What is a finale in fantasy without a final closer report?  Nothing I tell ya.  It’s like a compound without an element, or a really cool shout out to the Low End Theory.  I salute the 14 sober readers of that “not firmly planted” on the porcelain thinking throne.  So this is it my friends, the last of the last of the last.  I was debating on what to do for the last post of the year.  Something cliche, something with recycled jokes that you see all the time… wink.  Nah, I am an original, I survive millennials and the whole generation X by just being me.  Not loved by all by liked by most and yet here I still sit.  Shout out to all the readers I lead astray, and the ones I actually helped.  Not everyone gets everything right all the time, but I try.  I am human.  You would think a computer generated version of Smokey would have a cooler avatar than a bear that looks like an extra from the Fat Boys movie Disorderlies.  So to keep it chalk, I will keep it plain and simple and do what I have done for years.  Give you a final ranking of all the closers this year and a glimpse into the future of closers.  As in the who will be closing next year for every team or at the very least an estimated guess straight from my basement.  So with the final post of the year for me from a baseball perspective about to wrap, I enjoyed bringing you the jazz and the haps on the relief game again, this my eighth year at Razzball nation.

2017 Predicted Closers:

AL East:

Balt – Zach Britton

Bos – Craig Kimbrel

NYY – Aroldis Chapman

TB – Alex Colome

Tor – Roberto Osuna

AL Central:

Clev – Andrew Miller

Chi – David Robertson

Det – Francisco Rodriguez

KC – Wade Davis

Min –Brandon Kintzler

AL West:

Hou – Ken Giles

LAA – Huston Street

Oak – Ryan Madson

Sea –Edwin Diaz

Tex –Sam Dyson

NL East:

Atl –Mauricio Cabrera

Mia –A.J. Ramos

NYM – Jeurys Familia

Phi –Hector Neris

Was – Cody Allen

NL Central:

Cin –Raisel Igelsias

CHC – Hector Rondon

Mil – Tyler Thornburg

Pit –Tony Watson

STL – Seung Hwan Oh

NL West:

Ari – Daniel Hudson

Col – Adam Ottavino

LAD – Kenley Jansen

SD –Brandon Maurer

SF – Mark Melancon


$12 Salads

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. Aroldis Chapman – (Hector Rondon, C.J. Edwards, Joe Smith)

2. Zach Britton – (Mychal Givens, Brad Brach)

3. Kenley Jansen – (Pedro BaezJoe Blanton)

4. Dellin Betances – (Tyler Clippard, Adam Warren)

5. Craig Kimbrel – (Brad Ziegler, Koji Uehara)

6. Jeurys Familia – (Addison Reed, Fernando Salas)

7. Mark Melancon – (Shawn Kelley, Blake Treinen)



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.

8. Edwin Diaz – (Steve CishekTom Wilhelmsen, Nick Vincent)

9. Roberto Osuna – (Jason Grilli, Joaquin Benoit)

10. David Robertson(Nate Jones, Dan Jennings)

11. Cody Allen – (Andrew MillerBryan Shaw)

12. Francisco Rodriguez – (Justin Wilson, Bruce Rondon)

13. Seung-hwan Oh – (Kevin Siegrist, Matt Bowman)

14. Wade Davis – (Kelvin Herrera, Joakim Soria)

15. Ken Giles – (Luke GregersonWill HarrisPat Neshek)

16. Tony Watson – (Neftali Feliz, Felipe Rivero)

17. Ryan Madson – (John Axford, Ryan Dull)

18. Jeanmar Gomez – (Hector NerisCesar Ramos)

19. Sam Dyson– (Jake Diekman, Matt Bush)

20. Alex Colome – (Brad Boxberger, Xavier Cedeno)


These guys are the men that make the save market go round. They punch in, punch out. Have the job, no real threat to speak of, and are basically just there to collect great benny’s so they can take care of their crippled brother. Who is only really crippled because he is scared of the sun.

21. Jim Johnson –  (Mauricio Cabrera, Shea Simmons)

22. Fernando Rodney / A.J. Ramos– (Kyle Barraclough)

23. Adam Ottavino – (Carlos EstevezBoone Logan)

24.  Sergio Romo – (Derek Law, Will Smith)

25. Tyler Thornburg – (Corey Knebel, Carlos Torres)

26. Brandon Kintzler – (Ryan Pressley, Taylor Rogers)

27. Brandon Maurer (Ryan Buchter, Brad Hand)


Brain Freezes

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. Raisel Igelsias  – (Tony CingraniMichael Lorenzen)

29. Daniel Hudson – (Randall Delgado, Jake Barrett)

30. Andrew Bailey – (JC Ramirez, Deolis Guerra)



  1. JJ says:

    If you had to sit one closer tomorrow out of Chapman, Dyson, Giles, Hudson and Iglesias which one would it be?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @JJ: The one who doesn’t pitch today, would be my bench. Meaning of game for playoffs implication also factors in

      • JJ says:

        I meant today.

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:

          @JJ: Dyson

          • JJ says:

            I think that he threw all of 8 pitches yesterday. You still think I should sit him? Its basically sit him and start Roark or play all of my closers. I think that Roark will be on a short least and with the possible rain delays….I don’t see him pitching 5 innings and being in line for a win.

            • Smokey

              Smokey says:

              @JJ: I would still roll Roark. you have 4 closers regardless of who you sit and 1 with a chance to win in Roark. Hudson and Dyson both pitched yesterday so I went with the odds that they won’t tax Dyson today with them already clinched

              • Jj says:

                Thanks Smokey. Appreciate the input. Season is on the line

  2. Manny says:

    Smoky this is a great list & is phenomenal help for next year & especially Keeper considerations. However I believe u left off one notable player. What about my boy Carter Capps? Led the MLB in K ratio in 2015 & the Padres traded for him this season. He is already pitching again & the Padres bullpen is very weak. I can see them pushing him as their closer so he can put up big numbers & then they can flip him for more come the deadline or 2017 offseason. I think he may end up with the job out of Spring & at worst ends up as a valuable set up guy. If he gets the closing job I think he could challenge Chapman/Miller/Britton. What are Ur thoughts on Capps? Was his name being left off an oversight or do u think he struggles in his return from injury?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @Manny: Definitely not an over sight an I have seen the reports that he is throwing already, he isn’t going to be ready to start the year as the closer but will be the guy you wanna draft there late as most will forget about him. Capps has that elite ability, ballpark and lack of talent around him to be a top 8-10 closer next year, just tentative on the save total with injury slowing his start and Padres estimated save opps.

  3. Bill says:

    Great work Smoke, thanks! See you in the spring.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @Bill: Thanks for the read all year Bill.

  4. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:


  5. Hometown Heroes says:

    How long will it take Berdrosian to take the job from Street? He was terrible this year!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @Hometown Heroes: shouldn’t be too long, health is only caveat

  6. Cheese says:

    Thoughts on Raisel’s ceiling next year?


    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @Cheese: depends really on how their starters develop not solely on that but it helps. He gas 30 save potential next year easily as is right now

  7. Racehorse says:

    Braves just signed RHP Jim Johnson to a two-year contract extension through 2018.

    So now Mauricio Cabrerra and my dynasty team doesn’t look like 2017 match made in bullpen heaven…

    Smokey, what say you?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:

      @Racehorse: yea the ageist in me hates it because I love Cabrera. But a veteran presence there makes sense for the Braves, will be interesting who holds sway coming out of Spring

  8. Mark says:

    Where is A. J Ramos, $12 Salad , Donkey Corns, did not see him ?

Comments are closed.