The Toronto Blue Jays have named Kevin Gregg the new primary closer. He takes over for Jason Frasor.
Gregg is off to a nice start for the Jays. He has gone 3 for 3 in save opportunities and has yet to allow an earned run and has an impressive 12.46 K/9. He had a problem with the homerun last year, but this year he is doing an excellent job keeping the ball on the ground in the early part of the season. He has a great groundball rate of 71.4%. This is well above his career average of 39.1%, so expect some regression here. His BABIP of .139 is not sustainable. I don’t expect him to pitch this well for the entire season, but I don’t expect him to be as bad as he was last year either. I think he should end up with an ERA around 3.70 and around 30 saves. He should be a nice pickup in your fantasy league.
This move could benefit Toronto in the long- term as well. If Gregg continues to pitch well he could bring back a nice return if Toronto falls out of the division race. General Managers tend to overrate the save stat so I think it is possible a team overpays for a reliever like Gregg. Toronto could do something similar to what Billy Beane did in the early 2000s and sell off closers for prospects. They also have Jason Frasor and Scott Downs who could net a nice return at the deadline if the team falls out of contention.