Please see our player page for Josh Hader 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.

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Welcome back to our year-end awards show! If there’s any issues with the award ballots, don’t look at me. These were all tabulated at the accounting firm of Fried, Tellez and Bregman. Stop giving them the evil eye, German Marquez! You might be wondering why I’m hosting. Well, at the last minute our other host had to back out. Sadly, Joe Buck couldn’t be hair. I mean here. HAHA…Wait a second! Why is Will Smith, the catcher, coming on stage? *smack* Ow! It was a joke about Joe Buck’s hair. Damn! Now, before we get to our first award, I just want to thank everyone. I appreciate all of you, except Jonathan India. Okay, now onto the awards, without which you’d have no idea who was the best and worst hitters and pitchers this year, and you’d be left giving out your own awards and no one cares if your “Low sodium tomato soup in a sourdough bowl” won your “Whitest Lunch Of All-Time” award. Stop making up fake awards! Leave that to me. Anyway, here’s the year-end awards for the best and worst of 2022 fantasy baseball:

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Rangers have called up Josh Jung. Heads over to Amazon to order a megaphone; sits by door to wait three to five days for shipping; argues with Cougs about how we should get Prime; being told we do have Prime, it’s just I don’t have Prime; we argue more, and, finally, the megaphone arrives after five days. I rip apart the packaging, and push button, but I need batteries. I beg Cougs for our Prime password, so I can get batteries quicker, she acquiesces, and the next day, when the batteries arrive, I load them into the megaphone, press the button and scream, “LET’S F***ING GO!” The asterisks were megaphone feedback. So, Josh Jung finally gets the call, and he’s a immediate add in all leagues. He’s got 60-grade power, and shouldn’t struggle to hit for a decent average. Has no speed, and you never know what a guy is going to do in only a month of time, but I’m here for the Rangers’ Ponce De Leon’ing to get Jung again, and so should you. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Corbin Carroll sat yesterday against the historically significant southpaw, Bailey Falter (6 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.08). Torey Lovullo, fantastic on MTV’s The Challenge, benches Corbin Carroll after two games is such big-brain’ing. Never underestimate the dumbness of any of this. Oh, and if this is because the new CBA says a guy who starts the year with the team, and wins the ROY can get the team a draft pick, then the thing that was supposed to reduce service time manipulation, is actually manipulating it further HAHAHAHAHAHA–falls over, fainting. A nice man dressed like Colonel Sanders waves a fan on me to awaken me. “Colonel Sanders, is that you?” “Looks like you can KF-see straight,” and he snaps his fingers, disappearing. What was left was the hottest bat in the majors, Jake McCarthy (1-for-4) and his 6th homer, and 2nd homer in as many games. I was worried about Carroll taking McCarthy’s job, but now I think McCarthy’s locked into everyday at-bats, and Carroll might sit here there. Carroll’s still worth rostering everywhere, but absolutely the same for McCarthy. On the 30-day Player Rater, Jake McCarthy is a top 10 guy. Overall! My goodness. He’s also barely rostered in any leagues. He’s got power (3 HRs in the last month), speed (8 SBs), and is hitting near-.330 over the last 30. Get in on McCarthy, before the Reds win. Not the Cincy Reds. I’m talking Commies. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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“Hello, Sharks! I’m here today with a lip balm like you’ve never seen before. It only needs to be applied once, and it lasts forever. It’s called…It’s Da Balm! And it’s made out of napalm. On the tables in front of you, you will find a sample of the product. We have had no complaints! Try it please, and I think you’ll be left, as most, completely speechless, lips falling onto the floor.” Mr. Wonderful mumbles as his bottom lip falls off. “Another happy customer!” So, Alec Bohm (3-for-5, 6 RBIs, and his 9th and 10th homer) and Mark Canha (3-for-5.5 RBIs and his 9th and 10th homer) had a dueling two-homer game, both for their 9th and 10th homers. Elias Sports Bureau about to concoct some trivia out of that shizz! Mark Canha’s homers ended up being more important, but you know him. Alec Bohm or Alec Bohm for 2023 fantasy baseball? Do you know him? Maybe, but let’s see. He’s corrected what was hurting him last year in a big way. His Launch Angle (10.7) almost doubled this year, and his flay ball rate, while no one would consider it elite, it’s much better (28.7%). Don’t love that his HardHit% has come down, but it’s still top 50-ish in the league and his exit velo (90 MPH) is solid. Bohm’s 2023 price will be interesting to see, and a buying opportunity might be present. Not sure if a sleeper is in the works, though. He doesn’t feel on the precipice of being jaw-droppingly great. Or lip-droppingly. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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Triston “Dr. Sticks” McKenzie is so skinny, he hula hoops with a Cheerio. McKenzie is so skinny he uses floss as toilet paper. I have a dad bod but want to identify as skinny–am I trans-slender? Triston McKenzie may get his nickname from his lack of girth, but last night McKenzie left no meat on the bone for the White Sox, as he fired 7 innings of two-ER ball while striking out a career-high 14 batters, lowering his ERA to 3.11 in the process. This wasn’t just a good game for McKenzie; it’s the continuation of at least the last month, as he’s got a 2.95 ERA over his last 33 IP, with a 28/8 K/BB. Pay no attention to the xERA of 4.04 and xFIP of 4.08, or the K% that’s has dropped 2 Ks per 9 IP from 2021, and enjoy the fantasy goodness Dr. Sticks is currently giving fantasy owners as the Guardians chase the AL Central division title. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Guess what, y’all?! A new Spencer Torkelson dropped! No, he’s nothing like that old Spencer Torkelson! For one, he’s not young! He’s more like a new older Spencer Torkelson! For two, the Tigers are calling up Kerry Carpenter because they have no conceivable reason to keep him down anymore, because of the stats he was putting up in the minors — .316/.384/.653 with 30 home runs and 75 RBIs in 96 games between Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo. That’s the Mecca of Ohio. It’s why it’s called Holy Toledo. He was on a recent prospect stash list by Itch, and I say stop stashing and start doing! Comerica Park sucks. More like Crummica! Owned it! But someone making that good of contact with that sorta power is worth a look in deeper mixed leagues. Let’s see if Carpenter can drum up some offense and make the Tigers’ stop feeling like Rainy Days and Mondays. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The trade deadline came and went in a blaze of glory.  As a lifelong Cardinals, the rumors and conversations about trading for Juan Soto had me feeling like I was living on a prayer.  In true Cardinals’ fashion, they would ultimately lose out on acquiring the 23 year old, generational talent, to the Padres.  If we find out that it truly came down to not wanting to give up Dylan Carlson, it will leave a bad taste in my mouth like bad medicine does.  While it wasn’t just Juan Soto, there were plenty of big names that had to learn new zip codes.  Josh Hader was the first big name to pack his bags, as he joined Soto in San Diego.  The Yankees brought in Frankie Montas and Lou Trivino, and shipped Jordan Montgomery on two separate deals.  If the Cardinal faithful is upset over losing Harrison Bader, just know that I’ll be there for you, JOMO!  If our friend CoolWhip didn’t have it bad enough with his Angels, they up and ship Raisel Iglesias to the Braves, to which I felt shot through the heart, since he was a staple on a lot of my fantasy teams.  While these are just a few of the big names, there are cascading effects across the league as a result of the movement.  Maybe there are a few players that will see some increased playing time or go to a more advantageous environment?  Let’s see if there are any name that might help you Get Ahead In Head To Head For Week 16.  

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What’s poppin, Razzpimples? Thought I’d throw together a quick little ditty on how the past couple days of trade action have affected bullpens across the league, and then how that impacts your fantasy lineups. Won’t be deep-diving or anything, just a gut-check response to the craziness. Don’t forget, the Razzball Bullpen Chart is manned by yours […]

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