Rays ready to make a change at closer?


Grant Balfour turned a 5-0 game into a loss on Sunday and it may be time that the Tampa Bay Rays made a change at the back end of their bullpen.

“He’s our closer as of today,” Rays manager Joe Maddon told reporters.

“Even if I was going to change anything, I wouldn’t tell you guys anyhow.” Maddon added.

Jake McGee or Juan Carlos Oviedo could soon replace Balfour as the Rays closer. Balfour had two outs in the inning and was ahead 0-2 to the third. Instead it quickly turned from there.

“That’s the disappointing part,” Balfour said. “I’m a couple inches away from snapping off a curveball and striking out the side today and you’re not going to ask me a single question. You’re the best player in baseball because you struck out the side. Instead, I’m standing here because I gave up five. So I’ll wear it and I’ll be back tomorrow.”

In 24 games this season Balfour has a 6.46 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP to go along with nine saves. It’s a far cry from the 2.56 ERA and 1.05 WHIP he posted over the last two seasons in Oakland while picking up 62 saves.

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