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First To Third: The Real Best Closer In The AL & A New Ace In Queens

First To Third: The Real Best Closer In The AL & A New Ace In Queens

1. The Best Closer In The AL Isn’t named Kimbrel Or Chapman

60 saves in today’s MLB is something to behold, it’s even more impressive when that closer is on a team with one of the longest postseason droughts in sports, not just baseball. Enter Edwin Diaz of the Seattle Mariners, who is currently on pace for 60 saves, currently at 25.

The Mariners record for saves by the All-Star break is 29 by Kazuhiro Sasaki in 2001 when Sasaki became the only Seattle pitcher to lead the Majors in saves at the break (he was tied with Mariano Rivera). The only other Mariner with more saves at the break than Diaz’s 25 was Fernando Rodney 27 in ’14.

Diaz likely won’t touch the MLB record of 38 saves at the break, set by the Angels’ Rodriguez in his historic 2008 season, but Rodriguez didn’t have the strikeout numbers of Diaz, as K-Rod only totaled 77 for the entire season that year.

Diaz has been dominant, even in the toughest of situations. When entering a game with a one-run lead, he’s recorded 15 of 17 saves with a 1.04 ERA, 31 strikeouts and four walks while allowing just two runs in 17 1/3 innings. The Mariners are 17-0 in those games.


As I touched on in the past edition of first to third, Seattle is now 21-8 in one-run games, and Diaz is the reason why. Yes, you can chose regression and start backing teams on the run line at +1.5 Vs. Seattle, or just pay up for the money line, because their closer is all-world right now.

2. Miguel Cabrera Falters Again

Coming into last years MLB season, Miguel Cabrera was in the business of handing out free money. For the last 8 seasons prior, Miguel Cabrera’s home run total prop was set at 30.5, and he went over eight out of nine seasons before last seasons injury. Fast forward to this season, and the same thing has happened as Miguel Cabrera is now out for the year following a tear of his bicep.

Miguel Cabrera is definitely a future hall of fame player, and while outside of some Tigers magical runs with Verlander and him up front, The Detroit front office largely gave him a losing hand year after year, but Cabrera was still the measuring stick for personal success in the league. His power is gone, and in the future, as much as it pains me as one of my favorite players of all time-it’s time to short his stock in the player-future market in 2019.

3. Noah Syndergaard Isn’t The Ace Of The Mets Staff Anymore

Does he probably have the best pure talent on the team? yes, yes he does. But as is an all-too-familiar site for Mets fans, Syndergaard has again hit the disabled list without a timetable to return. As I stated above, in my eyes he has passed the torch onto Jacob Degrom, who in his last six stars has a 0.88 ERA, allowing one run or fewer in four of them, and The Mets are 1-5 in those outings.

The Mets without question are the laughing stock of Major League Baseball right now, with even teams like The Marlins not quite understanding how they can waste so much talent. They also released Adrian Gonzalez this week, which may end his under-appreciated career. The point here is that with the lack of offense The Mets provide and DeGrom pitching the best in his career, the first five under is now 8-2 in Degrom’s last 10 stars. Put it on auto-back.

Seriously though…

A jack of all trades, Christian got his start in the gambling industry using a model to predict players performance in daily fantasy sports. Eventually, he used that same model to cross over into NFL handicapping, specifically the prop market and honed his craft enough to cross over from player projections into every aspect of sports Handicapping. He then made the full time move to Las Vegas to become a professional sports handicapper, utilizing his knowledge of all sports including NFL, NCAA, NBA, UFC, and MLB. He's currently the resident #DFS expert on The Sports Gambling Podcast as well as managing editor.

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