The Best Closers in the MWC
We all know the closers; Mariano Rivera, Brian Wilson, Eck, Fingers, Hoffman, Sutter, Romo, and the list goes on. Every team needs one but they are rarer than a good starter. That is also true in the college game. Closers are usually used only in situations where their team is leading three or less runs heading into the last inning. Why waste them in a blowout unless they need the work. Their job is to slam the door; nothing more and nothing less. Losses, blown saves, and wins are not good. A good ERA and tons of strikeouts are what you look for. I've set the stage.
The Mountain West has a good one that is the poster boy for this article. There are a few others who rate some ink (ink?) so I thought I'd bring them in too. I didn't include San Jose State's Kalei Contrades, as he's a good one, because his team has not been in the situation enough to warrant his use as a closer. Read on.
For a comparison Ian Hamilton of Washington State has 10 saves. Sam Moore of UC Irvine has 13. Eric Karch of Pepperdine has 9. Sutter McLoughlin of Sacramento State has 7. That covers the leaders in the other D1 conferences in the west.
Michael Cederoth - San Diego State 12 saves 3-1 and 2.60 27.2 IP 30 K 17 BB .167
Michael is one of the top arms in western college baseball. He was drafted in the 11th round out of high school so the scouts know all about him. Expect to see him go a little higher in June and also expect to see him gone as a result. He was also picked on some pre-season AA lists. He's playing up, that's for sure. His BA against is a very good .167.
Brayden Torres - UNLV 6 saves 1-1 and 1.77 20.1 IP 23 K 7 BB .239
This kid is only a sophomore and gets to finalize games that are started by a top notch crew of starting pitchers. How lucky can you get? He didn't get a lot of coverage in high school and has only this year burst on the scene. I'm sure scouts are drooling and will look at him with a lot more interest next year.
Adam Whitt - Nevada 6 saves 4-3 and 2.76 29.1 IP 33 K 9 BB .205
Another sophomore that is doing well. He has a great BA against of .205 and has 33 strikeouts in 29 IP. He will also demand some more observation time next year.
Victor Sanchez - New Mexico 5 saves 2-0 and 1.16 23.1 IP 23 K 9 BB .127
Victor closes out this small post about closers but I might add that he is one of three sophomores in this small and elite group. Batters hit a measly .127 against him so far which leads all of the closers. All of these guys can strike people out and that's expected of the position. A shut-down stake in the heart kind of guy.