In this edition of EndScore Report, we speak about New York Yankees closer, Mariano Rivera and his setting the all-time MLB saves record. Trevor Hoffman is mentioned and wondered about if he were on the Yankees. How about the era versus era debate? Would Bruce Sutter or Rollie Fingers fare better? Either way, Rivera has to be considered the greatest off all-time when you put the postseason equation into the mix. Give it a LISTEN!
A lot has been made of the Toronto Blue Jays’ closer situation this offseason, from losing Kevin Gregg, potential ninth-inning man Scott Downs and one-time 30-save guy Jeremy Accardo to reaching a deal with Toronto main-stay Jason Frasor to the acquisitions of Frank Francisco, Octavio Dotel and Jon Rauch. That’s a lot of star power both leaving and entering Toronto’s bullpen. But what few have been talking about is another pick up in former Washington Nationals closer Chad Cordero.
When Trevor Hoffman announced his retirement, a lot of people quickly spoke up about whether this guy was worthy of the Hall of Fame or not, and if so, should it be as a first-ballot member. As a career reliever (he never started a game), he has not had the same opportunities in the game as a starting pitcher or a position player, but he has silently helped define the closer’s role in the bullpen; at least as silently as a guy with his career number can.
How long into a season should a team wait before considering a change? Well, if you’re a fantasy team owner, you’ve probably already made a deal or two. If you were an MLB general manager, when would you think a change is appropriate? We’re into week two of this young season, and already there are dozens of players suffering through midseason-worthy slumps. Whether Spring Training wasn’t long enough or the players are just overwhelmed, they need to shape up and do so quickly.
Have you ever wondered why relief pitchers don’t win the Cy Young Award more often? We’re not talking about the guys who come in to clean up a mess when down by seven runs. We’re talking about the guys who come in the tough situations, whether it is a two-inning setup man with an ERA under 1.50 who keeps his team in the game, or the “lights out” closer who shuts the door 45 out of 50 times. These are the guys who deserve just as much recognition as a 20-game winner, but just aren’t taken as seriously.
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