Please see our player page for Drew Pomeranz to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

Well hello there, Razz-folken!

Sorry, I’m working my way through Stephen King’s Dark Tower series (on Book 6 of seven — fantastic, trippy, masterful stuff), which contains some very interesting folken indeed. So that’s where that came from.

I’ve got some news for y’all. I am no longer the Injury Guru around these parts. I had my fill of ’em last year, let me tell you. Not sure my brain could handle tracking all that madness for another season (assuming we even get a full one…). Alas, the ever-so-talented-and-witty Keelin Billue will be manning the Ambulance Chasers column. Instead, I’ve become the official Bullpen Guru of Razzball! In addition to the weekly SAGNOF recaps, I’ll be in charge of our brand-spankin’ new Bullpen Chart, tracking who’s closing and who’s setting up across the MLB. Side note: I’m still waiting for the day SVHD becomes the standard category.

What I’ve got for y’all is just a good old-fashioned tiered ranking (catered toward the 12-team standard 5×5 audience). I could pretend I’m doing this for the people, but really this is as much for me as it is for you, dear reader. I’ve had my fantasy hockey helmet on, helping Viz over the on the Razzball Hockey side of things. Haven’t paid the best attention to the goings on in MLB — I could use a little brush up on how bullpens are looking.

Welp, I’ll quit dillydallying and get right to it. I’ll update these rankings eventually as things change throughout the course of the offseason. Some big names are still homeless as of now (you can find notes on them under the rankings themselves). These rankings stem from a combination of my genius brain and Rudy’s projections, which of course you can see over on the World Famous Razzball Player Rater.

I lied; I’ve got a little more dillydallying to do. I want to make it clear this is a focus solely on guys in closer situations. I’m looking at this through the lens of saves. I would personally rather own a Devin Williams type than a crappy closer like Cole Sulser in most instances, but I didn’t want to jumble up my tiers with guys who aren’t likely to get saves with any kind of regularity. Devin Williams, Craig Kimbrel, Jonathan Loaisiga, etc. do not appear in what you’ll see below. Maybe I’ll get around to some HAGNOF rankings, but you can always pop over to the Bullpen Chart and the Player Rater to find guys to help you with holds. And one last note: even though you see numbered rankings, they’re more of a formality. I treat everyone pretty much equally within their respective tiers, and it could shake out to where any one of them could out-rank the other. Is that a cop out for “hindsight is 20/20” purposes? Maybe! Oh, and the stats you see are 2021’s totals. Duh.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Here you will find bullpen charts for each team. Bullpens are a messy business to track, but the purpose here is to highlight each team’s closer(s) and setup men. You can more or less expect the chart to read left-to-right in order of importance, but again, it can be a fluid situation day-to-day, week-to-week (looking at you, Tampa Bay Rays!). So, not only are we highlighting saves options, we’ve got you saves+holds folks covered, too! 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The stage was set. A 27-year-old with three and two-thirds innings in his major league career under his belt. Zero starts prevously. A Rule 5 no-nothing arm from the 6th round of the 2015 draft. He was traded from the Dodgers to the Phils for Garlick. Not even a root vegetable! Not even a rutabaga, they said! Then left him unprotected, and the Diamondbacks grabbed Gilbert in the Rule 5 draft. A draft where players are divvied up by one team saying, “We’ll take him,” then every other team has to the count of five to say they want him. And no one wanted Gilbert! His own father, Gilbert Gilbert, didn’t even want to name him Gilbert Gilbert Gilbert after his father, Gilbert Gilbert Gilbert. Forgotten, abandoned, and then:  History.  Tyler Gilbert (9 IP, 0 ER, 0 hits, 2 walks, 5 Ks) threw MLB’s 8th no-hitter (because they don’t count games that are seven innings long as real games) in his first major league start. With that historic, momentous game under his belt, grab him now for fantasy? God, no! He sucks. I mean, maybe in NL-Only. But while holding your nose. The other three guys to throw no-hitters in their first start were Bobo Holloman, Bumpus Jones and Ted Breitenstein. Two of them were in the 1800s when baseball were made rocks. Bumpus and Bobo sound like great company for a traveling circus. Either way, Saturday made for a memorable night for Gilbert. Just last year he was an electrician’s apprentice, so he went from lights on to lights out. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Before Lewis Brinson (3-for-4, 3 RBIs) homered twice (6, 7) on Wednesday, I wrote him up for the Buy column this week — which is available now on the Patreon. I had included him, because I saw recently that Lewis Brinson was hitting near-.350 in the last two weeks, and had hit some homers, so I was pumped to open his Statcast page to see improvement and! And! AND! Well, no, not entirely. He’s been better than he has been for Launch Angle, getting good wood on ball and xBA is up, but, damn, he still misses so much. If you lift balls with good wood–Wait, are we still talking about hitting? Right, right. Yes, good things will happen. Brinson is hitting balls as hard as Tatis, Verdugo, Story and Walsh. Clearly, great guys to be mentioned in the same breath, but they all make far more contact, and have three-plus times as many at-bats. This last few-week stretch has been great, but when I called him recently Byron Pennieston, because he was a poor man’s Buxton, it still applies. Of course, I’d still grab Pennieston in any league. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“Guten tag, mi amigos. Um, I mean, hola. I am mucho from a Spanish-language country and not at all on the run from the German authorities.” That was the Nazi in Exile as a youth, taking the very conspicuous name German Marquez. Yesterday, was a big-time “Hola, meine frau” as German Marquez took a no-hitter into the 9th inning in Coors, and ended up with 9 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 1 walk, 5 Ks, ERA at 3.62 in 92 pitches, as he racked up his 11th Quality Start. My Jewish ancestors would never forgive me, but I want to help the Nazi in Exile, and in the process my better Angels. Well, not my better Angels, just the Angels. Someone disguise their voice, call up the Angels and tell them the Rockies will deal German Marquez for anything, because the Rockies are a very stupid organization. You can tell the Rockies they’re getting a guy named Ham Silliard and just read them Sam Hilliard’s Triple-A stats to them and they’ll go for it. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Those pitching last night:  Clayton Kershaw vs. Zack Greinke. Two surefire Hall of Famers, one who will give the shortest Hall of Fame speech on record. Also, pitching last night: future first ballot Hall of Famers, Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer. Two more must watch: Cy Young candidates, Corbin Burnes and Joe Musgrove, toeing the rubber to go against each other. All in one night. That’s what we had yesterday. And the best pitching performance was the 41-year-old, 88 MPH hurler, Rich Hill aka Dick Mountain aka Dick n’ Blisters. That’s why baseball is incredible! Predict that shizz! Yesterday, Rich Hill went 8 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 13 Ks, ERA at 3.63. His perfs (the kids call them that — the kids younger than Hill) 10 K/9, 3 BB/9, and almost exactly pitching to his ERA, as his luck has been virtually neutral. Will it continue? Well, since he saved his arm by taking all of his 30s off for blisters, maybe? Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

With Eugenio Suarez apparently the new Reds shortstop after they tried and failed to acquire every garbage shortstop this offseason, Jonathan India has been added to the top 20 3rd basemen. Now…we dance! *long involved Bollywood dance with me somehow sitting on a floating carpet* Yelling into the distance, “I love you, Pashmina!” Was about time that I gave India his due. What, am I British now? My teeth would tell you no, but my love for Olivia Colman and Earl Grey would tell you yes. Which ya gonna believe? I just recently discovered India, while standing in The Bahamas and saying, “Hey, cool, this is America and who wants to open a casino?” Was talking to Podcaster Ralph, who knows a thing or two about prospects, and he gassed my head up on Jonathan India, and I think he can now go 40/10/.260. Then, we deflated ourselves back to earth, and realism took us south, and now I’m in Sri Lanka. “Sri Lanka is better than a cup of Sanka!” That’s me just before getting dirty looks in Sri Lanka. India is a pull-heavy, fly ball hitter. How’s that sound in Cincy? Seriously, take a moment and think about it. You see how I came away with a 40/10/.260 line? Gonna put him down for realistic projections in the top 20 3rd basemen, but looking for a guy who could be 12-team mixed league relevant by May? Look no further than India, Magellan. For now, if your starter is out, outsource to India. Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for 2021 fantasy baseball:

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The people were asking for a closer rankings update and I haves to gives thems what they wants. To recap — here are my preseason rankings from February 3rd: SAGNOF: Preseason Closer Rankings.

TLDR: I ranked the closers in that first article according to three factors: their job security, their pitching ability, and the team they’re on providing them save opportunities (good offenses, good starting pitching, good other relievers.) 

As you’ll see below in only a month and a half there has already been some moving and shaking in my rankings. Only a few hours after my article went live it was out of date because the Twins signed Alex Colome which muddied the Twins closer situation. Some guys have lost/gained in the rankings due to their small sample size spring stats. 

Let’s get into it!

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And the men who hold high places

Must be the ones who start

To mold a new reality

Closer to the heart

 

What? You didn’t know that Toronto-based prog rock band Rush were huge roto baseball fans? That song was released in 1977 — the same year the Toronto Blue Jays played their inaugural season. It’s actually about their love for under-appreciated closer Pete Vuckovich who saved 8 games for the blue birds that year. A lot of us have that same love for certain closers and when it comes to draft time we think with our hearts rather than our heads. 

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SAGNOF has a new Daddy! Or I guess technically Step-Daddy — this will always be Grey’s baby. That’s right — this year I’ll be slipping into those SAGNOF slippers each week to tell you who will be doing the saving and who will be doing the stealing! 

“So like good guys and bad guys?” asks my wife as I explain to her what I’m writing about this year. 

*Sigh* “Yes…like good guys and bad guys…” I wept.

Let’s get this SAGNOF off to a great jump-off. Lo! Below are my top-30 closer rankings! 

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The MLB trade deadline is today. So far the fireworks haven’t been overly bullpen related. We’ll see if that holds true as many teams fashion themselves plucky upstarts in the mix for expanded playoff spots. As far as rumormongers go, Jeff Passan is really the only name I put any stock in at this point. Evening-bird and Yo-dude are banned from my twitter feed.

Please, blog, may I have some more?