The 2023 MLB Fantasy Closer Chart: All Projected Closers (Pre-Season Edition 2.0)

It’s fantasy baseball season, which means yet another year of attempting to figure out which relievers are set to pick up the all-important save in games. Granted, there are those who sit among the top of the food chain. But, there are also teams that do have a lack of clarity, with regards to whom will receive most of the save opportunities. Let’s try to help with that, as we take a look at MLB closer projections for 2023.

Related: 2023 MLB Power Rankings: Which pitchers are favorites for the NL Cy Young award?

MLB Projected Closers for Fantasy

Let’s start off with the projected closers in the American League:

American League

TeamCloserNext Man Up
Baltimore OriolesFélix BautistaDillon Tate
Boston Red SoxKenley JansenChris Martin
Chicago White SoxKendall GravemanReynaldo López
Cleveland GuardiansEmmanuel ClaseJames Karinchak
Detroit TigersAlex LangeJason Foley
Houston AstrosRyan PresslyRafael Montero
Kansas City RoyalsScott BarlowDylan Coleman
Los Angeles AngelsJimmy HergetCarlos Estevez
Minnesota TwinsJhoan DuranJorge López
New York YankeesClay HolmesWandy Peralta
Oakland AthleticsDany JiménezZach Jackson
Seattle MarinersPaul SewaldAndrés Muñoz
Tampa Bay RaysPete FairbanksJason Adam
Texas RangersJose LeclercJoe Barlow
Toronto Blue JaysJordan RomanoAdam Cimber

Not much has changed here, but there are a few things to note about this updated list. For one, Orioles closer Félix Bautista should start the regular season on the active roster after some injury concerns earlier in the spring. Two other teams to watch, though, will be what the Angels and Athletics do early on in the season.

For Los Angeles. new addition Carlos Estevez has struggled in camp, while Jimmy Herget has flourished. Herget notched nine saves last season, and it wouldn’t be a shock that see him get save opportunities as opposed to Estevez. Ryan Tepera also has to be in the mix in Anaheim. Meanwhile in Oakland, it’s virtually a three-person race between Domingo Acevedo, Zach Jackson, and Dany Jiménez.

National League

Now, a look at the NL closers:

TeamCloserNext Man Up
Arizona DiamondbacksScott McGoughAndrew Chafin
Atlanta BravesRaisel IglesiasA.J. Minter
Chicago CubsBrad BoxbergerBrandon Hughes
Cincinnati RedsAlexis DíazTony Santillan
Colorado RockiesDaniel BardPierce Johnson
Los Angeles DodgersEvan PhillipsBrusdar Graterol
Miami MarlinsTanner ScottDylan Floro
Milwaukee BrewersDevin WilliamsMatt Bush
New York MetsDavid RobertsonAdam Ottavino
Philadelphia PhilliesCraig KimbrelSeranthony Domínguez
Pittsburgh PiratesDavid BednarWil Crowe
San Diego PadresJosh HaderRobert Suarez
San Francisco GiantsCamilo DovalTaylor Rogers
St. Louis CardinalsRyan HelsleyGiovanny Gallegos
Washington NationalsKyle FinneganCarl Edwards Jr.

Arguably the biggest change to this list is the removal of star closer Edwin Díaz, after he sustained a torn patellar tendon in the World Baseball Classic. With Díaz out, expect David Robertson to be a prime candidate to get saves, with Adam Ottavino lurking in the background.

Arizona’s situation is also one to watch, with RHP Mark Melancon set to miss the start of the 2023 season. Relievers Miguel Castro, Andrew Chafin, and Joe Mantiply could all get looks for a team that has stated it won’t begin the year with a set closer. Newcomer Scott McGough, who’s had a very strong camp after a multi-year stint in Japan, may very well be the favorite to get saves opportunities, though.

A couple of things to keep in mind with these lists. While this list does consider the individual most likely to get a save as the “closer, ” managers in recent years have opted to use relievers usually reserved for the closer role a bit differently. Rather than save the team’s top reliever for the ninth inning, there have been many situations in which that individual comes in for either the seventh or eighth inning to face the middle of the lineup and the opposing team’s best hitters.

In this day of age, keep that in mind with pitchers that carry the “closer” role.

We should note that this chart is subject to change, due to injuries, role changes, etc. This chart will be updated throughout the year, to reflect changes.

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