Closing Time 4/2: Ranking the Top 30 Closers Every Tuesday

Rank Player Change Next in Line
1. Edwin Diaz (New York Mets) Jeurys Familia
2. Kenley Jansen (Los Angeles Dodgers) Joe Kelly
3. Blake Treinen (Oakland Athletics) Joakim Soria
4. Aroldis Chapman (New York Yankees) Zack Britton
5. Josh Hader (Milwaukee Brewers) Jacob Barnes
6. Sean Doolittle (Washington Nationals) Trevor Rosenthal
7. Kirby Yates (San Diego Padres) Craig Stammen
8. Jose Leclerc (Texas Rangers) Shawn Kelley
9. Roberto Osuna (Houston Astros) Ryan Pressly
10. Felipe Vazquez (Pittsburgh Pirates) Keone Kela
11. Brad Hand (Cleveland Indians) Neil Ramirez
12. Ken Giles (Toronto Blue Jays) Joe Biagini
13. Jose Alvarado (Tampa Bay Rays) +2 Diego Castillo
14. Will Smith (San Francisco Giants) +2 Reyes Moronta
15. Wade Davis (Colorado Rockies) -1 Seung-Hwan Oh
16. Raisel Iglesias (Cincinnati Reds) +2 Jared Hughes
17. Matt Barnes (Boston Red Sox) +1 Ryan Brasier
18. Cody Allen (Los Angeles Angels) -1 Ty Buttrey
19. Alex Colome (Chicago White Sox) +1 Kelvin Herrera
20. Jordan Hicks (St. Louis Cardinals) +1 Andrew Miller
21. Pedro Strop (Chicago Cubs) -2 Steve Cishek
22. David Robertson (Philadelphia Phillies) +1 Seranthony Dominguez
23. Arodys Vizcaino (Atlanta Braves) -1 A.J. Minter
24. Greg Holland (Arizona Diamondbacks) +3 Archie Bradley
25. Shane Greene (Detroit Tigers) +3 Joe Jimenez
26. Trevor May (Minnesota Twins) -1 Taylor Rogers
27. Sergio Romo (Miami Marlins) +2 Drew Steckenrider
28. Mychal Givens (Baltimore Orioles) -4 Richard Bleier
29. Anthony Swarzak (Seattle Mariners) UR Cory Gearrin
30. Ian Kennedy (Kansas City Royals) UR Brad Boxberger
  • Will Smith was officially named closer in San Francisco last week and has already paid dividends for those who took a chance drafting him. He picked up his second save last night and has a 4/1 K/BB ratio over 2 innings while not yet allowing a hit.
  • While he does have one hold to his name, Raisel Iglesias has yet to earn a save this season and picked up a loss yesterday after entering in a tie game. He’s struggled to start the season (2.1 IP, 3 H, 1/3 K/BB) but the usage is the bigger concern to monitor.
  • Matt Barnes received the first and only Red Sox save chance to date and shut the door with a perfect ninth while adding 2 K’s. It’s good to see him stay out of trouble in his first outing, but it’s still too early to declare him the full time closer.
  • Pedro Strop’s season has gotten off to a rocky start as well, which is not helping his case to keep the closer job even after Brandon Morrow returns. He should have some leash to begin the year still, but another shaky outing or two could lead to Steve Cishek seeing save chances.
  • While neither has earned a save yet, the situation in Philadelphia with Seranthony Dominguez and David Robertson still has the looks of a full-blown timeshare. Both are still worth holding onto, despite the rough start for Robertson, as the Phillies should start cranking out save chances.
  • The Braves are in a similar situation with A.J. Minter returning this week and the news that Arodys Vizcaino may lose save opportunities due to his shoulder problems. Both are worth owning for now until we see how things play out but Minter is the preferred option at this point.
  • The same goes for the Twins, as it looks like Rocco Baldelli will play matchups in the 9th rather than have a set closer. Taylor Rogers earned the first save of the year, getting the last 1.1 innings of the game with 3 lefties and a switch hitter due up. Trevor May has only recorded one out this season, but I’d still expect him to get the next save chance with a predominantly right-handed lineup due up in the 9th.
  • The situations in Baltimore, Seattle and Kansas City are shaping up to be fantasy nightmares, which is not totally unexpected. Mychal Givens has yet to earn a save with the Orioles, but Mike Wright, Paul Fry and Richard Bleier have all earned one so far. This is super frustrating for Givens owners and I understand dropping him in 10-12 teamers. With Hunter Strickland down, the Mariners have thrown almost everyone out there in the 9th inning with a lead, but maybe that will change with Antony Swarzak returning. Who knows about the Royals situation, but Ian Kennedy was successful when he got the chance so it’d make sense to run him back out there again for the next one.

Graphic by Michael Haas (@digitalHaas on Twitter)

Rick Graham

Rick resides in the Boston area and has experience as a player and coach at the collegiate level. He has been covering relievers for Pitcher List since 2017.

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Comments


theKraken

That is strange news about Vizcaino…. just strange. Hurt but playing means hes not hurt too bad I guess. Then the random part about losing saves is weird too. I think withing a few weeks that “news” will be irrelevant or he will be on the DL. It is frustrating to see these inexperienced young managers mismanage bullpens…

Rick Graham

Yea it is certainly strange. It may just be them trying to manage his workload by not having him pitch back to back days. Maybe this is just a weird excuse for them to use Minter in save situations. I don’t know but either way it’s bad news for Vizcaino.

OldMilwaukeePounders

What are your thoughts on Amir Garrett or David Hernandez in the CIN saves picture? Don’t they fit the bill more than Hughes should Iglesias struggles prove injury related?

Good read as usual!

Rick Graham

They do, and I think Hernandez may be the real handcuff here but Hughes was that guy last season. Garrett has the stuff to get into the mix but they probably prefer him early in games.

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