There have been a couple more closers losing their gig in recent days. However, many relievers are really hitting their stride as we approach the All-Star Game. Let's see how the depth chart has played out.
Since June 4th, Mark Melancon posted a 1.80 ERA and 0.80 WHIP over 10 innings with six strikeouts and two wins. Unfortunately, his only save over the past five weeks came on his first appearance in June. He is 11-for-13 closing games with work still needed to correct his ERA (5.08) and WHIP (1.45). Joe Mantiply moves up a notch in the Diamondbacks’ bullpen after Ian Kennedy was placed on the injured list with a calf issue. Mantiply issued only one walk over 32 innings, helping post an elite ERA (1.13) and WHIP (0.84).
The Braves expect Kenley Jansen to be out for another week with his irregular heartbeat. Will Smith delivered a save in three straight appearances over the past week. He gave up one run over his previous 11.1 innings with 16 baserunners (six walks) and 13 strikeouts. Atlanta teased the fantasy market last week when A.J. Minter secured a save on June 28th. Unfortunately, he pitched in a setup role in his next two matchups. Minter remains the Braves’ best reliever in 2022 (1.85 ERA over 34 innings with 45 strikeouts.
Over the past week, the clock may have struck midnight for the success of Jorge Lopez’s right arm. He blew up in all three appearances in July (five runs, eight baserunners, and three home runs over 1.1 innings with three strikeouts, two losses, and two blown saves). His confidence looks to be waning despite still offering strength in his overall 2022 stats (1.88 ERA and 0.99 WHIP over 38.1 innings with 13 saves in his 17 tries). Buying insurance is a must until Lopez rights the ship. Felix Bautista saw his 17.1-inning scoreless streak end on July 5th when he allowed a pair of runs over one inning.
Boston Red Sox
The ninth inning has been in good hands after Boston shifted Tanner Houck to the bullpen in mid-May. He has a 1.19 ERA and 1.10 WHIP over his past 22.2 innings with 28 strikeouts and two wins while converting all six save chances. The Red Sox bullpen will improve once Garrett Whitlock returns from his hip injury. He threw in the bullpen on Tuesday, putting him closer to a rehab assignment. John Schreiber improved his shutout run to 14.2 innings with 11 baserunners, 18 strikeouts, and two saves.
David Robertson allowed a run in three of his previous nine appearances, leading to a 2.79 ERA and 1.03 WHIP over 9.2 innings with 12 strikeouts, a win, four saves, and two blown saves. He has 11 saves in his 15 opportunities. His age and success should put him front and center for a contending team looking for a bullpen arm over the latter half of the season. Scott Effross doesn’t have a closing fastball (90.1), but he continues to be the Cubs’ second-best arm in their bullpen (3.09 ERA over 35 innings with 44 strikeouts. Mychal Givens threw the ball much better over his last nine shutout innings with two walks and 10 strikeouts.
Chicago White Sox
After missing three and a half weeks with a forearm issue, Liam Hendriks dominated in his first appearance in a setup role on Monday (one no-hit shutout inning with three strikeouts). He upped his scoreless string to 11.1 innings with 17 strikeouts and seven saves. Hendriks is 16-for-19 when asked to close games. Kendall Graveman secured three saves over the past 10 days while pitching better over his last nine innings (1.00 ERA and nine strikeouts).
The Reds pitched Hunter Strickland in high leverage situations since June 13th. He delivered three saves in four tries while picking up a pair of wins with a 2.70 ERA and six strikeouts over 6.2 innings. However, Strickland has plenty of job loss risk based on his ERA (5.20) and WHIP (1.66) on the year. Cinci claimed Ian Gibaut from the Dodgers this week. He has a poor resume in the majors (5.19 ERA) with no saves, but Gibaut does have closing experience in the minors with a high 90s fastball. All other arms in the Reds’ bullpen point to disaster, so a new name is worth a watch until he blows up.
Zeros have remained the norm for Emmanuel Clase since May 19th. He extended his shutout streak to 20 innings with 23 strikeouts, two wins, and 12 saves. Clase is 19-for-21, finishing off wins with 11 of his saves coming in June. The once-mighty but erratic arm of James Karinchak resurfaced in the major on Monday (one run over one inning with three baserunners and three strikeouts). His arm didn’t look sharp over 11 innings at AAA (5.73 ERA and 1.91 WHIP).
Daniel Bard walked 10 batters over his last 17.1 innings, but he was challenging to hit (6) while delivering two wins and seven saves. Bard failed twice in his 18 chances to secure victories for the Rockies. Alex Colome faded over his previous five appearances (three runs and 10 baserunners over 4.2 innings with five strikeouts). Jake Bird served up a pair of home runs over the past week over 4.1 innings with one strikeout. He has a 1.93 ERA and six strikeouts over his first 9.1 innings in the majors.
Since allowing three runs on June 16th, Gregory Soto didn’t allow a run or hit over five innings with seven strikeouts and three saves. He is 16-for-18 in save situations with a career-best ERA (2.48) and WHIP (1.14). Michael Fulmer gave up one run and 11 baserunners over his last 14.2 innings with 19 strikeouts, and 10 holds. Joe Jimenez came to the big leagues with a closing skill set. Unfortunately, he failed to exceed expectations over his first five seasons with the Tigers (5.72 ERA and 1.40 WHIP). His right arm is back on the rise, highlighted by his last eight innings of work (no runs, four hits, no walks, and 10 strikeouts). Jimenez earned a win, and a save over this span.
Ryan Pressly hasn’t allowed a run or hit over his last four innings with five strikeouts, a win, and three saves. A disaster game (four runs) against the Yankees led to an underwhelming ERA (4.91) since the start of June over 11 innings with 14 strikeouts. Pressly has 17 saves in 20 opportunities. Rafael Montero posted a 1.13 ERA over his previous eight innings with 10 strikeouts and two saves.
Kansas City Royals
Over the past two weeks, Scott Barlow struggled in three games (6.75 ERA over 6.2 innings with eight strikeouts, four saves, and a blown lead. He has 12 saves in his 14 chances. Jose Cuas tossed 3.2 innings with one hit and three strikeouts to work his way up the depth of a struggling Royals’ bullpen.
Los Angeles Angels
The correction of Raisel Iglesias’ stats came in a big way over his last seven innings (no runs or hits with 13 strikeouts, a win, and three saves). He is 15-for-17 when pitching with the lead with the game on the line. Ryan Tepera has been up and down over his previous 9.2 innings, leading to a 4.66 ERA with no walks and eight strikeouts.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Stability remains an issue for Craig Kimbrel. He took a line drive to the back over the weekend that contributed to his poor showing (three runs and three hits over one-third of an inning). Kimbrel has three blown saves in his 17 closing tries with an embarrassing ERA (4.78) and WHIP (1.52) over 26.1 innings. If he lands on the injured list, Brusdar Graterol may steal his job. His arm reached a new peak over his last 13.2 innings (1.32 ERA and 0.66 WHIP), highlighted by no walk and 13 strikeouts.
Tanner Scott battled his way through his last two innings (two runs and five baserunners with two strikeouts), resulting in his second failed save in his 12 chances. His weakness remains his command (20 walks over 33 innings). Dylan Floro earned two saves in his three appearances in July, despite allowing two runs, four baserunners, and one home run over three innings with two strikeouts.
Over his last nine innings, Josh Hader allowed all four of his runs on the year with 11 baserunners and three home runs while recording 17 strikeouts, seven saves, and one blown lead. He is 25-for-26 pitching with the lead with strength in his ERA (1.35), WHIP (0.79), and strikeouts (45 over 26.2 innings). Devin Williams has been electric over his previous 20.2 innings (no runs, 13 baserunners, and 35 strikeouts with three saves).
Saves for Jhoan Duran should start to pile up over the second half of the season. He has a 0.77 ERA and 29 strikeouts over his previous 23.1 innings, with four saves and six holds. Despite the appearance of being the Twins' outright closer, he only had one save chance since May 24th. Minnesota created only two saves over the past 22 days. Emilio Pagan had a roadkill feel over the past two weeks (nine runs, 11 baserunners, and one home run over 5.2 innings with seven strikeouts and two blown saves.
New York Mets
Edwin Diaz turned on the save gas over the past three and a half weeks. He allowed one run over 8.2 innings with 20 strikeouts and seven saves. Diaz pushed his season in projected leads to 18 in his 21 opportunities while lowering his ERA to 1.95 with 63 strikeouts over 32.1 innings. Seth Lugo struggled over his last 9.1 innings (4.82 ERA and 1.50 WHIP with eight strikeouts).
New York Yankees
Since returning from the injured list, Aroldis Chapman allowed a pair of runs due to his three walks issued without recording an out on July 2nd. However, he pitched a no-hit shutout inning in his next outing. Chapman looks miles away from earning saves for the Yankees. Clay Holmes has a save in three straight appearances, helping him to an exceptional closing run over his last 18.2 innings (0.48 ERA, 0.70 WHIP, and 20 strikeouts with 13 saves and one blown save.
The last four saves for the A’s landed in the back pocket of Lou Trivino. He has a 1.35 ERA, 1.95 WHIP, and nine strikeouts over his previous 6.2 innings, but Trivino has made little progress in saving his ERA (6.94) and WHIP (2.01). Domingo Acevedo extended his shutout string to 8.1 innings with six baserunners and nine strikeouts. When Trivino starts to struggle again, Acevedo looks to be the next man up for saves for Oakland.
Seranthony Dominguez looked closer-worthy since getting a chance to earn saves. He posted a 2.70 ERA and 0.60 WHIP over his previous 6.2 innings with no walks and nine strikeouts while converting two of three saves. Brad Hand also threw the ball better over his past 8.2 innings (2.08 ERA and 0.81 WHIP), leading to two saves and a blown save. Corey Knebel started to turn the corner over his last six appearances (no runs or hits over 5.2 innings with five strikeouts).
After struggling twice in late June (five runs and nine baserunners over 1.1 innings with one strikeout), David Bednar tossed two shutout innings with two strikeouts and saves. He is 13-for-16 in closing situations. Yerry De Los Santos missed most of last week with a Covid-19. In his previous two appearances, he picked up a pair of saves while not allowing a run over 1.1 innings with one strikeout. He has a 2.84 ERA and 13 strikeouts over 12.2 innings since getting called up. If Bednar gets moved over the next four weeks, De Los Santos sits next in line for saves in Pittsburgh.
San Diego Padres
Taylor Rogers struggled in three straight games (four runs and nine baserunners over 3.2 innings with five strikeouts, one save, and one blown save), giving him job-losing stats over his last 13.1 innings (8.10 ERA and 1.50 WHIP with 16 strikeouts, four losses, six saves, and three blown leads). His overall success in closing games (23-for-27) allows him some rope before losing his job, but I would buy his handcuff for short-term insurance. With Luis Garcia fading (5.79 ERA and 1.29 WHIP over his last 9.1 innings with 12 strikeouts), I would pay attention to Dinelson Lamet if he is called back up. He has a 0.84 ERA over his previous 10.2 innings with 15 strikeouts, but Lamet did issue six walks.
San Francisco Giants
Camilo Doval continues to be up and down over his last six appearances (four runs, nine baserunners, and two home runs over 5.2 innings with seven strikeouts). He only has one save since June 18th while going 12-for-14. Jake McGee only made one trip to the mound over the past 11 days, suggesting he has an underlying issue after getting drilled in back-to-back outings (four runs and five baserunners over 1.1 innings).
Wins started to come at a faster clip over the 15 games (12-3) for Mariners, helping Paul Sewald earn five saves over the last two weeks. He allowed one run over his previous 7.1 innings with no walks and 11 strikeouts. Sewald failed twice in his 11 chances to protect a lead. Diego Castillo has a 1.13 ERA and 0.44 WHIP over his last 16 innings with 20 strikeouts. Andres Munez also dominated since the middle of June (no runs over 11.1 innings with three walks and 23 strikeouts).
St. Louis Cardinals
Ryan Helsley still hasn’t found a rhythm securing wins for the Cardinals. He has two wins, one save, and one blown save over his past four appearances while allowing two runs over 5.2 innings with 13 strikeouts. Helsley protected the lead in six of his nine chances. Giovanny Gallegos posted a 1.59 ERA and 0.97 WHIP in June over 11.1 innings with 14 strikeouts.
Tampa Bay Rays
The last save call for the Rays went to Jason Adam on Sunday. He has been one of their top arms all season (1.39 ERA and 0.74 WHIP over 32.1 innings with 37 strikeouts), but his three saves have come over two months. Brooks Raley improved his scoreless streak to 11 innings with three hits, 17 strikeouts, and one save.
Joe Barlow earned a save in his last two games but gave up a pair of runs over two innings with one strikeout. Over the past five weeks, Barlow posted weakness in his ERA (5.73) while blowing four of his eight save tries. He is 13-for-17 when pitching with the game on the line. Brock Burke allowed two runs over his previous 28.2 innings with 24 strikeouts and three holds.
Toronto Blue Jays
Over the last five weeks, the Blue Jays created only two save chances for Jordan Romano. He posted a 2.08 ERA and 1.27 WHIP over 8.2 innings with a win, a save, and a blown save. Romano has 17 saves in his 20 opportunities. Adam Cimber pitched better over his previous 4.2 innings (no runs, two hits, and three strikeouts) to remain next in line for saves in Toronto.
Tim Rainey lost his way in back-to-back outings, leading to four runs, four baserunners, and two home runs over two innings with four strikeouts, a loss, and a blown save. He has a 5.40 ERA and 1.71 WHIP since the start of June over 11.2 innings with 16 strikeouts. Rainey is 11-for-15 in closing situations. Kyle Finnegan struggled over his last 8.2 innings (5.19 ERA with nine strikeouts) due to three home runs allowed.
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The best teams will use seven starters and two closers. If I fall behind in saves, I'm forced to use a third closer to make up ground. It can work as long as I'm in the right position in wins and strikeouts. Closers impact in multiple ways – saves, strikeouts, ERA, and WHIP.Who is the best closer in baseball right now? ›
|3||Blue Jays||Jordan Romano|
|4||White Sox||Liam Hendriks|
A closer is often considered the best relief pitcher that a club has in its bullpen. Closers are most often deployed for the final inning of a game when a narrow lead -- three runs or less -- needs to be protected.What position is most important in fantasy baseball? ›
The utility spot comes out on top just because it has just three hitters in it, all three of which are pretty good hitters. The true top position here is shortstop, with an average projection of 1,152 DraftKings points for the top-17 shortstops, and that is even with Trea Turner being in the 2B category.What is a good ERA for a closer pitcher? ›
In modern baseball, an ERA under 2.00 is considered exceptional and is rare. An ERA between 2.00 and 3.00 is also considered excellent and is only achieved by the best pitchers in the league. An ERA between 3.00 and 4.00 is above-average.What is a good whip for a closer? ›
Usually, an average WHIP is around 1.30, while a good WHIP is under 1.10, and an elite WHIP is below 1. A WHIP over 1.50 is generally considered poor.Who has the best bullpen in baseball? ›
New York Yankees
From the beginning of the 2022 season right to the end, the Yankees have had one of the best bullpens in baseball.
|MLB Closer Report - 2022|
|Liam Hendriks||White Sox||37|
He said that 300 saves should be used as the benchmark for calling a closer "elite." "The 300 (save) mark hasn't been done by a lot of people," says Hoffman. "The role probably isn't going to get tweaked much more so 300 probably is a good number."Do closing pitchers pitch every game? ›
A closer is generally a team's best reliever and designated to pitch the last few outs of games when his team is leading by a margin of three runs or fewer. Rarely does a closer enter with his team losing or in a tie game.
Hernandez became one of four relievers in history to win MVP during his first season with the Tigers, when he commanded 16 first-place votes to top an unspectacular field of position players led by Kent Hrbek.
The 2022 group at third base is the weakest we have seen at that position since most of us started playing fantasy baseball.What is the hardest infield position to play? ›
Shortstop. Shortstop is one of the hardest position to play on a baseball diamond. When playing shortstop, you have to cover the most ground of any position on the infield, moving to your left, to your right, and sometimes into the outfield for short fly balls.What position should I fill first in fantasy baseball? ›
Load up on starting pitchers in rounds six through twelve.
In the first five rounds I try to come out with a first baseman, second basemen, third baseman, shortstop, and an outfielder. This ensures that I'll have top-end talent at every position so I'm not stuck drafting someone below my “cutoff” point (see above).
13 And 14-Year-Olds
An average fastball from this age range is anywhere from 55 mph (on the low side) to 75 mph. A pitcher throwing 75 mph is better than most people for this age, and their fastball is at a high school quality. An average changeup for this age is approximately around the 50-60 mph mark.
In baseball statistics, earned run average (ERA) is the average of earned runs allowed by a pitcher per nine innings pitched (i.e. the traditional length of a game). It is determined by dividing the number of earned runs allowed by the number of innings pitched and multiplying by nine. Thus, a lower ERA is better.What is a respectable ERA? ›
In 21st century baseball, an ERA below 4.00 is considered good, and anything below 3.00 is great. An ERA below 2.00 is rare and signifies an exceptional pitcher. Anything above 5.00 is terrible, and generally, pitchers with that ERA either pitch during blow-out games or get sent to the minor leagues.Is 1.2 A good WHIP? ›
The pitchers with the lowest WHIPs are generally the best pitchers in the league -- which makes sense, because the best pitchers should be able to prevent baserunners.Is it better to have a higher or lower WHIP? ›
WHIP is calculated by adding the number of walks and hits allowed and dividing this sum by the number of innings pitched. WHIP reflects a pitcher's propensity for allowing batters to reach base, therefore a lower WHIP indicates better performance.
|Earned run average||7.08|
Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio says a bullpen session takes about seven minutes and can be anywhere from 25 to 50 pitches, depending on whether the pitcher is a starter or a reliever and on how much he likes to throw.Can a bullpen catcher play in a game? ›
A bullpen catcher differentiates from a typical catcher as they are considered a coach and not a player, thus they cannot be behind home plate in an official game.Who is the highest paid closer in Major League Baseball? ›
Helsley brought the heat in San Diego and registered the fastest pitch in the majors so far this season. SAN DIEGO — Cardinals reliever Ryan Helsley set a new standard for throwing heat in 2022 against the Padres on Thursday.Who is the best home run hitter in MLB 2022? ›
A pitcher cannot receive a save and a win in the same game. A relief pitcher recording a save must preserve his team's lead while doing one of the following: Enter the game with a lead of no more than three runs and pitch at least one inning.How many pitches can a closer throw? ›
Relievers typically throw harder than starting pitchers because they can afford to throw at maximum effort, knowing they are unlikely to throw more than 30 pitches in a day.Are saves better than likes? ›
Instagram saves are also a key signal for how the Instagram algorithm works. The more saves you get on a post, the more people it will be shown to in the algorithm. What it means is — people find your content worth revisiting again and again.Has a pitcher ever won a game without throwing a pitch? ›
B.J. Ryan, a pitcher, once earned a win without actually throwing a pitch.
The new rule: Pitchers will have 15 seconds to throw a pitch with the bases empty and 20 seconds with a runner on base. Hitters will need to be in the batter's box with eight seconds on the pitch clock.Should you throw every day as a pitcher? ›
Throw every day. Professional pitchers on both the minor and major league levels throw every single day for at least 10 quality minutes.Who was the only MVP from a losing team? ›
|Born:||June 28, 1936 Wheeling, West Virginia|
|Height:||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|No. 3, 11|
|Born:||March 12, 1948 Laneville, Texas|
|Height:||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
Hal Newhouser: 1944-45 (AL)
The only pitcher on this list, Newhouser led the Majors in wins and strikeouts in both seasons, going a combined 54-18 with a 2.01 ERA.
It goes double in a format that limits each team to two relievers, as many Head-to-Head leagues do, and triple when the scoring is points rather than categories. But first, let's look at the relievers who matter to all formats, grouped by the likelihood of them closing.Do you need a closer in fantasy baseball? ›
Saves are an important component for many fantasy baseball leagues. Closers are one of the most volatile positions in fantasy baseball, and one of the highest turnover positions in MLB. Each year, closers drop like flies and many MLB teams make in-season changes due to injuries or poor performance.How many players should I have at each position in fantasy baseball? ›
The 14 batters consist of two catchers, one first baseman, one second baseman, one shortstop, one third baseman, one middle infielder (second base or shortstop), one corner infielder (first base or third base), five outfielders, and one utility (any batter).Should I have 2 kickers on my fantasy team? ›
Never draft more than one kicker. This is a sure sign that either the person is new to fantasy football or they likely just aren't very good at it. There will be plenty of kickers in the free agent pool for you to pick up all throughout the season for the week your kicker has his bye.When should I draft a closer in fantasy baseball? ›
So, when should I draft my closers you ask? The ideal situation is that you draft three or four closers between rounds 15 and 20. If you do this you will emerge with inexpensive closers who have good ratios and whose jobs are safe.
- Be uber-safe in the first four to five rounds. ...
- Let your sleepers be sleepers. ...
- Use a paper cheat sheet. ...
- Don't wait too long on third base. ...
- Draft two top starting pitchers in the first four to five rounds. ...
- Draft at least two good middle relievers in the late rounds or in the reserve rounds.
Earned run average (ERA)
Earned run average is one of those stats where the lower it is, the better the pitcher. A pitcher's ERA is calculated by the number of earned runs they've allowed (ER), divided by the number of innings pitched (IP) multiplied by 9 (the traditional inning length of a game).
A closer is generally a team's best reliever and designated to pitch the last few outs of games when his team is leading by a margin of three runs or fewer. Rarely does a closer enter with his team losing or in a tie game.What is the best strategy for fantasy baseball? ›
- Fantasy baseball is a marathon, not a sprint. The biggest challenge in fantasy baseball is to exercise patience and not overreact. ...
- Stay active on the waiver wire. ...
- Pay attention to two-start pitchers in weekly leagues. ...
- Sign up for lineup alerts.
Fernando Tatis Jr.
A healthy Tatis Jr. is the most likely position player to finish No. 1 overall on the 2022 Yahoo Player Rater.
People in points leagues in which more points are given to pitching stats might want to take an ace starter first, while people in head-to-head categories leagues might want to find a well-balanced slugger that can help lead their offense each week. The best hitters in the league can play any position.Is it good to stack QB and WR in fantasy? ›
A good wide receiver-quarterback stack can be the backbone of a championship fantasy football team. Stacking refers to pairing teammates on your roster.Why you should remove kickers from fantasy? ›
Just as a place-holder is a necessary position on the actual football field, the kicker position can have a huge footprint on weekly fantasy scoring. Kickers also don't tend to have injuries plague their season as other skilled positions do, and therefore have a bit more playing time consistency.Should you draft 2 defenses? ›
Never Draft More Than One Defense
Therefore, there's no reason to have two defenses clog up your bench. In the past, I've even gone without drafting a defense so that I could draft a player with upside instead. Then I just fill the void before Week 1. Also, no one is going to trade you for your extra "stud" defense.