Fantasy Baseball: The Closer Report's MLB Closer Power Rankings

Todd Farino@truegurufarinoCorrespondent IJuly 4, 2011

SEATTLE - JUNE 28:  Closing pitcher Craig Kimbrel #46 of the Atlanta Braves celebrates with catcher Brian McCann #16 after defeating the Seattle Mariners 5-4 at Safeco Field on June 28, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

The Closer Report: Closer Power Rankings

Every two weeks throughout the baseball season, The Closer Report will provide the Closer Report Power Rankings. These power rankings are not based on a closer's legacy, name or team. It's based on a formula that considers the pitcher's historical stats, current stats, reliability, injury and, more importantly, what the closer is doing recently. Brought to you by Todd Farino of Last Updated 7/3/2011

Rank/Closer/Stats (Saves-Wins-ERA-WHIP-K)

1. Craig Kimbrel, Braves (24-2-2.57-1.12-67) (Prev. Rank: 4)

Kimbrel is back and closing well.  He saved five games and pitched near perfect baseball.  Over six innings, Kimbrel gave up no runs, two hits, and struck out 12!  He dropped his ERA nearly .50 in just two weeks.

2. Joel Hanrahan, Pirates (24-0-1.41-0.97-33) (Prev. Rank: 2) 

 Hanrahan continues to roll. He added five more saves over the past two weeks and is still perfect in that category.  He is amongst the leagues leaders (closers) in all categories expect Ks.

3. Brian Wilson, Giants (24-6-3.03-1.42-36) (Prev. Rank: 1)

Wilson had a very active two weeks.  He was four-for-six in saves opportunities and notched a win with one of those blown saves. Before blowing back-to-back saves, Wilson had a string of 12 straight saves and only one run in that time frame.

4. Huston Street, Rockies (24-0-3.46-1.13-31) (Prev. Rank: 7) 

 Street had a two-week period he needed. He notched four saves and gave a lone run over 6.1 innings.  He is tied for the lead league in saves and continues to run wild in the national League.

5. John Axford, Brewers (21-2-2.41-1.29-49) (Prev. Rank: 3)

Axford added two saves over the last period and now has a consecutive save streak up to 18.  He added seven in the month of June and opened up July with another.  He continues to excel.

6. Heath Bell, Padres (24-2-2.31-1.11-26) (Prev. Rank: 11)

Bell had an incredible two weeks. It included six saves and four in consecutive days.  He finished seven-for-seven in June and has quickly got himself back up with the elite closers in the league.  His strikeout total is still low (26), and that is hurting his fantasy value some.

7. Mariano Rivera, Yankees (21-1-1.91-1.03-28) (Prev. Rank: 5)  

 Rivera had an active two weeks.  He was 4/5 in save chances, blowing one on Sunday.  He threw 5.2 innings, giving up one run and striking out eight.  That is the biggest stat of the period for Rivera, who only had 20 Ks in 27.1 innings.

8. Brandon League, Mariners (22-0-3.38-1.04-23) (Prev. Rank: 6)  

 Only two saves for the Mariners closer.  He saw plenty of action, pitching 4.2 innings.  He looked bad in one outing where he gave up three unearned runs, but still has 12 consecutive saves in his triple-play of blown saves.

9. Leo Nunez, Marlins (23-0-3.76-1.23-38) (Prev. Rank: 17)

The Marlins are back to winnings and Nunez received four saves in the process.  He scattered the saves over the period and gave up three runs in 7.1 innings.

10. Drew Storen, Nationals (20-5-2.76-0.97-32) (Prev. Rank: 10) 

 Storen broke the 20-save barrier for the first time in his young career with three saves this period.  He did blow his third save of the season on June 24, giving up three runs.  He did also add a win.

11. Jordan Walden, Angels (19-1-2.95-1.23-39) (Prev. Rank: 18) 

 "W" is a for WOW, not WALDEN. Walden made six appearances over the past two weeks.  The results? Three saves, three blown saves, a win and a loss.  He blew three consecutive games and his manager stuck with him.  That is love. 

12. Jose Valverde, Detroit (20-2-3.00-1.36-35) (Prev. Rank: 13) 

 Valverde had a strong period, notching four saves and continues to be one of two closers without a blown save this season.  He did get roughed up Friday night for three runs and the loss, raising his ERA above three for the first time since June 5.

13. Sergio Santos, White Sox (18-2-2.93-1.05-53) (Prev. Rank: 21)

Santos racked up six saves and 14 strikeouts over the past two weeks.  He easily had the best two weeks of any closer, throwing seven innings and giving up one run.

14. Francisco Cordero, Reds (17-3-1.49-0.85-26) (Prev. Rank: 14) 

 Cordero added two saves over the past two weeks and overall is 17-of-19.  He has been incredibly effective for the Reds this year. He gave up one run in June (spanned 10 appearances).  He has been a dream come true for fantasy owners.

15. Francisco Rodriguez, Mets (20-2-3.40-1.46-42) (Prev. Rank: 9)

Terrible period for K-Rod.  He recorded only one save and a win in 5.2 innings of work.  He also blew a save and gave up three runs in the process, recording only three Ks.

16. Carlos Marmol, Cubs (16-2-2.35-1.18-50) (Prev. Rank: 20)

Another solid period for the Cubs Closer. Marmol recorded two saves and blew a save allowing an inherited runner to score.  He hit the 50 K plateau and lowered his WHIPERA to 3.53.

17. J.J. Putz, Diamondbacks (21-1-3.12-1.01-33) (Prev. Rank: 8) 

 Putz got beat up and promptly placed on the DL.  He recorded three saves before taking a loss and blowing a save on a two-run bomb to Carlos Santana.  He was promptly placed on the DL with tendinitis in his shoulder.

18. Chris Perez, Indians (19-2-2.37-1.22-20) (Prev. Rank: 12)

Perez only pitched four innings in a slow period for the Indians closer.  He notched two saves and gave up one run in the process.  He did finally achieve 20 Ks, which is terrible for fantasy closers.  He has been very effective overall, 19/20 in saves.

19. Kyle Farnsworth, Rays (17-3-2.08-0.89-23) (Prev. Rank: 15) 

 Weird period for Farnsworth with plenty of action. He notched two saves and got a win blowing another.  Overall, he threw eight innings, giving up  three runs on nine hits and a pair of walks.  Only five Ks.

20. Jonathan Papelbon, Red Sox (17-2-3.58-1.13-44) (Prev. Rank: NR) 

 Papelbon had his best two-week period of the season.  He recorded four saves, five Ks and no runs over 4.2 innings. He also dropped his ERA below 4.00 for the first time since June 3.

21. Neftali Feliz, Rangers (16-0-3.19-1.32-22) (Prev. Rank: 19)

Feliz saw plenty of action this period, but only managed two saves in three chances.  He gave up four runs in his fourth blown save of the season.  He gave up five total runs over 5.1 innings of work.


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