So the All-Star break has come and swept us away and now its onto the last 19/32 of the season. The chase for saves is becoming more and more concrete as the season grows, and the closepocalypse of 2012 is just a great conversation starter, just like super storm Sandy. The list of reliable closers with concrete gigs is growing and the rankings this week show a reflection of that. There is a huge have and have not factor going on, it’s either reliable and tried and true or it’s a 2 AM special where you’re trying to convince her to give you a Bryant Gumbel. The top of the list remains stout and the names are fairly consistent, it’s just getting to be a very swanky restaurant and the salad menu is expanded to accommodate more guests…so to speak. So enjoy the ensalada and don’t forget to ask for the endless breadsticks.
Edward Mujica – Was all shiny and a man who look liked he pressed his suits, until the week of the AS break where he not only got his first BS, but followed that up with a second just to make sure OCD people were satisfied. All is not to worry, the Cards are stellar in the end game and their SP is a nice pair of italian leather loafers. That means comfy, for all the non-Ferragamo wearers.
Grant Balfour - The Aussie not only sounds as smooth as a Stetson after shave commercial, he has been perfect. When I say perfect I mean perfect all the way back to last April 29th. That’s a crazy long time, I have had to shave a whole 3 times in that span. I know t takes a day and a half to get to where he is from but I think he can stay for awhile, maybe even take my sister out for a bloomin onion.
Chris Perez – Since his return from rehab….ummm I mean the Detox, no that’s not right either. My pet chinchilla has informed me that his cousins are a luxury coat for a Nicaraguan heiress and that it was the DL. Since his return at the end of June he has been perfect 6-6 in save opps and has allowed a total of one run. Way to go, mullet power.
You know that restaurant your girlfriend/wife/what-have-you likes to go to that charges, like, $12 for a salad? Every time you go there, you have a thoroughly solid meal. No complaints, except you just paid $12 for a salad when you could’ve went to McDonald’s and stuffed you and your woman for ten schmools and had $2 in quarters left over to make the hotel bed vibrate. These closers are $12 salads.
1. Craig Kimbrel (-) ( Jordan Wladen, David Carpenter, Luis Avilan)
2. Mariano Rivera (-) (David Robertson, Shawn Kelly)
3. Joe Nathan (-) (Tanner Scheppers, Joakim Soria, Robbie Ross)
4. Rafael Soriano (-) (DrewStoren, Tyler Clippard)
5. Aroldis Chapman (-) (J.J. Hoover, Sam LeCure)
6. Jason Grilli (-) (Mark Melancon, Tony Watson, Justin Wilson)
7. Glen Perkins (+3) (Jared Burton, Casey Fien)
8. Jim Johnson (+1) (Tommy Hunter, Darren O’Day, Brian Matusz)
9. Grant Balfour (+4) (Ryan Cook, Sean Doolittle)
10. Greg Holland (+5) (Aaron Crow, Tim Colllins)
11. Addison Reed (-3) (Matt Lindstrom, Nate Jones, Jesse Crain -DL)
12. Kenley Jansen (+5) (Brandon League, Paco Rodriguez)
13. Jonathan Papelbon (-6) (Antonio Bastardo, Justin DeFrautus)
Imagine you’re following a donkey, who’s wearing a wool cap, through a desert for 1700 miles. Why are you following a donkey? Because he promises you something wonderful and you just need to trust him. Does the donkey talk? Yes. Yes, he does talk. So when you and the donkey in the wool cap arrive at his destination, he removes the wool cap to reveal a horn. The donkey is a unicorn and his gift to you for your trust is saves. These closers are Donkeycorns.
14. Sergio Romo (-3) (JeremyAffeldt, Santiago Casilla, Sandy Rosario)
15. Edward Mujica (-3) (Trevor Rosenthal, Kevin Siegrist, Seth Maness)
16. Ernesto Frieri (-2) (Scott Downs, Garret Richards, Dane De La Rosa)
17. Fernando Rodney (+1) (Joel Peralta, Jake McGee)
18. Casey Janssen (-2) (Steve Delabar, Brett Cecil, Aaron Loup)
19. Koji Uehara (+7) (Andrew Bailey, Junichi Tazawa)
20. Bobby Parnell (-1) (LaTroy Hawkins, David Aardsma)
21. Rafael Betancourt (-) (Rex Brothers, Matt Belisle)
22. Joaquin Benoit (+5) (Drew Smyly, Al Alburquerque, Bruce Rondon)
23. Chris Perez (-) (Vinnie Pestano, Joe Smith, Cody Allen)
24. Huston Street (-5) (Luke Gregerson, Dale Thayer)
25. Kevin Gregg (-3) (James Russell, Blake Parker)
26. Steve Cishek (-2) (Mike Dunn, A.J. Ramos)
27. Jose Veras (-2) (Jose Cisnero, Travis Blackley)
I’m going on a picnic and I’m bringing apples, bananas and Carlos Marmol– Wait, he just gave up 12 earned runs and hit Castro in the head with a pick-off throw. Brain freeze! Make it stop! Use the following closers at your own risk.
28. Francisco Rodriguez (+1) (Jim Henderson, John Axford)
29. Heath Bell (-1) (David Hernandez, J.J. Putz)
30. Tom Wilhelmsen (-) (Oliver Perez, Yoervis Medina)