Candidate to close Helsley was mentioned by manager Mike Shildt on Wednesday as one of the Cardinals' top candidates to close going forward, Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat reports.
Impact Kwang-Hyun Kim opened the year as the Cardinals' closer, but the team has since decided to move him into the rotation. With Jordan Hicks opting out of the season, the ninth inning is wide open in St. Louis, and Helsley was one of a large group of candidates who are being considered for the job. Helsley has closer velocity, with his fastball averaging just shy of 98 mph, though he hasn't necessarily achieved closer-worthy results through his first 39.1 big-league innings. His 2.75 ERA is quite strong, but it's come with a 4.04 FIP and a 5.04 xFIP, as his 21.1 percent strikeout rate is rather unimpressive.
AUGUST 5 • ROTOWIRE