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Fantasy baseball, just like real baseball, is obsessed with the save. Can't get enough of them. This list reflects that infatuation. How else to explain the inclusion of Todd Coffey? Later this preseason, I'll take a look at some potential bargain relievers who can help in wins, strikeouts, ERA and WHIP. You won't find many bargains here - the best closers don't often come at a discount, and even the worst tend to be overvalued. That said, a breakout year by a closer (Derrick Turnbow, anyone?) can make your season. Here's an early look at the best at the back end of the bullpen for 2006:

1. Mariano Rivera, Yankees

2005 stats: 7-4, 43 SV, 80 K, 1.38 ERA, 0.87 WHIP

Outlook: Still crazy good after all these years. He'll get plenty of save opportunities.

2. Francisco Rodriguez, Angels

2005 stats: 2-5, 45 SV, 91 K, 2.67 ERA, 1.14 WHIP

Outlook: A funky delivery and a nasty slider make him nearly unhittable; will be better than he was in '05.

3. Brad Lidge, Astros

2005 stats: 4-4, 42 SV, 103 K, 2.29 ERA, 1.15 WHIP

Outlook: Don't sweat the postseason blips - he's an elite option and pitches for a club that plays lots of nailbiters.

4. Joe Nathan, Twins

2005 stats: 7-4, 43 SV, 94 K, 2.70 ERA, 0.91 WHIP

Outlook: Not your average Joe. Numbers say he's every bit as good as Rivera, Rodriguez or Lidge.

5. Billy Wagner, Mets

2005 stats: 4-3, 38 SV, 87 K, 1.51 ERA, 0.84 WHIP

Outlook: Gets a new home, but count on the same microscopic WHIP.

6. Huston Street, A's

2005 stats: 5-1, 23 SV, 72 K, 1.72 ERA, 1.01 WHIP

Outlook: Expect an impressive second act from the AL Rookie of the Year.

7. B.J. Ryan, Blue Jays

2005 stats: 1-4, 36 SV, 100 K, 2.43 ERA, 1.14 WHIP

Outlook: Ready to take the next step; O's fans will lament losing this imposing lefty.

8. Chad Cordero, Nationals

2005 stats: 2-4, 47 SV, 61 K, 1.82 ERA, 0.97 WHIP

Outlook: K rate dropped off in '05. Don’t pay for last year's stats - he won't do it again.

9. Jason Isringhausen, Cardinals

2005 stats: 1-2, 39 SV, 51 K, 2.14 ERA, 1.19 WHIP

Outlook: Nothing spectacular, but Izzy gets the job done.

10. Francisco Cordero, Rangers

2005 stats: 3-1, 37 SV, 79 K, 3.39 ERA, 1.32 WHIP

Outlook: Heater makes him a K machine, but inflated WHIP keeps his value down.

11. Eric Gagne, Dodgers

2005 stats: 1-0, 8 SV, 22 K, 2.70, 0.97 WHIP

Outlook: Among the best when he's right, but his elbow remains a huge question mark.

12. Trevor Hoffman, Padres

2005 stats: 1-6, 43 SV, 54 K, 2.96 ERA, 1.11 WHIP

Outlook: Oldie but a goodie, Hoffman needs 42 saves to match Lee Smith's all-time saves record.

13. Bobby Jenks, White Sox

2005 stats: 1-2, 19 SV, 48 K, 3.73 ERA, 1.32 WHIP

Outlook: Showed he can handle the pressure. Triple-digit fastball doesn't hurt, either.

14. Armando Benitez, Giants

2005 stats: 2-3, 19 SV, 23 K, 4.50 ERA, 1.37 WHIP

Outlook: Word is he's dropped some weight after hamstring woes hamstrung him in '05.

15. Derrick Turnbow, Brewers

2005 stats: 7-1, 39 SV, 64 K, 1.74 ERA, 1.08 WHIP

Outlook: A feel-good story in '05, but numbers indicate he's more than a one-year wonder.

16. Eddie Guardado, Mariners

2005 stats: 2-3, 36 SV, 48 K, 2.72 ERA, 1.19 WHIP

Outlook: Among the most dependable closers in the game, but cumulative workload makes him an injury risk.

17. Bob Wickman, Indians

2005 stats: 0-4, 45 SV, 41 K, 2.47 ERA, 1.26 WHIP

Outlook: Sinkerballer's lack of Ks suggest '05 was an aberration.

18. Jose Valverde, Diamondbacks

2005 stats: 3-4, 15 SV, 75 K, 2.44 ERA, 1.07 WHIP

Outlook: Love those strikeout stats (75 Ks in 66 1/3 IP); a potential bargain on draft day.

19. Tom Gordon, Phillies

2005 stats: 5-4, 2 SV, 69 K, 2.57 ERA, 1.09 WHIP

Outlook: Back in the save saddle again, but declining Ks are a concern.

20. Brian Fuentes, Rockies

2005 stats: 2-5, 31 SV, 91 K, 2.91 ERA, 1.25 WHIP

Outlook: Forget the Coors effect; Fuentes strikes out better than a batter per inning. That's good enough for me.

21. Todd Jones, Tigers

2005 stats: 1-5, 40 SV, 62 K, 2.10 ERA, 1.03 WHIP

Outlook: An inspiration to mustachioed middle-aged men everywhere.

22. Ryan Dempster, Cubs

2005 stats: 5-3, 33 SV, 89 K, 3.13 ERA, 1.43 WHIP

Outlook: Track record as a below average starter makes me wary; so does that un-closer-like WHIP.

23. Mike Gonzalez, Pirates

2005 stats: 1-3, 3 SV, 58 K, 2.70 ERA, 1.32 WHIP

Outlook: Not overpowering, but can he be any worse than Jose Mesa?

24. Keith Foulke, Red Sox

2005 stats: 5-5, 15 SV, 34 K, 5.91 ERA, 1.55 WHIP

Outlook: Hard to imagine him getting back to elite status after surgery on both knees.

25. Chris Ray, Orioles

2005 stats: 1-3, 0 SV, 43 K, 2.65 ERA, 1.28 WHIP

Outlook: Haven't seen anything to indicate he can't handle the closer's role.

26. Mike MacDougal, Royals

2005 stats: 5-6, 21 SV, 72 K, 3.33 ERA, 1.32 WHIP

Outlook: A below average closer for a below average team. Pick at your own risk.

27. Scot Shields, Angels

2005 stats: 10-11, 7 SV, 98 K, 2.75 ERA, 1.12 WHIP

Outlook: Durable and dominant in the set-up role. If nothing else, he'll give you a nice boost in Ks, WHIP.

28. Chris Reitsma, Braves

2005 stats: 3-6, 15 SV, 42 K, 3.93 ERA, 1.27 WHIP

Outlook: Only desperate owners need apply. The Braves would prefer Reitsma in a set-up role and could opt for a committee.

29. Scott Linebrink, Padres

2005 stats: 8-1, 1 SV, 70 K, 1.83 ERA, 1.06 WHIP

Outlook: Similar to Shields, minus a few Ks; ready to step in when Hoffman's arm, inevitably, falls off.

30. Justin Duchscherer, A's

2005 stats: 7-4, 5 SV, 85 K, 2.21 ERA, 1.00 WHIP

Outlook: A little Street insurance who won't hurt you in any category, even if you can't pronounce his name.

31. Juan Rincon, Twins

2005 stats: 6-6, 0 SV, 84 K, 2.45 ERA, 1.21 WHIP

Outlook: One of the best set-up men in the game; has great K potential.

32. Joe Borowski, Marlins

2005 stats: 1-5, 0 SV, 27 K, 4.47 ERA, 1.08 WHIP

Outlook: A Todd Jones clone? Perhaps. But he's only a temporary solution in Florida, and a poor one at that.

33. Danys Baez, Dodgers

2005 stats: 5-4, 41 SV, 51 K, 2.86 ERA, 1.33 WHIP

Outlook: Wasn't ideal for the closer's role, but fits in nicely as a set-up man and/or insurance for Gagne.

34. Chad Orvella, Devil Rays

2005 stats: 3-3, 1 SV, 43 K, 3.60 ERA, 1.40 WHIP

Outlook: The best bet to emerge from the group vying to replace Baez. Move him up if he locks up the job.

35. Todd Coffey, Reds

2005 stats: 4-1, 1 SV, 26 K, 4.50 ERA, 1.64 WHIP

Outlook: His numbers scream Triple-A. In Cincinnati, apparently, that makes you the leading closer candidate.

36. Travis Bowyer, Marlins

2005 stats: 0-1, 0 SV, 12 K, 5.59 ERA, 1.34 WHIP

Outlook: A nice power pitcher, but don't buy into the sleeper hype; the Marlins might not have 20 save situations all season. Will compete with Borowski for the job.

37. David Weathers, Reds

2005 stats: 7-4, 15 SV, 61 K, 3.94 ERA, 1.29 WHIP

Outlook: As good a saves candidate as any in what could turn into a committee situation.

38. Mike Timlin, Red Sox

2005 stats: 7-3, 13 SV, 59 K, 2.24 ERA, 1.32 WHIP

Outlook: A solid fallback option for the Sox if Foulke doesn't return to form.

39. LaTroy Hawkins, Orioles

2005 stats: 2-8, 6 SV, 43 K, 3.83 ERA, 1.46 WHIP

Outlook: For all you Ray haters. That WHIP is worrisome, but he held it under 1.10 for three seasons from 2002-'04.

40. Joey Devine, Braves

2005 stats: 0-1, 0 SV, 3 K, 12.60 ERA, 2.20 WHIP

Outlook: The 2005 first-round pick needs more seasoning, but there's no way Reitsma finishes the season as the Braves closer.

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