probably another name or two will creep into the picture, but i don't see an edge at this point, pretty wide open.

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Devine won't stay healthy. That's the only thing I'm 100% certain about in the A's bullpen. He's like the Rich Harden of relievers.

either way - if you get involved in this mess I agree Devine is the guy to have at the outset - presuming he's ready to go

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Devine won't stay healthy. That's the only thing I'm 100% certain about in the A's bullpen. He's like the Rich Harden of relievers.

Although it could be easier to monitor/limit his workload ... like how the Cubs treated Kerry Wood a few years back.

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