War Criminals: Closers

August 15, 2006 | Comments (0) | by Governor X

Let me put it simply, if you’re a “closer” and your name isn’t Mariano Rivera or Trevor Hoffman, you are a thief. Not just a petty crook who robs the 7-11, but a major movie level thief that would make Bonnie and Clyde look like a couple college kids stealing forks from Denny’s.

Closer is the most overrated and interchangeable position in baseball. I hate it. It’s a bogus position made up to rack up bogus stats. In the last 10-15 years we have seen the explosion of this position and an explosion in their salaries.

Few closers have ever had any staying power. Most come out of nowhere, save 40 games or so, sign a fat contract, and then implode. Its these contracts that make them war criminals.

Look at the salaries of some MLB closers that have lost their jobs, (either by blowing goats or going on the DL) or are just not earning their keep and their respective salaries:

Eric Gagne (Dodgers) - $10,000,000
Keith Foulke (Red Sox) - $7,750,000
Eddie Guardado (Mariners/Reds) - $6,250,000
Troy Percival (Tigers) - $6,000,000
Francisco Cordero (Rangers/Brewers) - $4,125,000
Danys Baez (Dodgers/Braves) - $4,000,000
Brad Lidge (Astros) - $3,975,000
Chris Reitsma (Braves) - $2,250,000

I could go on and on. Just look at those numbers for a minute. Millions and millions of dollars for either doing absolutely nothing or doing your job so poorly you’ve lost it or should lose it (*cough* Brad Lidge *cough*). This money is stolen - give it back you assholes.

MLB owners are dumb, but not so dumb that this will go on forever. Sooner or later they’ll realize you don’t need to pay a Keith Foulke millions when you can just pick a guy like Papelbon out of a hat and insert him at closer (considering the Red Sox wheel-o-closers in the last few years, they should know this by now).

So Mr. Papelbon & Mr. Jenks…I know you’re thinking of signing a fat contract and then phoning it in for the rest of your careers, but be warned, we’re watching and I know a guy at Interpol (the police organization, not the monotone band).