NL West Closing Pitching Report

Here we are in the third week of baseball, and it has been an interesting one. A lot of the hot topics in baseball right now are the PED suspension of Starling Marte, the Yankees current hot streak, and the surgery of Clay Buchholz. An always relevant fantasy topic however, is the closer situation. Just like any fantasy league, their value is dependent on the scoring structure. If saves or holds don’t get you anything, then their value drops. If you do have these categories, or get points for them, then it is important to roster a couple of solid closers. We’re going to look at the depth charts of these teams and determine where each one sits.

Arizona Diamondbacks-

Fernando Rodney
IP H ER K BB W SV L ERA WHIP K/9
6.1 7 6 8 5 1 5 0 8.53 1.89 11.37

Rodney ranks 18th (points wise) amongst closers currently, and there’s no immediate threat that he will lose his job anytime soon. According to the team’s official website, Tim Wilhelmson would be next in-line. However, Randall Delgado and J.J. Hoover have been given more work with 7.2 and 6.2 innings pitched respectively.

Colorado Rockies-

Greg Holland
IP H ER K BB W SV L ERA WHIP K/9
8.0 5 2 9 4 0 8 0 2.25 1.13 10.13

Greg Holland has started off really well. The magic number for Holland thus far has been eight: He’s played eight games, has eight innings pitched, and has eight saves. He is only owned in 89.6% of ESPN leagues, so if you need help getting saves, this would be a guy you should pick up. 

Los Angeles Dodgers-

Kenley Jansen
IP H ER K BB W SV L ERA WHIP K/9
4.2 5 2 6 0 0 3 0 3.86 1.07 11.57

This is not the best start for a guy who’s one of the best closers in the game right now. That being said, its been a respectable start to the season for Jansen. He has a very solid WHIP stat line, and has three saves in five appearances, with a no-decision in the other two outings. He is owned in 98.5% of ESPN leagues, so if you’re an owner of Jansen, hold tight, because he’ll get back into regular form as the season moves along.

San Diego Padres-

Brandon Maurer
IP H ER K BB W SV L ERA WHIP K/9
4.2 5 3 5 1 0 1 1 5.79 1.29 9.64

It’s been a rough start for Maurer this year, but it’s not like we expected him to be a lights-out either. Brandon Maurer is only owned in 42.5% of ESPN leagues, and unless you’re streaming closers for favorable matchups, or in a super deep dynasty league, I would pass on him as waiver pick-up. He is probably going to be the primary closer for the Padres, as I don’t see anyone on their roster much better than him.

San Francisco Giants-

Mark Melancon
IP H ER K BB W SV L ERA WHIP K/9
4.2 8 2 6 1 0 3 1 3.86 1.93 11.57

Much like Jansen, Melancon has yet to get off to a super hot start, but has shown a decent start to the season. Of the five games he’s played in so far, Opening Day against the D-Backs has been his worst outing so far. As the season continues to unfold, he’ll get better, and if you are thinking about ditching this guy, I urge you to give him a few more outings. A closer that’s in no danger of losing his job is not something you want to let go of. 

The NL West features some of the best closers in the game right now. All of these guys, with the exception of Brandon Maurer, I believe are worth keeping on the roster. If you’re pretty deep in the closer department, you should be able to get a solid return on these guys in a potential trade.

If I had to rank these guys for the rest of the season I would go: Jansen, Melancon, Holland, Rodney, and then Maurer. Keep in mind that we’re very early in a long baseball season, so don’t look past someone that’s under performing quite yet. 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

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