Description: Mariners RHP Taijuan Walker was scratched from his rehab start on Tuesday due to a stiffness in his shoulder, according to Greg Johns of mlb.com. He had trouble getting loose prior to the game.
Insight: Walker has been making good progress in his recovery from the shoulder discomfort he dealt with during spring training and was in line to rejoin the Mariners after Tuesday's start, but this will set him back into May if not longer.
Description: Boston closer Koji Uehara (shoulder) is expected to be available on Thursday, according to Sean McAdam of csnne.com.
Insight: Uehara rejoined the team Tuesday in Chicago after missing Boston's four-game set against the Yankees due to shoulder stiffness. He long-tossed Tuesday and will throw a bullpen Wednesday. Edward Mujica will serve as Boston's closer until Uehara is ready.
Description: Braves closer Craig Kimbrel wasn't available on Monday due to a sore shoulder, but hopes to be ready for tuesday, weather permitting.
Insight: Kimbrel pitched Friday and Saturday which might have been the cause of his soreness. He's the best closer in baseball and a fantasy stud. He's earned five saves this season with a 1.59 ERA, 0.706 WHIP and 12 Ks in 5 2/3 IP.
Description: Boston closer Koji Uehara has no structural damage in his shoulder, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.
Insight: Uehara will rejoin the team Tuesday in Chicago after missing Boston's four-game set against the Yankees due to shoulder stiffness. The Red Sox went to Edward Mujica for a save Friday and he converted it.
Description: Cincinnati closer Aroldis Chapman (head) threw his first bullpen session Monday since he was hit by a line drive in spring training and said he felt great, according to C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Insight: Chapman had to undergo surgery to repair facial fractures after being hit on March 19. He doesn't have any concussion symptoms but still isn't expected back for 4-6 weeks.
Description: Athletics lefty reliever Sean Doolittle picked up a save Sunday against the Mariners.
Insight: Oakland went to Luke Gregerson for a two-out save Saturday after using Doolittle to set up, and on Sunday manager Bob Melvin reversed it and used Doolittle in the ninth because the Mariners had lefties Kyle Seager, Logan Morrison, Dustin Ackley and Michael Saunders due up. Ryan Cook may also get a save chance here or there as part of Oakland's committee, which replaced the ineffective Jim Johnson.
Description: Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal has a 7.36 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP in 7 1/3 innings this season, but he has nailed down all four save chances.
Insight: He gave up two runs in a 5-1 game on April 7 and three runs over two innings in a tie game to lose Friday night. The Cubs got to him for a run on two hits Sunday but he finished off the 6-4 win. The 23-year-old should get things figured out and is in no danger of losing his job.
Description: Boston closer Koji Uehara is scheduled to long toss on Sunday. If he's unable to, the Red Sox will probably send him back to Boston to get his shoulder looked at. SOURCE: Sean McAdam, Comcast Sportsnet New England
Insight: Koji is battling a stiff shoulder, which is why Edward Mujica pitched the ninth inning last night against New York. The 39-year-old could be looking at a stint on the 15-day DL.
Description: Boston right-hander Edward Mujica will fill in at closer until Koji Uehara heals from a stiff shoulder.
Insight: Mujica had one very poor outing against Milwaukee (4 H, 4 ER in 2/3 of an inning) but has looked sharp in his other three appearances. He's definitely worth adding, especially if Uehara lands on the disabled list.
Description: Cincinnati closer Aroldis Chapman (head) will throw a bullpen session Monday, according to C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Insight: It will be his first bullpen since he had to undergo surgery to repair facial fractures caused by a line drive in spring training. He doesn't have any concussion symptoms but still isn't expected back for 4-6 weeks.
Description: Athletics closer Jim Johnson had another rocky outing Wednesday afternoon, allowing two hits, two walks and two earned runs in 1/3 of an inning.
Insight: The Athletics had a 4-2 lead going into the ninth, but Johnson coughed it up. The only reason he didn't get a blown save is because the A's removed him when it was still 4-3, though the runners on base still belonged to him. He has walked six batters and allowed nine hits and seven earned runs in 3 1/3 innings this season. Luke Gregerson is likely next in line for saves.
Description: Yankees closer David Robertson (groin) threw from flat ground Wednesday, according to Sweeny Murti of WFAN.
Insight: Robertson is eligible to return on April 22 and should be ready to be activated then unless he suffers a setback with his Grade 1 groin strain. Shawn Kelley will get most of the save chances in his absence.
Description: Athletics starter Jesse Chavez struck out nine and walked none over seven innings of one-run ball Wednesday afternoon at Minnesota.
Insight: The A's provided him with a four-run lead before he even threw a pitch and he was in line for the win but Jim Johnson had another ninth-inning meltdown. Chavez has picked up two no decisions this season but owns a 1.38 ERA, a 1.00 WHIP and a 13/2 K/BB in 13 innings. He had a 2.22 ERA and a 25/6 K/BB in 28 1/3 innings this spring.
Description: Yankees reliever Shawn Kelley earned his first career save on Monday against Baltimore.
Insight: Kelley was in the game because closer David Robertson was placed on the 15-day disabled list. Kelley looked good with a perfect 1-2-3 ninth inning and should get the next chance to close. Matt Thornton also has closing experience.
Description: Yankees closer David Robertson has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained groin.
Insight: It's uncertain who the Yankees will go with at closer now that Robertson is out. Shawn Kelley pitched a 1-2-3 ninth on Monday afternoon and is a strikeout-an-inning guy. On the other hand, Matt Thornton has closing experience from his time with the White Sox. Manager Joe Girardi should make a decision shortly.
Description: Chicago right-hander Nate Jones (hip) is expected to miss more than 15 days, according to Dan Hayes of csnchicago.com.
Insight: He strained a hip muscle on April 3. Jones was the favorite to win Chicago's closer job but manager Robin Ventura went with Matt Lindstrom and Jones then allowed four runs without getting an out in middle relief. His ERA and WHIP will remain infinite until he returns from the DL.
Description: Blue Jays interim closer Sergio Santos picked up a four-out save Saturday against the Yankees.
Insight: Santos got the last out of the eighth in a 1-0 game and Toronto put three runs on the board in the bottom of the inning, making it a pretty easy ninth for Santos, though he still managed to make things interesting by allowing a hit and walking a batter. The 30-year-old has gone 2-for-2 in save chances this season but put six men on base in two innings and was pulled from one save chance after walking the only batter he faced. Casey Janssen (back) will probably get the job back when he returns from the DL later this month.
Description: Royals starter Bruce Chen surrendered one (unearned) run and struck out seven batters in 6 1/3 innings Saturday against the White Sox.
Insight: The 36-year-old Chen has been around since 1998 and owns a career ERA of 4.47, but he had a 3.27 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP over 121 frames last year (3.61 ERA, 1.08 WHIP in 87 1/3 innings as a starter).
Description: It's 50/50 whether or not Mets closer Bobby Parnell (elbow) will undergo Tommy John surgery. SOURCE: ESPN New York
Insight: Either way, we aren't likely to see Parnell on a pitcher's mound any time soon. Jose Valverde will be New York's closer for the time being, though the Mets haven't provided him a save opportunity yet.
Description: White Sox reliever Nate Jones re-injured his left glute Thursday in a loss to Minnesota. SOURCE: Dan Hayes, Comcast Sportsnet Chicago
Insight: Once considered the favorite to fill Chicago's vacancy at closer, Jones has imploded, allowing four earned runs this season without recording an out. We're guessing he won't be available for Friday's game in Kansas City.
Description: According to the Houston Chronicle, Astros reliever Jesse Crain (shoulder) thinks early May is a realistic goal for his return to the majors.
Insight: Crain experienced shoulder soreness following his first bullpen session late last week. He had biceps surgery last October. The 32-year-old could take over the closer role (currently a committee) once he's healthy.
Description: According to the Associated Press, Reds manager Bryan Price said Wednesday that Jonathan Broxton (elbow) could return from the DL next week.
Insight: Broxton would step into the closer role almost immediately. "Once he gets reacquainted with being back here, he'll be that guy to hold down the fort until (Aroldis) Chapman's ready to go," Price said. Chapman was hit in the head by a line drive during spring training and had a plate inserted above his left eye. He'll miss all of April and some of May.
Description: Mariners starter Taijuan Walker (shoulder) will make a rehab start on Friday.
Insight: Walker will likely need three starts before he's ready to return to the big club. Think the end of April for his return. He had a 2.93 ERA and 160 strikeouts in 141 1/3 innings in the minors last season and went 1-0 with a 3.60 ERA, 1.000 WHIP and 12 Ks in 15 innings in three major league starts. He's got a bright future.
Description: Braves 23-year-old left-hander Alex Wood allowed one earned run and struck out five in seven innings Tuesday against the Brewers to pick up his first win of the season.
Insight: Wood gets a lot of ground balls and allowed just three home runs as a rookie last year. He had a 3.54 ERA, a 1.45 WHIP and 54 Ks in 56 innings as a starter and finished with a 3.13 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP in 77 2/3 innings.
Description: The Dodgers have placed set-up man Brian Wilson on the 15-day disabled list with a nerve irritation in his right elbow, according to Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register.
Insight: The good news is that he doesn't have any ligament damage. Wilson has only thrown 16 2/3 innings since the beginning of 2012 due to Tommy John surgery. He allowed three runs (two earned) without getting an out Sunday night at San Diego. Former Indians closer Chris Perez will likely move into the eighth-inning role for Los Angeles.
Description: Oakland's Jesse Chavez was scheduled to start Wednesday afternoon against the Indians, but he has been pushed back to Thursday due to Tuesday's rainout. SOURCE: Jane Lee, mlb.com.
Insight: Tuesday's scheduled starter Scott Kazmir will pitch the first game of a doubleheader Wednesday, and the Athletics will call someone up to start the second game. Chavez had a 2.22 ERA and a 25/6 K/BB over 28 1/3 innings this spring to win a spot in Oakland's rotation.