Mariano, Hoffman and everyone else
MLB.com had me research an interesting topic for our Lee Smith rollout package — of today’s crop of closers, which might be Hall of Fame worthy? The answer is pretty much exactly what you’d expect, with Mariano Rivera a virtual lock and Trevor Hoffman not far behind.
But really, no other long-time closers jump out at you. That just goes to prove how difficult it is to remain durable and dominant in that role for so long, especially now that the game has changed since the 1980s and closers aren’t asked to be firemen in the Goose Gossage mold.
“That would be a special treat,” Rivera told the New York Daily
News last year. “To be able to have the opportunity to be part of the
Hall of Fame is the cream of the cream, the pinnacle, the top. That’s what every player wishes for. We have the opportunity to one
day be part of that with the five closers already there. That’s a
Rivera and Hoffman represent the best of the ‘new breed,’ and with more than 1,000 saves combined between them, forecasting them for Cooperstown was easy. After that, the crystal ball gets hazy. Do you think there are any other closers out there who could be Hall-worthy?