MLB The Best Closers in Baseball History  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Top relief closing pitchers / CLs ever in the MLB

Who are the best closers in baseball history? The players on this list shut down late innings with both class and style. Many of them are/were considered the best in the bullpen -- and among the greatest baseball players of all time, for that matter. Some are still playing, but others have officially retired from Major League Baseball. Enjoy this list of the top closing pitchers, vote for the closers you think are the greatest to ever hit the mound, and feel free to re-rank this list in any order you see fit. The best relief pitchers ever in baseball have one thing in common: They get the job done. When a closer takes the mound, it's crunch time. Often, the closer has the awesome responsibility of helping his team hold a narrow lead. One run could change the outcome, and the relief pitcher has to make sure no one hits him. There is a reason why closers are the highest paid relief players on the team, after all. Looking for more great baseball-related lists? Cast your votes for the top current baseball players, the greatest designated hitters of all time and the best hitters in baseball history.
list ordered by

1
859 151
Mariano Rivera is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Mariano Rivera Relief pitcher, Pitcher

2
328 126
Rollie Fingers is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Rollie Fingers Pitcher

3
412 135
Dennis Eckersley is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History

4
355 119
Trevor Hoffman is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Trevor Hoffman Relief pitcher, Pitcher

5
315 95
Goose Gossage is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Goose Gossage Pitcher

6
243 101
Bruce Sutter is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Bruce Sutter Pitcher

7
198 117
Billy Wagner is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Billy Wagner Relief pitcher, Pitcher

8
221 112
Lee Smith is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Lee Smith Relief pitcher, Pitcher

9
155 120
John Franco is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
John Franco Relief pitcher, Pitcher

10
272 83
John Smoltz is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
peis added John Smoltz Starting pitcher, Pitcher

11
172 84
Dan Quisenberry is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Dan Quisenberry Relief pitcher, Pitcher

12
116 109
John Wetteland is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
John Wetteland Relief pitcher, Pitcher

13
125 98
Hoyt Wilhelm is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Hoyt Wilhelm Pitcher

14
100 80
Jeff Reardon is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Jeff Reardon Relief pitcher, Pitcher

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15
182 86
Craig Kimbrel is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Craig Kimbrel Relief pitcher, Pitcher

16
106 107
Troy Percival is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Troy Percival Relief pitcher, Pitcher

17
121 101
Francisco Rodríguez is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History

18
112 72
Dave Righetti is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Dave Righetti Relief pitcher, Pitcher

19
91 48
Tug McGraw is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
AriBenarroch added Tug McGraw Relief pitcher, Pitcher

20
103 87
Joe Nathan is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
dca1983 added Joe Nathan Relief pitcher, Setup pitcher, Pitcher

21
77 93
Robb Nen is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Robb Nen Pitcher

The Greatest Baseball Players of All Time

22
71 32
Kent Tekulve is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
chile6880 added Kent Tekulve Relief pitcher, Pitcher

23
126 46
Aroldis Chapman is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Paul Nyhart added Aroldis Chapman Relief pitcher, Pitcher

24
112 72
Sparky Lyle is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Sparky Lyle Relief pitcher, Pitcher

25
66 76
Rod Beck is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Rod Beck Pitcher

26
56 32
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buskieboy added Tom Henke Relief pitcher, Pitcher

27
115 97
Éric Gagné is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Éric Gagné Relief pitcher, Pitcher

28
60 76
Randy Myers is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Randy Myers Relief pitcher, Pitcher

The Greatest Catchers of All Time

29
73 95
Brian Wilson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Brian Wilson Relief pitcher

30
35 8
Kenley Jansen is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Kenley Jansen Catcher, Pitcher

31
99 109
Jonathan Papelbon is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Videoport Jones added Jonathan Papelbon Pitcher

32
41 28
Al Hrabosky is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
slaft added Al Hrabosky Pitcher

33
28 19
Jesse Orosco is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
lavj81 added Jesse Orosco Pitcher

34
71 69
Willie Hernández is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
peis added Willie Hernández Pitcher

35
51 91
Jason Isringhausen is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Jason Isringhausen Relief pitcher, Pitcher

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36
22 32
Greg Minton is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
mksyko added Greg Minton Pitcher - 140 Career save, 3.10 career ERA in an era where relief pitchers pitched more than 1 inning for a save

37
28 27
Steve Bedrosian is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
chile6880 added Steve Bedrosian Pitcher

38
70 59
Bobby Thigpen is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Bobby Thigpen Pitcher

39
15 24
Woodie Fryman is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
rouj79 added Woodie Fryman Pitcher

40
37 34
Brad Lidge is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
chile6880 added Brad Lidge Pitcher

41
61 80
Mitch Williams is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Mitch Williams Pitcher

42
35 90
Francisco Cordero is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Francisco Cordero Relief pitcher, Pitcher

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43
14 27
Jeff Shaw is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
slaft added Jeff Shaw Relief pitcher, Pitcher

44
45 47
Mike Marshall is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Mike Marshall Pitcher

45
25 40
José Valverde is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
slaft added José Valverde Relief pitcher, Closer, Pitcher

46
41 49
Rick Aguilera is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Rick Aguilera Pitcher

47
21 29
John Axford is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
ebelkids added John Axford Pitcher

48
21 33
Rafael Soriano is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
slaft added Rafael Soriano Relief pitcher, Pitcher

49
29 83
Heath Bell is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
Heath Bell Relief pitcher, Pitcher

50
10 20
Ervin Santana is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Closers in Baseball History
-1456082551498 added Ervin Santana Starting pitcher, Pitcher