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Rays to go with closer by committee approach

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Grant Balfour's struggles have caused the Rays to shift their approach.
Grant Balfour's struggles have caused the Rays to shift their approach. (USATSI)

Stock Watch: Balfour among the Bear Market selections

Rays incumbent closer Grant Balfour was lit up for five runs in the ninth inning Sunday in a 5-0 loss to the Mariners. Monday morning, Rays manager Joe Maddon told reporters that he has decided to at least temporarily remove Balfour as the primary closer and will instead use a closer-by-committee approach (via Adam Berry).

Balfour, 36, has a 6.46 ERA and has issued 20 walks in 23 2/3 innings this season after signing with the Rays this past offseason. Maddon told reporters that Balfour will remain in the mix to get save chances and he just wants to take some pressure off him for a bit.

One would have to guess that lefty Jake McGee would get some chances. He has a 1.59 ERA, 0.78 WHIP and 33 strikeouts in 28 1/3 innings this season. He has seven holds and nary a blown save this season. He's also stranded 16 of the 17 runners he's inherited.

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