Closing Time 5/31: Ranking The Top 45 Closers Every Tuesday

Welcome to Closing Time where all the closers and speculative save options are are broken down into tiers based on skill, competition/opportunity/job security, and injury risk. It’s a mixture of...

Welcome to Closing Time where all the closers and speculative save options are are broken down into tiers based on skill, competition/opportunity/job security, and injury risk. It’s a mixture of short and long term value with more focus placed on the long haul.

Share your questions and critiques in the comments. Follow me on twitter @HisDudenessOfNY for the occasional snippet. 


1. Kenley Jansen (Los Angeles Dodgers) – Pedro Baez

2. Wade Davis (Kansas City Royals) – Kelvin Herrera

3. Aroldis Chapman (New York Yankees) – Andrew Miller

4. Craig Kimbrel (Boston Red Sox) – Koji Uehara

5. Zach Britton (Baltimore Orioles) – Darren O’Day, Brad Brach, Mychal Givens committee


6. Roberto Osuna (Toronto Blue Jays) – Drew Storen

7. Jeurys Familia (New York Mets) – Addison Reed

8. Hector Rondon (Chicago Cubs) – Pedro Strop

9. David Robertson (Chicago White Sox) – Nate Jones

10. Mark Melancon (Pittsburgh Pirates) – Tony Watson


11. Trevor Rosenthal (St. Louis Cardinals) – Kevin Siegrist. Maybe Seung Hwan Oh

12. A.J. Ramos (Miami Marlins) – David Phelps, maybe Kyle Barraclough

13. Santiago Casilla (San Francisco Giants) – Hunter Strickland, Sergio Romo when off the DL, Cody Gearrin

14. Cody Allen (Cleveland Indians) – Bryan Shaw

15. Sam Dyson (Texas Rangers) – Jake Diekman, maybe Matt Bush

16. Luke Gregerson (Houston Astros) – Will Harris, Ken Giles

17. Arodys Vizcaino (Atlanta Braves) – Ugly committee with Jason Grilli, Jim Johnson and Hunter Cervenka


18. Francisco Rodriguez (Detroit Tigers) – Mark Lowe, Justin Wilson

19. Fernando Rodney (San Diego Padres) – Ryan Buchter, Brandon Maurer

20. Steve Cishek (Seattle Mariners) – Joaquin Benoit, Nick Vincent

21. Huston Street (Los Angeles Angels) – Joe Smith

22. Ryan Madson (Oakland Athletics) – Sean Doolittle

23. Jeanmar Gomez (Philadelphia Phillies) – Hector Neris or David Hernandez

24. Jonathan Papelbon (Washington Nationals) – Felipe Rivero, Shawn Kelley

25. Jeremy Jeffress (Milwaukee Brewers) – Tyler Thornburg, Michael Blazek


26. Brad Ziegler (Arizona Diamondbacks) – Daniel Hudson, Tyler Clippard

27/28. Alex Colome/Brad Boxberger (Tampa Bay Rays)

29. Jake McGee (Colorado Rockies) – Carlos Estevez, Boone Logan

30. Sean Doolittle (Oakland Athletics)

31. Kevin Jepsen (Minnesota Twins) – Fernando Abad, Trevor May

32. Tony Cingrani (Cincinnati Reds) – Ross Ohlendorf

TIER 7 – Speculative

33. Fernando Abad (Minnesota Twins)

34. Daniel Hudson (Arizona Diamondbacks)

35. Will Smith (Milwaukee Brewers)

36. Andrew Miller (New York Yankees)

37. Felipe Rivero (Washington Nationals)

38/39. Hector Neris/David Hernandez (Philadelphia Phillies)

40/41. Joaquin Benoit/Nick Vincent (Seattle Mariners)

42/43. Ryan Buchter/Brandon Maurer (San Diego Padres)

44/45. Carlos Esteves, Boone Logan (Colorado Rockies)

46. Kevin Siegrist (St. Louis Cardinals)

47. Hunter Strickland (San Francisco Giants)

48. David Phelps (Miami Marlins)


Glen Perkins (Minnesota Twins)


Jeurys Familia’s ratios ballooned after two shellings last week but I’m not worried at all. Looked great yesterday closing the door on the White Sox with a clean inning and 2 Ks. Oh well.

Sam Dyson keeps inducing ground balls and getting it done. Hate to go all in on a closer who just got the job but I think Texas will stick with this setup ROS. Jake Diekman and Matt Bush are also studs and you could argue any of the three have the best stuff but Dyson has seniority and reliability. 

Luke Gregerson settling down and I still feel very comfortable relying on Greggy for saves ROS. 

– The Braves stink but they should sneak a handful of dubs, especially with Teheran returning to all star form and Folty/Perez tightening up the staff lately. I’ll happily sacrifice some saves for more reliable ratios from Arodys Vizcaino compared to a Francisco Rodriguez. 100% the case in daily rotos, maybe less so in weeklies. 

Huston Street off the DL, safe to drop Joe Smith. Street is fairly uninspiring but he gets it done. 

Sean Doolittle got a save while Ryan Madson was used in the 8th to face the heart of Detroit’s lineup. Might be too late to sell Madson since you won’t get market value. Hard to say how this will shake out. I’m fairly concerned with Madson’s decreased GB% and lower K/BB but his numbers looked far better than his peripherals last year as well so maybe he’ll continue to walk the tightrope. Melvin just publicly threw his support behind Madson for whatever that is worth. 

– Absolutely feel free to ignore the speculation but I still have a feeling Jeremy Jeffress will get dealt for prospects, in which case he may not close in the new destination. The trade deadline is a long ways away but still something to keep in mind, especially if you are cursing me for disrespecting JJ with a low ranking.

– Same goes for Brad Ziegler. The Diamondbacks look a bust and Brad is an unrestricted free agent next year. Assuming Zona doesn’t turn it around Ziegs could be dealt for a prospect near the deadline. 

Alex Colome and Brad Boxberger sitting in Tier 5 because I have no idea how this will actually shake out. Reports are TB will ease Boxberger into the roll so Colome could still snake a save or two. However I have always maintained that my trust in Box is shaky and there is a decent chance Colome gets the job back down the line. 

– I’m still rolling out Kevin Jepsen in rotos where I’m desperate for saves but it isn’t that pleasant of an experience. Said Glen Perkins wouldn’t stay healthy before the season even started and I foresee another DL stint if he actually returns. Glen had a minor setback but he’s still supposedly on the comeback trail. Meh. Fernando Abad could be a strong scoop of Jepsen implodes again and you don’t trust Perk. Southpaw but his numbers are filth so far.  


Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

Account / Login