Arodys Vizcaino was awarded the Braves' closer role over Jim Johnson and Jason Grilli to begin the 2016 season. The hard-throwing righty got off to a solid start and put together a productive first half of the season before ultimately struggling in the second half, largely due to multiple nagging injuries that landed him on the disabled list. He finished the season with a 4.42 ERA, but much of that can be attributed to his brief, disastrous return from the DL in mid-August. Prior to his first DL stint on July 16, the 26-year-old posted a 3.00 ERA with 10 saves and a 47:22 K:BB over 36 innings. Walks have always been an issue for Vizcaino and he will need to improve his command in order to become a truly reliable reliever. The Braves will likely enter 2017 with Jim Johnson as their closer, leaving Vizcaino to battle it out with Mauricio Cabrera for the team's top setup role.
Vizcaino struck out two in a perfect inning of work during Sunday's Grapefruit League game against the Cardinals. The 26-year-old has been impressive this spring, posting a 1.29 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 10:2 K:BB through seven innings -- but most importantly, he's been healthy. Vizcaino will open the season setting up Jim Johnson, making him a safe bet for fantasy value in leagues that reward holds, but if the veteran gets dealt over the summer, Vizcaino could find himself back in the closer role.
Vizcaino hit 98 mph with his fastball while striking out two in an inning of work during Friday's Grapefruit League game against the Red Sox, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. He did give up a solo home run to Andrew Benintendi, but otherwise it's been a great start to the spring for Vizcaino, who's whiffed five batters in his first two appearances. The shoulder injury that derailed his second half last year doesn't appear to be an issue for him heading into 2017, and Vizcaino should begin the season as the Braves' primary setup man.
Vizcaino (shoulder) will set up Jim Johnson if he's healthy to begin the season, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. Braves manager Brian Snitker squashed any thought of a spring competition for the ninth-inning role Friday, naming Johnson his closer and saying the focus for Vizcaino was just to stay off the DL, something the 26-year-old has yet to do in his big league career. "(Vizcaino) hasn't done it in a long time. Viz has just got to be healthy. We just hope we get him through [the spring], and he's healthy and back to being like he was when I got here last year in May," Snitker said. Johnson is far from an elite closing option and could always get traded, so Vizcaino might yet rack up some saves in 2017, but at this point you should wait and see how he looks in Grapefruit League action before considering him even as an option to stash on your reserve list.
Vizcaino (shoulder) agreed to a one-year, $1.55 million with the Braves on Friday, avoiding arbitration, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports. He is resting his ailing shoulder this winter, but is expected to be ready for spring training. Vizcaino is expected to enter the year as a setup man, and could be in the mix for saves if Jim Johnson falters in the ninth inning.
Vizcaino (shoulder) will not pitch this winter, but he is expected to pitch without restrictions in spring training, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports. He ended the year on the DL with a shoulder injury, but it sounds like he should be fine for 2017. Jim Johnson and Mauricio Cabrera will likely open the year ahead of Vizcaino in the pecking order for saves, but it is a potentially volatile situation.