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Projected Top 5 Save Leaders In The American And National League For MLB 2016

Craig Kimbrel is still about as filthy as they come in nailing down games in the Majors. With 225 Saves and a 1.63 ERA in the last 5 years of his career, this 27 year old flamethrower brings his talents to Beantown and a top rated club. Last year was the 1st season he didn't lead the National League after four consecutive years of leading the Senior Circuit. He still managed 39 Saves for a 74 win San Diego team. Since the Red Sox are going to be somewhere in the 90 win range, Kimbrel should at least be in the mid 40's in Saves again for 2016.

Craig Kimbrel is still about as filthy as they come in nailing down games in the Majors. With 225 Saves and a 1.63 ERA in the last 5 years of his career, this 27 year old flamethrower brings his talents to Beantown and a top rated club. Last year was the 1st season he didn’t lead the National League after four consecutive years of leading the Senior Circuit. He still managed 39 Saves for a 74 win San Diego team. Since the Red Sox are going to be somewhere in the 90 win range, Kimbrel should at least be in the mid 40’s in Saves again for 2016.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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Figuring out the Saves Leaders for the 2016 year is a lot easier to project than the Holds Leaders we did last week.  Perhaps the easiest to discern is also the National League.

Since I projected 7 teams will win 90+ games in the Senior Circuit I have listed 5 teams with their Closer out of the fold there.  I did however, leave out Hector Rondon and Mark Melancon.

I feel the Bucs may trade Melancon despite being in a position to make the playoffs.   I also think the Cubs will blow out a ton of clubs this season in games, and therefore not need Rondon to lockdown a 3 run or under lead.

This is the same reason why I won’t label Roberto Osuna for the top 5 in the American League either.  It is also not unfathomable to see the Jays go with Drew Storen to close down games.

I fully think that Craig Kimbrel will lead the entire Major Leagues for the Boston Red Sox as their Closer.

I may have gone with Aroldis Chapman on the list as well, however his pending suspension for his domestic violence call in should see him riding pine for at least 25 games.  The New York Yankees should still lead the Junior Circuit for total team Saves.
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Top 5 Projected MLB Holds Leaders (AL + NL) In 2016

With so much uncertainty in the air about Mark Melancon's fate with the club, I can't pick Tony Watson to win this category for a 2nd straight year. He was also the runner up in the 2014 season. I say he is the Closer in the 2nd half of the year. His teammate Jared Hughes will get plenty of opportunities all year in late inning relief.

With so much uncertainty in the air about Mark Melancon’s fate with the club, I can’t pick Tony Watson to win this category for a 2nd straight year. He was also the runner-up in the 2014 season. I say he is the Closer in the 2nd half of the year. His teammate Jared Hughes will get plenty of opportunities all year in late inning relief.

Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer) 

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It is time to get our fantasy teams ready in 2016.  Because of the long winter year for certain players, the Relievers market has a pile of roster moves to go down before opening weekend in April.  There are some guys that could make the list, but I am itching to write my list.

For the reasons I was just talking about, Jeremy Affeldt, Matt Thornton, Casey Janssen, Manny Parra, Eric O’Flaherty, Tommy Hunter, Franklin Morales, Neal Cotts, Nathan Adcock, Wesley Wright, Matt Capps, Sergio Santos, Ryan Webb and Joe Beimel won’t appear – although only a couple of those guys are even relevant to the Holds stat.

The biggest questions to think of include trade possibilities.  Will the Pirates trade Mark Melancon?  If this happens, NL Leader of Holds last year, Tony Watson, may see some time as the Closer for the Bucs. Read the rest of this entry

Milwaukee Brewers State Of The Union For 2016

New Milwaukee GM David Kearns has his hands full trying to compete in the NL Central for the next several seasons. Really the club should be starting a full scale rebuild that includes trading Ryan Braun. Jonathan Lucroy and potentially Wily Peralta. With dealing with the Cubs, Cards and Bucs all in the NL Central, expect a 100 loss season coming forth for the club.

New Milwaukee GM David Stearns has his hands full trying to compete in the NL Central for the next several seasons. Really the club should be starting a full scale rebuild that includes trading Ryan Braun. Jonathan Lucroy and potentially Wily Peralta. With dealing with the Cubs, Cards and Bucs all in the NL Central, expect a 100 loss season coming forth for the club.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

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The Milwaukee Brewers owner just sent out an open letter to all of the fans explaining to them his gratitude, and promised that the organization is committed to winning long term.  I liked his candor, but it will be some time before this team has many victory laps.

The NL Central has turned into a fierce 3 club race, with the Reds and Brewers being left in the dust.  Cincinnati has already thrown the white flag this week in trading Todd Frazier and now potentially Brandon Phillips.  They would have already traded Aroldis Chapman as well if it weren’t for a domestic dispute.

The time to rebuild for the club is now.  I would think the club should also entertain trade talks with Ryan Braun and Jonathon Lucroy over the next 6 – 8 months. Read the rest of this entry

Detroit Tigers Payroll In 2016 + Contracts Going Forward

Detroit is rapidly aging with their core and they have added even more guys to the fold over this winter with Jordan Zimmermann and Francisco Rodriguez both 30 or over. This club may have opened up another 1 - 2 year winning window here - but will pay a steep financial price for it. The club is around $175 MIL already for total team salary and are right near the MLB Luxury Tax Threshold of $189 MIL.

Detroit is rapidly aging with their core and they have added even more guys to the fold over this winter with Jordan Zimmermann and Francisco Rodriguez both 30 or over. This club may have opened up another 1 – 2 year winning window here – but will pay a steep financial price for it. The club is around $175 MIL already for total team salary and are right near the MLB Luxury Tax Threshold of $189 MIL.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

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The Tigers are on the cusp of chasing that $189 MIL Luxury Tax Threshold they way they are spending money freely.  They have 3 of the top 15 contracts in MLB history – with  Jordan Zimmermann just outside the bar with his new 5 YRs/$110 MIL deal.

It has been a decade worth of competitive baseball – with the outlier being the last season where they finished under .500.

Detroit should be right around $171 MIL after the Arbitration contracts are finished this winter.  This must be where the budget ends for the franchise.

The Tigers are still paying Prince Fielder $30 MIL over the next 6 years – spread out evenly, and this year they have the pleasure of kicking Joe Nathan another $1 MIL not to play for them.

Miguel Cabrera and Justin Verlander both earn $28 MIL in the upcoming season – while Victor Martinez and Jordan Zimmermann both will make $18 MIL each.  Ian Kinsler and Anibal Sanchez round out the 8 figure players.

The Motown Boys also facilitated trades to bring in OF Cameron Maybin and Closer Francisco Rodriguez that will add some money to the bottom line in 2016.

Cabrera is just starting his huge 8 Years/$248 MIL pact – while Justin Verlander still has 4 years and a total of $112 MIL left on the books.

If all of the options are picked up on this team, the whole Roster could be back for the 2017 as well.  This may be a good or bad thing. (more…)

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