Brian, Circle of Trust, Closers, Relievers

Closer Circle of Trust: May 2013


Trusted

Solid

Danger

Heath Bell Greg Holland Kevin Gregg
Jose Valverde
Edward Mujica
Andrew Bailey Addison Reed Huston Street Grant Balfour
Casey Janssen
Ernesto Frieri Sergio Romo Craig Kimbrel Aroldis Chapman Joe Nathan Tom Wilhelmsen
Jim Henderson Jim Johnson Mariano Rivera Jonathan Papelbon Jason Grilli  
Jose Veras Fernando Rodney Chris Perez Rafael Betancourt
Rafael Soriano Bobby Parnell
Steve Cishek Brandon League Glen Perkins  

Notes: Trusted pitchers are “set it and forget it” guys. Solid pitchers have a reasonable chance at recording 30 saves. Danger pitchers have a reasonable chance at having the door closed behind them, very soon.

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Brian, Circle of Trust, Closers, Relievers

Closer Circle of Trust: April 2013


Trusted

Solid

Danger

Joel Hanrahan Greg Holland Shawn Camp Joaquin Benoit
Mitchell Boggs J.J. Putz Addison Reed Huston Street Grant Balfour
Casey Janssen
Ernesto Frieri Sergio Romo Craig Kimbrel Aroldis Chapman Joe Nathan Tom Wilhelmsen
Brandon League Jim Johnson Mariano Rivera Jonathan Papelbon Rafael Soriano
 
Jose Veras Fernando Rodney Chris Perez Rafael Betancourt
Jason Grilli Bobby Parnell
Steve Cishek Jim Henderson Glen Perkins  

Notes: The closer carousel begins. Hopefully you bought into the closers who are in blue or green in your draft. The outside looking in isn’t where you want to hang out. But let’s take a look at each color. Trusted pitchers are “set it and forget it” guys. Solid pitchers have a reasonable chance at recording 30 saves. Danger pitchers have a reasonable chance at having the door closed behind them, very soon.

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Brian, Closers, Rankings, Relievers

Brian’s Top 30 Closer Rankings and Projections for ’13


Craig Kimbrel is head of the class.

Relief pitchers are often thought of as the “kickers” of baseball, and there is a reason for this theory. For one, there are 30 closers in the league (maybe even more if you count “by committee” bullpens). If you’re in a 10 team league, there will be a throng of closers to be had, even into the late rounds (not every closer will be owned by the end of the draft). Closers also only (really) fulfill one stat category (Saves), which means if you draft a closer with one of your top 10 picks, you’re going to be losing out on a lot of other categories.

That being said, I like to own one of the more renown closers as to avoid the headache of “chasing saves.” I won’t ever go out and draft the best closer, or the second best for that matter, but I like to have a guy on my team who is going to get me at least 30 saves and won’t be in jeopardy of losing his job.

There’s a reason I leave these rankings until last: without fail, every year, one or two closers lose their starting gigs in spring training due to injury or ineptitude. Already Chris Perez and Grant Balfour have injuries. Guys like Jonathan Broxton, Brandon League, and Ernesto Frieri don’t have solid ground beneath them and could begin the season as eighth inning hurlers. The reason most leagues hold their drafts at the end of March is to avoid wasting picks on dead end closers.

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Brian, Circle of Trust, Closers, Relievers

Closer Circle of Trust: July 2012


Trusted

Solid

Danger

     
Steve Cishek Chris Perez Jonathan Broxton Huston Street Alfredo Aceves
Carlos Marmol
Addisod Reed J.J. Putz
Craig Kimbrel Jason Motte Rafael Soriano Aroldis Chapman
Ernesto Frieri Fernando Rodney Jim Johnson Jonathan Papelbon Joel Hanrahan Jose Valverde
Glen Perkins Tom Wilhemsen
Joe Nathan
Rafael Betancourt
Brett Myers Tyler Clippard
Bobby Parnell Kenley Jansen
Ryan Cook Santiago Casilla Casey Janssen John Axford

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Brian, Outfield, Pick Ups, Questions, Relievers, Rumblings, Second Base, Shortstop

Early Season Observations


Elite Starting Pitchers Struggling

Timmy won't be asked to do anymore video games with an ERA over 12.00.

This is something Ryan Butler is going to touch on in an article later this week, but it’s something worth noting here. After two turns through pitching rotations, six starting pitchers ranked in the top 100 by Yahoo! have an ERA over 6.00 (Tim Lincecum, 12.91; C.C. Sabathia, 6.75; Zack Greinke, 6.75; Dan Haren, 6.97; Adam Wainwright, 11.42; and Daniel Hudson, 8.71). Yu Darvish, the Chosen One, has eight walks in two starts and his WHIP (2.21) weighs more than he does. Mat Latos has the same amount of walks as strikeouts (five).

Conversely, pitchers like Chad Billingsley, Edwin Jackson, Barry Zito, and Jonathon Niese are all pitchers who went largely undrafted in many leagues, but are ranked among the top starters through two weeks.

We’re not saying you should hit the panic button yet, but it’s a reminder that there’s always pitching to be had.

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Brian, Circle of Trust, Closers, Relievers

Closer Circle of Trust: April 2012


Trusted

Solid

Danger

Chris Perez Jonathan Broxton Matt Capps Frank Francisco
Jim Johnson Javy Guerra Joel Hanrahan Huston Street Brian Wilson
Matt Thorton
Sergio Santos J.J. Putz
Craig Kimbrel Jose Valverde Heath Bell Grant Balfour
Brandon League John Axford Mariano Rivera Jonathan Papelbon Jordan Walden
Jason Motte
Alfredo Aceves Carlos Marmol Sean Marshall
Rafael Betancourt
Brett Myers Joel Peralta

Brad Lidge
Joe Nathan

Notes: The closer carousel begins. Hopefully you bought into the closers who are in blue or green in your draft. The outside looking in isn’t where you want to hang out. But let’s take a look at each color.

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Brian, Closers, Rankings, Relievers

Brian’s Top 30 Closer Rankings and Projections for ’12


Craig Kimbrel is head of the class. But do you trust him to repeat last year's success?

Relief pitchers are often thought of as the “Kickers” of baseball, and there is a reason for this theory. For one, there are 30 closers in the league (maybe even more if you count “by committee” bullpens). If you’re in a 10 team league, there will be a throng of closers to be had, even into the late rounds (not every closer will be owned by the end of the draft). Closers also only fulfill one stat category (Saves), which means if you draft a closer with one of your top 10 picks, you’re going to be losing out on a lot of other categories.

That being said, I like to own one of the more renown closers as to avoid the headache of “chasing saves.” I won’t ever go out and draft the best closer, or the second best for that matter, but I like to have a guy on my team who is going to get me at least 30 saves and won’t be in jeopardy of losing his job.

There’s a reason I leave these rankings until last: without fail, every year, one or two closers lose their starting gigs in spring training due to injury or ineptitude. Already Joakim Soria and Ryan Madson are out for the year. Drew Storen is injured (hence his low ranking; he would be number five on this list otherwise). The jury is still out on guys like Jason Motte and Javy Guerra. The reason most leagues hold their drafts at the end of March is to avoid wasting picks on dead end closers.

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