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Must-click link: Other teams’ closers in the Mariano Rivera era

Mar 30, 2011, 3:19 PM EST

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Mariano Rivera is entering his 15th season as the Yankees’ closer and the Washington Post has a very cool graphic showing how many closers the other 29 teams have each used during that reign, along with their respective save percentages.

Washington Post: There’s Mariano … and everyone else

I won’t ruin it for you, because the graphic is really worth checking out, but every other team has had at least three different pitchers lead them in saves during that time and several teams have gone through double-digit closers.

  1. easports82 - Mar 30, 2011 at 3:31 PM

    Pretty cool graphic. Gagne being the only closer with more than 95% of the saves over his reign is impressive.

  2. minnesconsin - Mar 30, 2011 at 4:12 PM

    I forget how dominant Gagne was for those couple of years. Seems crazy he could fall so far but I’m sure it’s more common than I realize.

    Don’t think he’ll be back to form this year either, but that graphic also says something about Joe Nathan

  3. bigd9484 - Mar 30, 2011 at 4:32 PM

    I’m not so sure it’s common. Going from average or adequate to useless, I completely agree, but to come out of nowhere, be dominant for three years, getting 45+ saves each year, then so quickly going the other way and not being able to keep guys off base is not so common.

  4. rexryanisablowhard - Mar 30, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    I’m no math major, and by math neither our these WP writers. MO has saved 559 games in 608 career opportunities, which comes out to 92%.

    • Aaron Gleeman - Mar 30, 2011 at 4:56 PM

      Not sure where you’re getting those numbers, but they’re incorrect.

      Rivera has 559 saves in 626 opportunities, which is 89.3%.

      http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/r/riverma01-pitch.shtml

      • Gobias Industries - Mar 30, 2011 at 5:03 PM

        But your math – at least using the incorrect numbers – is right. So you got that going for you.

      • rexryanisablowhard - Mar 30, 2011 at 5:08 PM

        I was looking at MLB.com, saves versus save opportunities. You’d think MLB would get their own stats correct, no? I see nowhere on your link that even lists Blown Saves!

        http://mlb.mlb.com/team/player.jsp?player_id=121250#sectionType=career&statType=2&season=&gameType='R

  5. Aaron Gleeman - Mar 30, 2011 at 5:12 PM

    MLB.com’s stats page shows Rivera going 5-for-5 in 1996, 43-for-43 in 1997, and 36-for-36 in 1998. I assure you he didn’t begin his career by saving 84 straight games without a blown save.

    • phukyouk - Mar 30, 2011 at 9:41 PM

      i choose to believe otherwise.

  6. rexryanisablowhard - Mar 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

    Fair enough, if the data is wrong, then I am wrong. Thanks for the correctiom.

  7. txnative61 - Apr 2, 2011 at 5:54 AM

    The big surprise for me in this graphic was how well Jose Mesa did with the Phillies. Watching him with the Mariners was like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

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