Fantasy Baseball Closer Chart (last updated September 25)
The chart below breaks down all 30 major-league teams' bullpens in terms of relievers' proximity to the closer role, not their overall fantasy value. Teams are broken down by division.
"CLOSER" is either that team's officially designated closer, or the pitcher most likely to get the team's next save chance. "NEXT IN LINE" is the pitcher next-most likely to take over if something happens to the closer, or the one who might get any save chances on the closer's nights off. "NOTES" beneath each division's chart provide detail on teams' closer situations that might have an unusual wrinkle, like an injury to the typical closer requiring a short term fill-in, or a committee situation.
NOTES: Valdez has each of the Orioles' two September saves and has finished five of his six appearances in the month, signaling he's the team's new choice to close. Harvey, who was supposed to be built up into the closer role, seems to be the preferred choice to set up most nights. (9/21) ... Chapman's appeal of his three-game suspension has hit a delay, and it's possible that any penalty will be served in 2021 rather than this season. (9/21) ... The Rays have a major league-leading 20 saves, and 12 different individuals have recorded at least one save for them. This is a committee, through and through, and Anderson, Castillo, John Curtiss, Oliver Drake, Peter Fairbanks, Ryan Sherriff and Ryan Thompson could all get the ball in the ninth if the matchup is right. (9/21) ... Dolis (knee) returned to action Sept. 24 and converted a four-out save, signaling he's back as the Blue Jays' top choice to close. Jordan Romano (finger) is working his way back and could contribute during the playoffs, though it's unclear whether he'll immediately be worked back into the late-inning mix. (9/25)
NOTES: The White Sox activated Aaron Bummer (biceps) from the IL on Sept. 24 and designated Steve Cishek for assignment in a corresponding move. Crochet, the 2020 first-rounder who can throw 100-plus mph, might well now be the next-in-line behind closer Colome, though Bummer could just as easily reclaim his former such role. (9/25) ... Garcia has recorded each of the Tigers' past three saves and has an additional four holds during what's an active 12-game scoreless streak. He appears the Tigers' closer, while Cisnero, Gregory Soto and Buck Farmer are all involved in the setup mix. (9/21) ... Holland (oblique) was unavailable to pitch on Sept. 24, with Jake Newberry filling in for the save. It appears that the Royals could use a committee for any future games Holland misses, with Barlow, Newberry, Josh Staumont and Jesse Hahn all involved. (9/25) ... Twins manager Rocco Baldelli prefers a closer-by-committee approach to his bullpen, with Rogers and Romo the most likely ninth-inning candidates most nights, in that order. (9/21)
NOTES: Taylor was activated from the IL Sept. 20 and set up Pressly in that day's game. Brooks Raley and Andre Scrubb could also still be involved in the setup mix. (9/21) ... It certainly seemed as if Mayers was the Angels' new closer, after he saved back-to-back games Sept. 21-22, but he was then used to set up Pena on Sept. 23, on Mayers' third straight day of work. These two seem like the top choices, and perhaps the reason for Mayers' variable usage is that manager Joe Maddon sees the right-hander as more of a multi-inning option. (9/24) ... Hirano has each of the Mariners' past four saves, signaling that the closer's role is his. (9/25)
NOTES: Yimi Garcia earned the save on Sept. 11 in a game where Kintzler set him up, but this still appears to be Kintzler's job. Garcia, with his 0.84 ERA this year, seems to have moved ahead of Brad Boxberger as the next-in-line. (9/14) ... Workman's recent struggles have allowed Neris to sneak back in and seemingly claim the closer role, though there could be a bit of a committee at work here. In addition to those two, Tommy Hunter has a 3.24 ERA and eight holds in his past 17 appearances, saved the Sept. 19 game (Neris' night off) and could be in the mix. (9/21)
NOTES: Wick's (oblique) placement on the IL Sept. 19 appears to open up the primary setup duties for Kimbrel, who has six scoreless appearances with 11 strikeouts and no walks in September. (9/21) ... Amir Garrett's Sept. 15 save was more of a night-off situation for Iglesias and Bradley, neither of whom was deemed available. Iglesias is 3-of-4 converting saves since Bradley's acquisition. (9/16) ... Pirates GM Ben Cherington admitted Sept. 15 that Keone Kela (forearm) is probably done for the season, locking Rodriguez into the closer role. (9/16) ... Even since Gallegos' (groin) return from the IL on Sept. 21, Miller has each of the Cardinals' past two saves, including the most recent on Sept. 24. Gallegos worked the sixth inning in that game, but there's still a degree of committee at play, including Miller, Gallegos, Genesis Cabrera and Alex Reyes. (9/25)
NOTES: Crichton has each of the Diamondbacks' four saves since Kevin Ginkel's demotion to the alternate site on Sept. 11. Guerra has most commonly set Crichton up during that time span. (9/21) ... Rosenthal has notched the save with Pomeranz setting him up in all three of their games with traditional ninth-inning save chances since the trade deadline (on Sept. 6, 9 and 13). (9/14) ... Watson, Coonrod, Tyler Rogers and Sam Selman all have saves for the Giants since Sept. 7, signaling that manager Gabe Kapler prefers a closer-by-committee approach. (9/24)