Based on the results from the Miami Marlins recently sweeping the Washington Nationals, it appears that Tanner Scott may have taken over as our new closer. This is another move in what appears to be a carousel of closing changes. It’s something that I covered recently in fact. There seems to be a new closer in Little Havana…or is there?
Tanner Scott might be the new Miami Marlins closer.
Tanner Scott picking up a pair of saves recently seemed to have come out of left field. He did it again last night however in an impressive win over the Houston Astros. I mean he has a 4.24 ERA on the season and it’s hardly impressive to say the least. The upside however is that he actually has a 2.96 FIP and 13.9 K/9. Is that what made manager Don Mattingly pick him to handle those save opportunities?
It doesn’t appear as if other options are getting the job done. There’s Cole Sulser and his 3.97 ERA and 3.31 FIP with 10.3 K/9. There was a time this season when it appeared that Sulser was indeed The Fish’s new closer. That didn’t quite work out though.
Dylan Floro was another contender for the closing job as he had it last season, but he was terrible upon his return from injury this season. He now has a 3.97 ERA/4.99 FIP in 11.1 innings but more importantly he has 1,6 K/9. That latter part is pretty bizarre, as it’s a really bad strikeout rate. Last season his strikeout rate was 8.7 K/9. It’s unclear what happened to Floro and the only hope is that he just needs more time after injury to get himself in order.
It’s not hard to see how Tanner Scott with his elite strikeout rate emerged as the top closing candidate here. The only issue is that there’s someone on the injured list that is ready to return…Anthony Bender. Bender may just be the biggest competition for Scott yet.
The interesting thing about Bender is that he was elite for a while last season with a 2.79 ERA/3.19 FIP in 61.1 innings and had 10.4 K/9. This season he wasn’t as sharp, as he has a 4.50 ERA/5.36 FIP with 8.4 K/9, but it’s also possible that his injury affected him, considering he still has an elite fastball velocity 0f 98.1 mph. Scott by the way has 96.3 mph. What happens when Bender comes back off of the IL?
Is Tanner Scott the new closer of the Miami Marlins? I think so, but Anthony Bender is still an option too, but only if he pitches well upon coming back from the IL. If Bender struggles however, I see Scott remaining the closer going forward.