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Updated 2010 Fantasy Baseball Closer Rankings: Coffee Is for Closers

NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 04:  Mariano Rivera #42 of the New York Yankees throws a pitch against the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Six of the 2009 MLB World Series at Yankee Stadium on November 4, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Yankees won 7-3 to win the series 4 games to 2.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
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Fantasy KnuckleheadsCorrespondent IMarch 28, 2010

This is it gentlemen (and ladies). It’s put up or shut up time. Which closer are you gonna take this season?

I can't think of closers without recalling that irreverent scene in the film Glengarry Glen Ross, perhaps Alec Baldwin’s finest acting moment.

“Coffee is for closers!”

What does it have to do with fantasy baseball? Not a thing. Because in the movie closers are everything, while in fantasy baseball they are next to nothing.

But you need them.

A. Always

B. Be

C. Closing

So what does that mean for us? Since my initial preseason closer rankings, things have changed around the league in the course of one short month.

Joe Nathan , you’re fired.

Kerry Wood , you suck.

Huston Street , put that rosin bag down—rosin is for closers!

Brad Lidge , Andrew Bailey , and Bobby Jenks are all hurting...no coffee for you!

No matter who you grab come draft day, you will spend the entire season “closing.”

All season long there will be injuries, and there will be a closers carousel around baseball: new faces, new names, sleepers, and surprises.

So good managers, even those with Jonathan Broxton or Mariano Rivera, will be keeping tabs on guys that come out of nowhere this season that could be this year’s Andrew Bailey .

There is still a battle in Houston between Brandon Lyon and Matt Lindstrom, as well as in Toronto between Kevin Gregg and Jason Frasor. Keep an eye on these battles this last week before the games start to count.

As we get down to the last week of fantasy drafts, let’s look at the current value of the most volatile position in fantasy baseball.

 

Key

JS = Job Security:  G ood, F air, P oor

In Bold = Guys I’m high on in 2010

 Tier 1TeamJSSuccessor in WaitingOne Liners
1Jonathan BroxtonLADGGeorge SherrillAs safe a bet as it gets.
2Mariano RiveraNYYGPhil HughesLowest WHIP of all 2009 closers.
3Jonathan PapelbonBOSGDaniel BardFly balls and walk stats are rising.
4Joakim SoriaKCGKyle FarnsworthSimilar line to Papelbon, but at a better price.
 Tier 2 
5Billy WagnerATLGTakashi SaitoMy leap of faith in his ability and recovery.
6Francisco RodriguezNYMGKelvim Escobar3.71 ERA in ‘09. Ouch.
7Heath BellSDFEdward MujicaLikely to be traded by the All-Star break
8Andrew BaileyOAKFBrad ZieglerCan he avoid a sophomore slump?
9Francisco CorderoCINGNick MassettNot flashy, but safe. Watch the WHIP.
10Brian WilsonSFGJeremy AffeldtSomehow he gets it done each year.
 Tier 3
11Brian FuentesANAFFernando RodneyLots of saves, but he’ll give you a stroke.
12Jose ValverdeDETFJoel ZumayaCould be a nice surprise comeback.
13Trevor HoffmanMILGLaTroy HawkinsOld reliable. Emphasis on old.
14Huston StreetCOLFFranklin MoralesMorales gets the nod Opening Day.
16Rafael SorianoTBFJ.P. HowellInjury concern, but great stuff.
17Carlos MarmolCHCFAngel GuzmanCardiac kid can throw the heat
18David AardsmaSEAFMark LoweI don’t like this guy, but he’ll get his chances.
19Mike GonzalezBALPJim JohnsonCan he stay healthy?
 Tier 4
19Bobby JenksCHWFMatt ThorntonHe’s not getting much love this season.
20Ryan FranklinSTLFJason MotteFranklin’s struggled; Motte has not.
21Chad QuallsARIFJuan GutierrezShould be ready by Opening Day.
22Jon RauchMINPMatt GuerrierRauch will have a short leash to start.
23Brad LidgePHIPRyan MadsonPlays better in even years; risk/reward pick.
24Frank FranciscoTEXPNeftali FelizHe still has the job...somehow.
25Octavio DotelPITFJoel HanrahanCould be a steal this season.
 Tier 5 
26Matt CappsWASPBrian BruneyCloser on a bad team = opportunity.
27Kerry WoodCLEFChris PerezPerez will take over sometime this season.
28Matt LindstromHOUPBrandon LyonHandcuff these two.
29Leo NunezFLAPDan MeyerHe walks too damn many batters.
30Jason FrasorTORPKevin GreggIf Frasor can keep Gregg at bay...
31Franklin MoralesCOLXBetancourtHe’s lethal, and Huston Street is hurt.
32Matt ThorntonCHWXN/AIf Jenks falters...

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Here’s a look at our Closer Breakouts, Busts, and Sleepers.

For those interested in the infamous "Coffee Is for Closers" scene, you can find it here.

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