Fantasy Baseball Closer Chart (last updated August 14)
The chart below breaks down all 30 major-league teams' bullpens in terms of relievers' proximity to the closer role, not their overall fantasy value. Teams are broken down by division.
"CLOSER" is either that team's officially designated closer, or the pitcher most likely to get the team's next save chance. "NEXT IN LINE" is the pitcher next-most likely to take over if something happens to the closer, or the one who might get any save chances on the closer's nights off. "NOTES" beneath each division's chart provide detail on teams' closer situations that might have an unusual wrinkle, like an injury to the typical closer requiring a short term fill-in, or a committee situation.
NOTES: Mychal Givens appears to have stepped up as the Orioles' go-to closer. ... Aroldis Chapman has struggled of late, which doesn't mean his status as Yankees closer is in jeopardy, but Zach Britton could receive the occasional save chance in his stead in the short term. ... Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said that Ken Giles' acquisition was made with the intent to have him close for the team, though the right-hander has struggled initially since being activated. Ryan Tepera could figure back into save chances if Giles doesn't improve soon.
NOTES: The White Sox are using a closer-by-committee, with Jace Fry, Jeanmar Gomez, Thyago Vieira, Juan Minaya and Luis Avilan all candidates for save chances on any given day. ... The Indians have begun doing some mixing and matching with save chances, with Cody Allen and Brad Hand both getting chances in recent days, and Andrew Miller is now healthy and could figure into the mix in the coming days. ... Following the trade of Fernando Rodney to the Athletics, the Twins gave their next save chance to Trevor Hildenberger. Hildenberger's recent struggles, however, could push Addison Reed, Taylor Rogers or Trevor May into the mix if they continue.
NOTES: Roberto Osuna has completed his suspension and was activated by the Astros on Aug. 5, though it's unclear how quickly he'll be pushed into the closer role. He has been setting up for Hector Rondon thus far. ... The Rangers traded both Keone Kela and Jake Diekman in the span of 16 hours, leaving Jose Leclerc, the team's leader in holds, as their most likely new closer.
NOTES: Kyle Barraclough was removed from the Marlins' closer role Aug. 7, then placed on the DL Aug. 10 with lower back stiffness. The team will use a closer-by-committee picture including Drew Steckenrider, Adam Conley and Javy Guerra in Barraclough's absence. ... With Anthony Swarzak (DL: shoulder) sidelined, the Mets have been using Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo to close games. ... Sean Doolittle (DL: toe) and Kelvin Herrera (DL: shoulder) are sidelined for the Nationals, and Ryan Madson was hit hard on Aug. 12 and has complained of back pain recently, casting some doubt upon the team's closer picture. Koda Glover might now be the favorite for the team's next save chance, though Justin Miller and Sammy Solis could also factor in.
NOTES: Pedro Strop has converted each of the Cubs' past five successful save chances (through Aug. 5) in Brandon Morrow's (DL: biceps) absence, giving him the look of their full-time closer. Carl Edwards Jr. has set him up in each and appears to be next-in-line, though Steve Cishek and Justin Wilson could also get late-inning looks. ... Following Corey Knebel's poor performance Aug. 9, Brewers manager Craig Counsell said he'd use the right-hander in an "easier spot" in his next appearance. Jeremy Jeffress and Josh Hader seem the most likely candidates to get the team's next save chance, though Knebel might not be out of the role for too long.
NOTES: Kenley Jansen (irregular heartbeat) is expected to be sidelined for about a month, leaving the Dodgers' closer picture entirely uncertain. Scott Alexander, who has gotten the first look, has struggled, opening up a competition between him, Caleb Ferguson, J.T. Chargois and perhaps even Kenta Maeda and Ross Stripling, who were recently moved to the bullpen to help out. Maeda is perhaps the most interesting upside play of the bunch.