Fantasy Baseball Expert Draft Rankings & Advice: Relief Pitchers
The 2023 fantasy baseball season will be here before we know it. That means it’s time for you to prepare for your fantasy baseball drafts. Beyond our draft prep articles and mock draft simulator, we will have you covered with 2023 fantasy baseball rankings. You can find our updated 2023 fantasy baseball expert consensus rankings here. And below you’ll find rankings from our analysts to help you prepare for the 2023 fantasy baseball season.
2023 Fantasy Baseball Relief Pitcher Draft Rankings
Fantasy Baseball Advice
Yes, that is Timmy Trumpet you’re hearing as Edwin Diaz enters the chat. He may have just brought his Statcast page to contract negotiations before signing his five-year, $102 million deal to return to New York. The 28-year-old was in the 100th percentile in xBA, K%, Whiff%, xSLG, and xERA/xOBA, which is exactly what you are looking for from a fantasy closer while racking up 32 saves. His xFIP was a ridiculous 1.04, and he stranded 90.4% of runners on base. While chances are good Diaz will not repeat these numbers in 2023, there is nothing to suggest that he won’t return as an elite closer option with job security on a team that should win plenty of games. He’ll probably cost you a second-round pick, but there isn’t much downside if you’re willing to pay for saves.
Josh Hader may come at a discount in 2023 due to those who fixate on a stretch of outings in August 2022 or look only at his final ERA. The surface stats are much uglier than fantasy managers have been used to seeing. The 28-year-old ended with a 5.22 ERA and 1.28 WHIP, both of which are career highs by a longshot. Looking beneath that, however, shows that his xERA was 3.51 with an xFIP of 2.94. His K% and Whiff% remain in elite status, and he still walked away with 36 saves. This is still a player with Top-3 closer abilities, so fantasy managers in leagues where others shy away due to a few outings in August should draft, sit back, and enjoy.
Jordan Romano saved 36 games for the Blue Jays in 2022, and he is the clear-cut closer going into 2023. The two knocks against him are that he walks more batters than he should, and his xERA and xFIP were an entire run above the actuals. All the same, Romano struck out 73 batters in 64 innings while maintaining a 2.11 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. The 29-year-old does not fit the profile of a truly elite closer, but he should collect another 30 saves, securing a good base in 5×5 leagues.
Beyond our fantasy baseball content, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Baseball Tools as you prepare for your draft this season. From our free mock Draft Simulator – which allows you to mock draft against realistic opponents – to our Draft Assistant – that optimizes your picks with expert advice – we’ve got you covered this fantasy baseball draft season.
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