Often in the midst of your draft, you’ll find yourself deciding between a couple players at the same position. With Player Showdowns, we take two players who are closely ranked and have writers take a side and debate who should be selected first. Whose side will you be on?
We’ll offer up one Showdown per position (catcher, first base, second base, shortstop, third base, outfield, starter and reliever) here, and you can get dozens more by purchasing the 2019 Rotoworld Baseball Draft Guide. It’s an essential weapon to have in your arsenal at the draft table this spring.
Fantasy owners sounded alarm bells last month when new Reds manager David Bell said he wouldn’t use Iglesias in a traditional closer role, instead putting him into what he deemed the most crucial spots in the game, whenever they come up. The thing is, Iglesias has always been a guy used to get outs before the ninth inning more than most closers, having recorded more than three outs in nearly a quarter of his appearances in 2018 (16 of 66) and in nearly 30 percent of his appearances in 2017 (18 of 63). I’m not sure his role is going to change all that much, especially since he’s light-years better than anyone else in the Cincinnati bullpen. Robertson, on the other hand, is managed by Gabe Kapler, who allowed nine different relievers to notch saves in 2018 and who has no intention of changing how he juggles a bullpen (the Reds had just three different guys get saves last year). The Phillies also have Seranthony Dominguez and Hector Neris, two guys with closing experience that are much better than any secondary option the Reds have. I think Iglesias and Robertson will both pitch well, but if you’re asking me who winds up with more saves, it’s Iglesias. - Ryan Boyer (@RyanPBoyer)
This is a fascinating matchup between two pitchers with top-10 closer potential, but who also carry questions about how they’ll be used this year. I’m inclined to go with Robertson here, as the Phillies figure to push for something close to 90 wins. The Reds made some improvements this offseason, but they just don’t have the sort of safe floor or high ceiling as Philadelphia. Phillies manager Gabe Kapler doesn’t mind mixing things up in the closer role, but the Reds could get creative with their bullpen as well. The team has talked about using Iglesias in more high-leverage situations outside of the ninth inning. It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise, as new pitching coach Derek Johnson came over from the Brewers (where Josh Hader was used in that sort of role) during the offseason. The uncertainty is enough to drop Iglesias a couple spots on my draft board. Robertson also has more strikeout upside and has never had the sort of home run issues that Iglesias had last year. – D.J. Short (@djshort)