Please see our player page for James Karinchak 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.

The World Series begins Friday, meaning the MLB offseason is just around the corner. But there never really is an offseason as the action just changes from the field to the front office.

And just like the majors, there is no offseason when it comes to fantasy baseball. Fantasy baseball GMs are already thinking about next year, and that is especially true for those who are in keeper leagues.

Since the last pitch of the regular season, those who play in keeper leagues have been looking at trade targets to shore up weaknesses exposed during this past season and wondering who the top keepers are going to be in 2023 fantasy baseball.

Well, I’m here to try to help you with that last part of the sentence – who are the top keepers for next season. Each week I am going to reveal my list of top keepers for 2023, starting with relievers. Next week I will focus on starting pitchers before going around the infield and then ending with the top outfielders.

A CRAZY GROUP

Before we move ahead, a disclaimer about relievers. The three things we know about relievers are this:

They are wildly inconsistent from year to year
They are wildly inconsistent from year to year
And they are wildly inconsistent from year to year

The inconsistent play even takes place during the season, with Josh Hader being a prime example of that. If there is one position that could use a dartboard to help with the rankings, it is relievers. Thus, these rankings are based a little on past performance, a little on the eye test and a lot of what my gut is telling me.

Unlike other positions, where age weighs in heavily for my top keepers, the age of a reliver doesn’t factor in as much. It may move them down the list if I think other relievers on the staff can become the closer in 2023 (I’m looking at you, Jose Alvarado), but if they are proven closers and also 33, I’m fine with that.

Also, I am assuming that most keeper leagues don’t just use saves but also have holds or saves+holds. A deep league doesn’t just showcase closers. A real pitching staff has starters, middle relievers and closers, so this list features top closers and setup men.

With that in mind, let’s get on with the Top 40 keepers for 2023 – reliever edition.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Congratulations!  If you are reading this, you fall into three categories.  1.  You had a BYE, and this is your first week.  2.  You won last week with the suggestions of Razzball. 3.  Hi Mom…thanks for reading again.   Regardless of your reasoning, you are because you have some trust in the process.  I hope that I have guided you through some murky waters, around treacherous falls, and into safe pastures.  This game isn’t all too tough.  We simply have to utilize a process, identify some advantageous matchups, and have more luck than the person we are playing.  No need to dredge on, let’s get to Round 2!

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?

Go ahead, Mr. Wendle! Mr. Wendle, yeah! Lord, Mr. Wendle! If you didn’t know I was quoting Arrested Development, you’d think I was fornicating with someone named Mr. Wendle. You know Mr. Wendle is no bum. By the way, is it in poor taste to hand out B.U.M. equipment sweatshirts at a homeless shelter? Ya know what, prolly better you don’t answer. Yesterday, Joey Wendle (3-for-4, 6 RBIs) hit his 8th and 9th homer, about two weeks after I told you to drop him. Oopsie! Much more egregiously is the A’s and Rays screwed over Wendle so bad that he won’t be a free agent for the first time until he’s 34 years old. What a s’Wendle! Any hoo! Also, in this game, Austin Meadows (1-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs) hit his 22nd homer as he makes a case for himself in my fantasy team with Audrey and Jayne. Um, my Meadows fantasy team. Then, Jordan Luplow (2-for-4, 2 runs) hit his 8th homer, and I didn’t know what MLB team he was on, and I’m not even sure Jordan Luplow knew. Over on the O’s making the O face was Jorge Mateo (1-for-5, 2 RBIs) who hit his 3rd homer, and is hitting around .350 since his trade from the Padres to the O’s. With his 50-steal speed, he’s angling himself for a 2022 sleeper. For this year, I’d absolutely grab him but for SAGNOF; power has a face, and it’s not his. Finally, Cedric Mullins (2-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs) and Ryan Mountcastle (4-for-5, 3 runs) both hit their 24th homer. Not at the same time, that’s not allowed. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We’re in the endgame of the fantasy season at this point so it’s time to get your roster dialed and ready. Let’s get down to business and check in on the pitcher projections for the rest of the season in points leagues. Points were calculated based on the criteria below and taken from the Steamer/Razzball Rest of season projections, same as in previous versions of this list.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We took a look at hitters last week which means its time for pitchers. Below you will find the scoring formula that I used to arrive at these numbers based on the Razzball/Steamer projections

Innings Pitched (IP)  3

Hits Allowed (H) -1

Earned Runs (ER) -2

Walks Issued (BB) -1

Strikeouts 1

Wins (W) 5

Losses (L)   -5

Saves (SV) 5

I’m sure the first question on everyone’s mind is where does first half superstar Shohei Ohtani land on this list and in the overall projections. He comes in quite a bit lower than I was expecting, barely making the list at all with only 100.9 points projected from his time on the mound. Combined with his batting numbers his overall projection is 285 which would make him the number one player over the season’s second half. He is only projected to throw 42 innings which seems like a total he can surpass. It will be interesting to see how the Angels choose to deploy him in the second half, but if he continues to make regular starts on the mound his point total could shoot up.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Early yesterday, I was staring out my window, the rain slowly rolling down the glass, and from the outside it looked like tears were rolling down my cheeks. From the inside, it also looked like I was crying, because I was. I dramatically turned away from the window, put my hand to my forehead and fell into my Giancarlo beanbag. “Cuddle me, Giancarlo Beanbag,” I whispered into the beanbag I had dressed in a Yankees jersey. On the stereo, Rob Thomas scream-sang, “I want to take you for granted,” and I thought about that. Had I taken Eloy Jimenez for granted? Was this…that? As the wait for injury news dragged on, I wandered out onto the road and stopped a car to ask them if they heard anything on Eloy, and they said, “Are you crazy get off the freeway?” Was I crazy? Was that what this was? So, Eloy Jimenez is out for the year with a ruptured left pectoral tendon. Now allow me to return to playing terrible Matchbox Twenty songs and sobbing IT’S 3 AM AND I MUST BE LONELY. Obviously, my top 500 and top 20 outfielders were updated. Who knew I’d prefer Alloy Jimenez who has been blended with sturdier metals to improve wear. I wonder if CVS has condolence cards for fantasy teams. Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for 2021 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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!

Please, blog, may I have some more?