When the offseason begins, targeting an inconsistent-yet-dominant reliever like Dellin Betances may be your best bet.
Dellin Betances is a great pitcher for the New York Yankees. Although he’s struggled somewhat in the closer role recently — he’s been scored on in four of his past seven outings — he’s still a dominant reliever.
All players, no matter how good they are, will have a run of games where they struggle. It’s not a big deal and it’s not a situation that necessitates selling a player. It’s just a minor slump.
Which is why, if you have owners in your league who have a tendency to panic, jumping on Betances during the offseason is a good idea. He’ll come cheaper than usual, due to these struggles, combined with a few other factors.
For one, Betances struggled as a closer, which is not a role he has a lot of experience in. This will make some owners want to sell, as a lot of owners look at saves as the ultimate need from a relief pitcher.
However, a lot of leagues also score holds. While they aren’t as sexy of a statistic, winning a category is winning a category.
Betances is a pitcher who should score a lot of holds for a number of years, as the Yankees have the look of a team with a chance to win a lot of games moving forward.
Betances should get a ton of hold chances, which can be especially valuable — even though it’s a tough category to predict from year to year, especially with guys moving into and out of setup roles frequently.
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Betances is also a very valuable asset in strikeouts. He has 91 of them this season, which is tied for fifth amongst pitchers who are primarily relief pitchers.
Strikeouts are a major category in fantasy baseball and Betances has long been a top tier strikeout pitcher. His K rate should not be expected to drop as he goes forward.
Finally, the Yankees have a crowded bullpen. While that can present a problem, Betances has gone to four All-Star games. He’s an accomplished relief pitcher who should have no problem carving out an important role in the bullpen next season.
With the Yankees in the middle of a playoff race, they’re going to be quicker to rotate their bullpen based on who’s hot. Over the course of a full season next year, they should be more patient when a player goes into a slump.
Some dynasty leagues allow teams to make trades in the offseason. The year’s conclusion after will be the perfect time to jump on Betances if the manager who has him is worried.