Another April, another Opening Day of closing drama: There is a reason fantasy analysts tell you to avoid putting your Easter eggs in the closers basket, particularly the shaky, breaky ones.
Ryan Madson, snap. Joakim Soria, getting cut. Andrew Bailey out at least through the All-Star break. Drew Storen and Kyle Farnsworth, shelved until late April.
Jose Valverde at least took the mound Thursday, with a fresh new dance. Too bad he went from the perfect 49-for-49 in 2011 save opportunities to 0-for-1 in 2012 -- regardless if he picked up a relief victory.
Once again, we have the annual mess at the closer position in fantasy that spring training never seems to clean up. We will try to do it for you here in the first Pitching Report of the season, outlining which tenuous closer situations you might want to watch for some potential saves down the road.
We will need a week-plus to get a real good sense of the rotations, so this report will go in-depth on the season-opening situations in the back-end of bullpens:
If you're still searching for saves, you probably have the best chance of picking up a dark horse candidate among these teams right now. We have an idea who their closer is, perhaps, but we really don't know how long that might last:
These teams have closers right now, but they probably have the wrong one. In the event the chosen one struggles early, you will want to have these backups stashed away. The replacements have the potential to be real good for us in fantasy:
These closers have jobs given to them, but they aren't great fantasy options right now and might give way to someone ... if there was someone really intriguing to go to:
Half of the league looks pretty set in stone with their closers, but we will evaluate these teams just in case the go-to guy gets injured, needs a temporary breather or mysteriously implodes for an extended period of time -- which is never out of the question at this position in fantasy. The rankings below are not related to their fantasy value but their actual job security: