Capps replaces Nathan as Twins’ closer

Minnesota Twins’ Joe Nathan pitches against the New York Yankees during their MLB American League Division Series playoff baseball game in New York October 9, 2009. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES SPORT BASEBALL)

The Twins have decided to replace Joe Nathan with Matt Capps at closer according to Kelsie Smith via Twitter.


Manager Ron Gardenhire and pitching coach Rick Anderson met with Nathan after Saturday’s game — a game in which he blew his second straight save opportunity — and decided it would be a good idea to put him in less stressful situations. It’s the right move, as Nathan simply hasn’t looked like himself thus far. Capps has struggled in his own right his last two outings, but he was pitching well before that and has the tools to succeed in the ninth inning. Assuming his stuff does come around, we would expect Nathan to eventually get his job back, but it’s not a given.

Nathan apparently said that he was hurting the team by trying to close and will attempt to regain his form. Maybe with less pressure and more time to recover from his 2010 Tommy John surgery, he will return to his old position and continue to close out games for the Twins. It wasn’t that long ago that Nathan was viewed as the best closer in the game.

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