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Closer Report for Week 17

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News and Notes From Around the Bullpen

  • J.J. Putz threw on back to back days on Friday night and Saturday night here in Sacramento on his rehab assignment. It sounds like he will be activated on Tuesday, and should get the majority of the save chances. I would hold onto David Hernandez though until he records a save.
  • Sean Marshall recorded the only save chance for the Cubs this week, as Marmol was not used in the 9th on Friday. Marmol was used in the 9th on Saturday and Sunday, but I'd still be a bit nervous about him going forward.
  • Vinnie Pestano got the save in the second game of a doubleheader on Monday, but that was after Chris Perez had blown the save in the first game. Looks like Pestano would be the option if Perez were to lose hold of his job.
  • John Axford got the save both times last week, and Francisco Rodriguez pitched the 8th inning in both games and recorded holds. I'd say Axford is pretty safe at this point, and unless he's pitched multiple days in a row, Rodriguez seems unlikely to get too many save chances.
  • Joe Nathan has recorded his last 3 save opportunities, and is locked in as the main option in Minnesota now.
  • Jason Isringhausen had 2 saves this week, and a win as well. It appears less likely that the Mets will trade Isringhausen, but instead will have him mentor Bobby Parnell for the remainder of the season.
  • Philly's bullpen isn't any clearer after the week, as Ryan Madson recorded 2 saves and Antonio Bastardo had 2 as well. I think it's going to be Madson for the rest of the season, but I could see both Bastardo and Brad Lidge getting save chances as well.
  • The Heath Bell rumors continued, as it appears that the Rangers are now zeroing in on him as a trade possibility, but it appears that Mike Adams could be dealt as well. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if a majority of the Padres' bullpen was dealt for prospects before next Sunday.
My Rankings After the Jump...

Closer Rankings from Today Forward [Change from Last Week]

  1. Brian Wilson (Giants)
  2. Heath Bell (Padres)
  3. Mariano Rivera (Yankees)
  4. Huston Street (Rockies)
  5. Joel Hanrahan (Pirates)
  6. Leo Nunez (Marlins)
  7. Jonathan Papelbon (Red Sox)
  8. Neftali Feliz (Rangers)
  9. Joakim Soria (Royals)
  10. Craig Kimbrel (Braves)
  11. Drew Storen (Nationals) [+1]
  12. Jose Valverde (Tigers) [+1]
  13. Carlos Marmol (Cubs) [-2]
  14. Andrew Bailey (Athletics)
  15. Francisco Cordero (Reds)
  16. Brandon League (Mariners)
  17. John Axford (Brewers)
  18. Joe Nathan (Twins) [+3]
  19. Chris Perez (Indians) [-1]
  20. Kyle Farnsworth (Rays) [-1]
  21. Jordan Walden (Angels) [-1]
  22. Fernando Salas (Cardinals)
  23. Sergio Santos (White Sox)
  24. Mark Melancon (Astros)
  25. Kevin Gregg (Orioles)
  26. Frank Francisco (Blue Jays)
  27. Javy Guerra (Dodgers) [+2]
  28. Antonio Bastardo/Ryan Madson (Phillies) [-1]
  29. David Hernandez/J.J. Putz (Diamondbacks) [-1]
  30. Jason Isringhausen (Mets)
Top Non-Closing Relievers Most Likely to Get the Chance
  1. Mike Adams (Padres)
  2. Chad Qualls (Padres)
  3. Francisco Rodriguez (Brewers)
  4. Jon Rauch (Blue Jays)
  5. Grant Balfour (Athletics)

Trade Candidates Before July 31st
  1. Heath Bell
  2. Joakim Soria
  3. Mike Adams
  4. Leo Nunez
  5. Andrew Bailey