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  1. Mike, nice list, but one small correction. You need another category above “Mortal Locks.” The new one should be called “Immortal Locks,” which Mariano Rivera being its only inhabitant.

    Comment by MikeD — March 30, 2011 @ 12:34 pm

  2. Terry Francona is as loyal to his guys as they come. All of the Red Sox fans calling for Pap’s job are the same ones that claimed Lars Anderson was going to be as good as Mark Teixeira – not thinking things through completely. Bard has proved he can shut down the 8th. The Red Sox are in a position where they are going to win now. Papelbon will probably leave next off season and have a major payday thanks to the number of saves he puts up in 2011. I digress to White Sox fans as to whether or not they feel Jenks is going to steal his job. John Wettland was never in fear of losing his job when Mariano was setting up saves for him.

    Comment by Sterling — March 30, 2011 @ 12:39 pm

  3. I would put Broxton in the Good Grip category. Mattingley has firmly stood behind him, and both Kuo (scary elbow) and Jansen (lack of experience) have big warts in any chance to succeed him.

    Comment by AA — March 30, 2011 @ 1:00 pm

  4. Jon Rauch is supposedly starting the season as the closer. If he does well, is there a chance he can keep the job until they have a reason to put Frank Francisco in?

    Comment by Matt — March 30, 2011 @ 1:04 pm

  5. Isn’t the whole purpose of a “job security for closers” post in a fantasy portion of the site kind of defeated by placing two players from the same team both in the “Good Grip” category? To me that says neither one of them has a particularly good grip.

    Comment by Graham — March 30, 2011 @ 1:05 pm

  6. Matt, Anthopoulos said that they brought Franky in to be there closer and that’s what he will be when he is 100%.

    Comment by Josh — March 30, 2011 @ 2:10 pm

  7. This list seems to based more on gut and performance rather than what’s been said by the managers and teams over the course of ST. Not really helpful if that’s the case.

    Comment by Sal — March 30, 2011 @ 2:19 pm

  8. Heath Bell should not be in the mortal lock category. Simply because he stands a good chance of being traded this year. Gonzalez is gone. Latos is out. When the Padres are out of contention, Bell stands a better than 50/50 chance of being traded. Padres have Adams and Gregorson to take his place. A no brainer trade really.

    Chris Perez is a close case to be bumped up. I assume he wasn’t based on proven effectiveness. But Cleveland isn’t in a pressure contention spot where he will have a short leash. And Cleveland doesn’t really have anyone to take his place. I understand no one gets all excited about Perez, but from a fantasy stability point of view, Perez’s situation is about as close to perfect as it gets for a closer. Just based on that alone, Perez is very underrated this year. Not saying to move him alongside Soria, but it’s almost like he needs an asterisk which says he can only beat himself. And he gets nine lives.

    Comment by Hans — March 30, 2011 @ 2:30 pm

  9. I agree. Unless Paps is clearly struggling, which I can’t imagine him struggling to that degree, it’s his job in 2011. He’s a lock.

    Comment by Telo — March 30, 2011 @ 2:38 pm

  10. I thought hanrahan was closing for Pittsburgh

    Comment by adohaj — March 30, 2011 @ 2:40 pm

  11. Does Andrew Bailey really have a firm grasp on his closer role? With Fuentes and Balfour (& maybe even Wuertz) there, along with his possibly diminished stuff based on current arm injuries, I’d put him the next tier down.

    Comment by JohnnyComeLately — March 30, 2011 @ 3:03 pm

  12. i think nathan should be moved down a tier.

    i agree that if healthy he is a lock but that’s a big if. his first year back from tommy john he’s going to be shaky and while gardy is going to stand by him as best he can if he struggles to much capps might be made the closer for part of the season at least. and even if nathan is the closer the whole year i would expect capps to get at least 10 saves

    Comment by me — March 30, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

  13. I was surprised by Hanrahan (he seems shaky b/c of the way he was used last year with Meek and also b/c of the trade risk).

    Also didn’t think Nunez was that shaky in Florida…. That’s disconcerting as someone who drafted him thinking that he was safe enough even if not a fantastic reliever

    Comment by John K — March 30, 2011 @ 3:31 pm

  14. Nunez is only shaky because he’s terrible, not because there’s some sort of alternative. So that’s the good kind of shaky.

    Comment by JohnnyComeLately — March 30, 2011 @ 3:58 pm

  15. K-Rod is another guy who stands to be dealt if the Mets fall out of contention. I agree with Graham in that two guys from the same team can’t be in the “Good Grip” tier. One has to assume that if one guy is lights out, he will wrestle control of the job. A good example is when Soriano and Gonzalez were splitting the closer duties in Atl a couple of years back until Soriano forced the hand of Bobby Cox by pitching so well.

    Comment by boxx — March 30, 2011 @ 5:45 pm

  16. As a BoSox fan, the Paps situation just smells like it’s going to end badly – probably around, oh, the trading deadline when a number of former franchise stars have managed to shoot their way out of town in recent years. Yes, Francona is loyal but you’ve never really been booed until you’ve been booed in Fenway Park. Something about the resonance of those ancient wooden rafters. Papelbon in particular lets it get to him. Maybe not “Shaky” but “Good Grip” is probably over-stating it.

    Comment by syoung — March 30, 2011 @ 6:41 pm

  17. I’d move Franklin up one rank, not because he is great but his history overall is too strong to be in that tier.

    Comment by Ender — March 30, 2011 @ 10:38 pm

  18. Rivera will save under thirty games this year and spend time on the DL. Soriano will save ten to twelve games.

    Comment by Borden — March 30, 2011 @ 11:09 pm

  19. What Mattingley says now and how he deals with blown saves are another story. From what I have read, LA may have Broxton on a short leash this year.

    Comment by ray — March 30, 2011 @ 11:26 pm

  20. I’d move Lyon down to “run for cover”. He’s had a terrible spring, and after 2 straight years of outperforming his peripherals, he’s cruisin’ for a bruisin’. I own Mark Melancon in my fairly deep 12 team league….I honestly think he could take over this year.

    Comment by R M — March 31, 2011 @ 12:58 am

  21. ==========================
    Good Grips

    Brandon League/David Aardsma
    Jonny Venters/Craig Kimbrel
    ==========================
    now what is the point in telling us this?

    anyone can look at a team and say “if you have both Player A
    AND(!) Player B, then you will have one solid fantasy closer.
    oh ya but by the way… you you will be burning 2 roster spots ahaahaha”

    seems like the very definition of this tier’s name should exclude these guys.

    Comment by cs3 — March 31, 2011 @ 4:46 am

  22. I’d leave him – until Wainwright’s injury I predicted McClellan into the closer’s role by July. Boggs or Motte may still have a shot.

    Comment by gnomez — April 1, 2011 @ 12:23 am

  23. I like how soria is a MORTAL LOCK!!!!!!!

    Comment by Pat G — June 1, 2011 @ 4:13 pm

  24. Three of the “mortal locks” (Soria, Feliz and to some extent Marmol) look like they may be in danger of losing their jobs. This is why it’s not a good idea to put stock in lists like this.

    Comment by J. Welderson — June 6, 2011 @ 6:01 pm

  25. Marmol is not a mortal lock.

    Comment by J. Baker — July 17, 2011 @ 1:14 pm

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