Closing Time 9/6: Ranking the Top 30 Closers Every Wednesday
If you are reading this, hopefully you are in the beginning stages of your playoff run, or at least in the running for taking down a roto league crown. Also, hopefully your RP situation is solid enough where you don’t have too many worries. But in case you do, hopefully there’s some potential on the waiver wire still, despite being little to no change in most teams closing situation lately. Being that we are in the last month of the season, not a whole lot of changes will be made to this list, with most of them being in those bottom two wildcard tiers.
TIER 1: Nothing Compares 2 U
1. Kenley Jansen (Los Angeles Dodgers)—Pedro Baez, Tony Watson
2. Craig Kimbrel (Boston Red Sox)—Addison Reed, Matt Barnes
3. Corey Knebel (Milwaukee Brewers)—Anthony Swarzak, Jacob Barnes
- Kenley Jansen was quiet this week as the Dodgers scuffled, but still picked up a save. Craig Kimbrel is on pace for his highest inning total since 2011 but hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down yet. Corey Knebel continues to prove he is among the league’s top closers, picking up 3 saves and 5 K’s in 3 scoreless outings.
TIER 2: Save Tonight
6. Sean Doolittle (Washington Nationals)—Brandon Kintzler, Ryan Madson
8. Dellin Betances (New York Yankees)—David Robertson, Aroldis Chapman
9. Alex Colome (Tampa Bay Rays)—Steve Cishek, Tommy Hunter
10. Wade Davis (Chicago Cubs)—Carl Edwards Jr., Pedro Strop
11. Roberto Osuna (Toronto Blue Jays)—Ryan Tepera, Danny Barnes
12. Raisel Iglesias (Cincinnati Reds)—Drew Storen, Michael Lorenzen
13. Cody Allen (Cleveland Indians)—Bryan Shaw, Joe Smith
14. Brad Hand (San Diego Padres)—Kirby Yates, Phil Maton
- Not a lot of movement here, but I think Ken Giles deserved a small boost after his dominate week while Felipe Rivero struggled. Giles has been awesome all season long, with his only real problem being lack of usage/save chances. He’s really put it all together this year and his much improved fastball command has made him one of the leagues best closers.
TIER 3: Bound for the Floor
16. Arodys Vizcaino (Atlanta Braves)—Jim Johnson, Jose Ramirez
17. Hector Neris (Philadelphia Phillies)—Luis Garcia, Jesen Therrien
18. Zach Britton (Baltimore Orioles)—Brad Brach, Mychal Givens
19. Kelvin Herrera (Kansas City Royals)—Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter
20. A.J. Ramos (New York Mets)—Paul Sewald, Jeurys Familia
21. Greg Holland (Colorado Rockies)—Adam Ottavino, Jake McGee
22. Blake Parker (Los Angeles Angels)—Cam Bedrosian, Yusmeiro Petit
23. Alex Claudio (Texas Rangers)—Jose Leclerc, Jason Grilli
24. Blake Treinen (Oakland Athletics)—Santiago Casilla, Ryan Dull
25. Matt Belisle (Minnesota Twins)—Taylor Rogers, Trevor Hildenberger
- Kelvin Herrera, despite being effective over the last month or so, needs to be downgraded a little as he deals with a lingering forearm issue. He is supposedly alright to pitch for now, but as the Royals continue to fade away from the wild card race, the team may shut him down sooner rather than later.
- The bottom 10 closers really are a crapshoot on a week to week basis, but there are certainly options with more upside than others. Maybe Greg Holland has figured things out and can regain closing again and being effective while doing so. I’m not so sold yet. Perhaps Blake Parker has a stranglehold on the Angels job, which could definitely be profitable for owners, but I don’t believe Mike Scioscia believes Parker is his guy just yet, especially after blowing a save Monday night. Alex Claudio and Matt Belisle offer little upside but for the most part have been consistent. Blake Treinen still has tantalizing upside but has been maddeningly inconsistent.
TIER 4: Better Days (and the Bottom Drops Out)
26. Seung Hwan Oh (St. Louis Cardinals)—Tyler Lyons, Matt Bowman
27. Shane Greene (Detroit Tigers)—Alex Wilson, Joe Jimenez
28. Brad Ziegler (Miami Marlins)—Kyle Barraclough, Junichi Tazawa
29. Sam Dyson (San Francisco Giants)—Mark Melancon, Hunter Strickland
30. Juan Minaya (Chicago White Sox)—Jake Petricka, Gregory Infante
- The situation in St. Louis is still a little dicey, making Seung Hwan Oh more of a dart throw with little strikeout upside on a weekly basis. Shane Greene is stuck on a Tigers team that will field one of the most lackluster squads the rest of the season. He hasn’t exactly been blowing away the competition himself anyway. Brad Ziegler finally blew a save this past week, and while his job should be secure for now, Kyle Barraclough still looms. Sam Dyson came back to reality also, allowing 5 earned while only recording one out on Friday against the Cardinals. Juan Minaya probably doesn’t even make a lot of MLB rosters, but the White Sox don’t have a clear-cut backup option to turn to so he will probably keep the job for a while.
Andrew Miller (Cleveland Indians)
Joakim Soria (Kansas City Royals)
Koda Glover (Washington Nationals)
Huston Street (Los Angeles Angels)