Monday, March 30, 2015

Joe Girardi should name Andrew Miller as Yankees' closer

Photo credit: Getty Images
When the Yankees signed Andrew Miller to a four-year, $36 million contract this offseason, most assumed he would settle in behind Dellin Betances as a highly paid setup man. With Betances struggling to duplicate his 2014 velocity so far in spring training, however, Joe Girardi would be wise to turn to Miller to close games early in the season while Betances tries to recover the 100 mph fastball that fueled his 1.40 ERA last season.

Many managers prefer to avoid using left-handers in the closer’s role for two reasons: Most lefties have poor platoon splits, which makes protecting a small lead against multiple right-handed hitters in the ninth inning a risky proposition. In addition, many bullpens have only one left-handed reliever to use as a specialist, and most are used before the ninth inning.

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