Which MLB closers could be on the hot seat this season? Here are a few that could be facing competition.
The closer role is one of the most mentally taxing jobs in MLB. If they close the game, they don’t get the praise they deserve. Their main stat doesn’t get them a surefire Hall of Fame slot. They also get burned for not pitching a whole lot. But when things go bad, they don’t get better very easily. They take all of the blame. All Star closers have faded fast after a small amount of struggles. Players like J.J. Putz, Brian Fuentes and Eric Gagne all had quick falls from their dominant levels. It seems to happen every year.
The closer role seems to be ever changing from team to team. Besides a select few greats who have played for long stretches as a team’s closer, most of the time its a revolving door. Guys are in and out within a few seasons, whether they are traded or lose their mojo. This season will be no different. We are bound to see a few closers lose their spots in 2017, whether it is right away or down the stretch. Some will be surprises, like perennial All Stars and fantasy studs. Others will be fringe guys who barely made it and are on a short leash.
With that combination, it is hard to predict who exactly will no longer be the man in the ninth inning. Some closer situations, on paper, look incredibly solid. Others look weak. Some weak ones will pan out, and some solid ones won’t. Here are four closers who are most likely to lose their jobs in 2017.