Draft Guide Preview

MLB Fantasy Baseball Bullpen Projections

by NBC Sports EDGE Staff
Updated On: March 21, 2023, 4:08 pm ET

With the World Baseball Classic championship on deck and full-fledged Spring Training action every day, baseball is back in all of its glory. Of course, regular season action isn't quite here yet, but it's just around the corner. With fantasy managers everywhere preparing for drafts, we're continuing our series of looks at our all-new 2023 Rotoworld Baseball Draft Guide

This jam-packed edition has all the information and features you need to prepare for every single draft. Equipped with in-depth player profiles, positional rankings for multiple scoring formats, projections, tiers and positional reports, managers can feel confident navigating the 2023 fantasy landscape. Plus, the draft guide features exclusive columns from our experts, in addition to mock drafts, statistics, scoring leaders and more.

Today's feature is from the Closer Report, one of our heftiest and most detailed tools. The Closer Report breaks down every Major League bullpen, from the lockdown elites to the superb setup men. Having a variety of reliable relievers is an integral piece of your fantasy roster and the Closer Report offers you in-depth details on what to expect from each reliever in their respective bullpen.

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We're going to take a look at three separate bullpens today, all facing different situations: the Mets, Brewers and Twins. Let's dive right in:


New York Mets Closer Report

Top three relievers and projections:

    Age    SV   HLD    K
David Robertson    37    26     4   70
Adam Ottavino    37     8    17   73
Brooks Raley    34      1    18   64


Bullpen Overview: The Mets re-signed Edwin Díaz to a five-year, $102 million contract – the largest financial commitment to a relief pitcher in baseball history – to keep him in New York long-term after he converted 32 saves last year to accompany a ridiculous 1.31 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 118/18 K/BB ratio across 62 innings. Unfortunately, a freak knee injury during a celebration in the World Baseball Classic is expected to keep him sidelined until 2024, throwing this bullpen into question. David Robertson, who signed a one-year, $10 million contract over the winter, is most likely to step in at the closer role. The Mets also re-signed Adam Ottavino this winter and traded for southpaw Brooks Raley, so there's still some solid arms here even if it isn't as deep as a group as one would hope for a World Series contender. Odds are we'll see some in-season additions at some point. 



Milwaukee Brewers Closer Report

Top three relievers and projections:

    Age    SV   HLD    K
Devin Williams    28    32     1   82
Matt Bush    37     2    19   66
Jake Cousins    28     4    15   67


Bullpen Overview: Devin Williams finally completed his inevitable ascension to the Brewers' closing role in early August after southpaw Josh Hader was jettisoned to the Padres in a trade deadline blockbuster. The 28-year-old right-hander leaned on his signature “Airbender” changeup last year to convert 15 of his 17 save chances to go along with a sparkling 1.93 ERA, 1.01 WHIP and 96/30 K/BB ratio across 60 2/3 innings. He should be selected as a top-five closer in fantasy drafts this spring. The central question for Milwaukee is how the rest of their bullpen will shake out with trusty veterans Taylor Rogers and Brad Boxberger departing via free agency. There's plenty of time to add some experienced relief depth, but there are a lot of unproven arms being thrust into high-leverage spots. Transitioning lefty Aaron Ashby to a full-time relief weapon would give this unit a much-needed boost.



Minnesota Twins Closer Report

Top three relievers and projections:

    Age    SV   HLD    K
Jorge Lopez    30    23     7   70
Jhoan Duran    25     13    18   89
Griffin Jax    28      2    18   76


Bullpen Overview: It's only a matter of time before electrifying right-hander Jhoan Duran takes over as Minnesota's closer of the future. The 25-year-old phenom put together a remarkable rookie campaign last year, converting all eight of his save chances, and finishing with a microscopic 1.86 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and 89/16 K/BB ratio across 67 2/3 innings (57 appearances). He's poised to split closing duties, at least in the early stages of this season, with veteran Jorge López, who was acquired from the Orioles in early August at the trade deadline. The Twins elected to hang onto another experienced veteran reliever in Emilio Pagán as extra setup depth, and they should also get a boost from the return of Jorge Alcala, who is expected to be healthy after he missed nearly all of last season due to an elbow injury. Former starter Griffin Jax has seemingly found his niche as an effective multi-inning reliever.


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