Projecting saves: Will Grilli, Mo set pace? 

May, 31, 2013
We're nearly two months into the season, and now is a perfect time to look closer at your closers to see if they're doing the job you expect from them. Saves and stolen bases are the easiest categories to move up in for fantasy owners after two months of the season, because those statistics are so finite. Craig Kimbrel saves games. Aroldis Chapman saves games. And you know what, so do the more unheralded Edward Mujica, Glen Perkins and yes, even Kevin Gregg. So let's conclude "season predictions week" with the pitchers I think will end up among the top 10 in saves. Because we saved the best for last.

1. Mariano Rivera, New York Yankees (45 saves): It somehow seems fitting that the greatest relief pitcher of all-time will end his career with the league's top save total, and the chance to finish more games in October (which he will). Rivera has actually led the majors in saves in a season only three times, but with a team that no longer wins its games 8-2, he's on pace for a career high. He'll fall short there, but nobody will save more games this year -- or ever.
Craig Kimbrel
Daniel Shirey/US PresswireBraves fireballer Craig Kimbrel has been scored on in just three of his 21 outings this season.

2. Craig Kimbrel, Atlanta Braves (44): Other closers might have a lower ERA, but he's still the best. Only concern is that both his top setup men are done with elbow problems, which hardly means he's next, but can the likes of Cory Gearrin and Anthony Varvaro do the job in front of him? Apparently I believe so.