Closing Time 8/9: Ranking the Top 30 Closers Every Wednesday

Typically, if a reliever has one bad outlier in a week, it doesn’t affect his stock too much. However two outings in which the pitcher in question allows two or...

Typically, if a reliever has one bad outlier in a week, it doesn’t affect his stock too much. However two outings in which the pitcher in question allows two or more runs and it would be hard not to question his place on this list. This week saw both Felipe Rivero and Roberto Osuna labor through 2 games, which certainly comes as a shock after how dominant they have looked all year. Neither should be in danger of losing their jobs soon, although Juan Nicasio did pick up a save this past week the day after Rivero’s second meltdown. Both worked clean 9ths last night and should continue to be started with confidence. They just aren’t “elite” right now.

TIER 1: Nothing Compares 2 U

1. Kenley Jansen (Los Angeles Dodgers)—Pedro Baez, Brandon Morrow

2. Craig Kimbrel (Boston Red Sox)—Addison Reed, Matt Barnes

3. Aroldis Chapman (New York Yankees)—Dellin BetancesDavid Robertson 

  • Even when Craig Kimbrel is blowing saves, he still manages to turn out a productive fantasy week for his owners. The K’s will always be there in bulk, as well as the save chances. Aroldis Chapman has finally looked like his normal self over the past 2 weeks and should finally begin rewarding owners who drafted him early in drafts this past winter.

TIER 2: Save Tonight

4. Edwin Diaz (Seattle Mariners)—Nick VincentTony Zych 

5. Felipe Rivero (Pittsburgh Pirates)—Juan Nicasio, Joaquin Benoit 

6. Roberto Osuna (Toronto Blue Jays)—Ryan TeperaDominic Leone  

7. Corey Knebel (Milwaukee Brewers)—Jacob BarnesAnthony Swarzak

8. Ken Giles (Houston Astros)—Luke GregersonChris Devenski   

9. Zach Britton (Baltimore Orioles)—Brad Brach, Mychal Givens 

10. Greg Holland (Colorado Rockies)—Adam Ottavino, Pat Neshek

11. Wade Davis (Chicago Cubs)—Carl Edwards Jr.Justin Wilson

12. Trevor Rosenthal (St. Louis Cardinals)—Brett Cecil, Seung Hwan Oh 

13. Raisel Iglesias (Cincinnati Reds)—Drew Storen, Michael Lorenzen 

14. Brad Hand (San Diego Padres)—Kirby YatesPhil Maton 

15. Alex Colome (Tampa Bay Rays)—Steve Cishek, Tommy Hunter  

  • So it’s definitely now time to start taking Trevor Rosenthal seriously again. Despite Seung Hwan Oh pitching well as of late, Rosenthal has been another animal since the All-Star break. He now officially has his closing job back and should have decent leash given how dominant he has been. He has a legitimate chance to make it into that top-tier by the end of the month.
  • Brad Hand is another closer on the rise following his promotion a few weeks ago. He has been a dominant reliever all season, and now finds himself seeing save chances while forming a surprisingly deadly back-end trio with Kirby Yates and Phil Maton. As long as the Padres find ways to give Hand 2-3 opportunities a week, he should have legitimate top 10-12 value the rest of the season.

TIER 3: Bound for the Floor

16. Kelvin Herrera (Kansas City Royals)—Joakim Soria, Brandon Maurer 

17. Cody Allen (Cleveland Indians)—Bryan Shaw, Joe Smith

18. Sean Doolittle (Washington Nationals)—Ryan MadsonBrandon Kintzler

19. Arodys Vizcaino (Atlanta Braves)—Jim Johnson, Jose Ramirez

20. Shane Greene (Detroit Tigers)—Bruce RondonAlex Wilson

21. Fernando Rodney (Arizona Diamondbacks)—Archie Bradley, David Hernandez

22. Hector Neris (Philadelphia Phillies)—Louis Garcia, Edubray Ramos

23. Blake Treinen  (Oakland Athletics)—Santiago CasillaRyan Dull

24. Alex Claudio (Texas Rangers)—Jose Leclerc, Matt Bush

25. Bud Norris (Los Angeles Angels)—Cam BedrosianBlake Parker

  • All things considered, it was a pretty good week for the new closers. Arodys Vizcaino and Shane Greene had solid weeks and should be just fine as 2nd or 3rd RP options for fantasy owners. Blake Treinen now has 2 saves as a member of the A’s, proving that he is more than capable of holding down the job going forward.
  • And Fernando Rodney continues to produce when given a chance to. He has only pitched 6 innings over the past 30 days, so that obviously isn’t helping fantasy owners much. But when he’s been on the mound, he has been one of the most effective fantasy relievers out there. He’s still very much worth owning and could go on a tear at any given time.

TIER 4: Better Days (and the Bottom Drops Out)

26. Matt Belisle (Minnesota Twins)—Taylor RogersTyler Duffey

27. Brad Ziegler (Miami Marlins)—Junichi TazawaDrew Steckenrider 

28. A.J. Ramos (New York Mets)—Paul Sewald, Jerry Blevins

29. Sam Dyson (San Francisco Giants)—Hunter Strickland, George Kontos

30. Tyler Clippard (Chicago White Sox)—Juan Minaya, Jake Petricka

  • Ok, so Matt Belisle has actually been really good the past month or so. He and Brad Ziegler can get cheap saves for desperate owners, but I still wouldn’t drop anyone with upside for the two. AJ Ramos and Sam Dyson are the definition of blah, and both will be unseated by the end of the month. Tyler Clippard would be lucky to see 5 more save opportunities the rest of the season.

Disabled List

Jeurys Familia (New York Mets)

Mark Melancon (San Francisco Giants)

Andrew Miller (Cleveland Indians)

Kyle Barraclough (Miami Marlins)

Keone Kela (Texas Rangers)

Koda Glover (Washington Nationals)

Will Harris (Houston Astros)

David Phelps (Seattle Mariners)

Huston Street (Los Angeles Angels)

Glen Perkins (Minnesota Twins

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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