Closer In Waiting Power Rankings: April 19, 2017: Who Steps In For Washington & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Are you someone constantly on the lookout for the next potential closer? That’s what we are trying to pinpoint here, with our Top 5 Closer In Waiting Power Rankings. These rankings look at the pitchers who appear capable of taking over their team’s respective closing duties (though in some cases, will need some help to get there). Keep in mind, if a pitcher is currently part of a committee they will not be included in these rankings (i.e. the Oakland A’s and Cincinnati Reds situations) despite not currently “holding” the job outright.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at how things stand:

Current Closer
1.Shawn Kelley (NR) / Koda Glover (1)Washington NationalsBlake TreinenLast night saw another struggle for Treinen, who had to be pulled from a save chance and replaced by Kelley. That would make us think that he's the favorite for the role, but the team has expressed concern in regards to his workload before. That could open things up for Glover, or a timeshare, so we'll have to wait and see how it plays out. Regardless, there's no doubt that a change is coming.
2.Trevor Rosenthal (2)St. Louis CardinalsSeung-Hwan OhThere are a lot of problems with the Cardinals right now, but we can't ignore the ones Oh is having. He's yet to have an IP without a H (12 H in 6.2 IP) and has allowed R in four of six appearances. It wasn't long ago that Rosenthal was among best closer options and should be viewed as next up. However the team didn't utilize him in back-to-back games, and that should give some question as to his short-term availability for the role.
3.Brad Hand (4)San Diego PadresBrandon MaurerThe Padres could turn to Ryan Buchter now, or maybe they just wait until Carter Capps is healthy to make a change. That said Hand has been the best performer in the early season, is working as one of the primary setup men and has seen Maurer struggle. If a change is deemed necessary now (which is possible), Hand should get the opportunity.
4.Hector Neris (3)Philadelphia PhilliesJoaquin BenoitIf the Phillies wanted Neris to get the role so badly they would've given him a chance before Benoit. Granted, if Benoit struggles they will be forced to give him a try, but one blown save won't be enough to make it happen. That said, Neris has to be watched closely at this point.
5.J.J. Hoover (5)Arizona DiamondbacksFernando RodneyThe problem in Arizona is that they don't have a clear alternative, but Rodney's struggles should ultimately lead to a change. for now it's Hoover who could step in if needed, though Archie Bradley could be transitioned into the role.

Dropped Off Rankings:

  • None

Others We’re Monitoring:

  • Kyle Barraclough – Miami Marlins
  • Luke Gregerson – Houston Astros
  • Corey Knebel – Milwaukee Brewers
  • Joakim Soria – Kansas City Royals
  • Arodys Vizcaino – Atlanta Braves
  • Justin Wilson – Detroit Tigers

Injured Setup Men To Monitor:

  • Jake Barrett – Arizona Diamondbacks
  • Carter Capps – San Diego Padres

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