My league counts traditional 5x5 league categories plus OBP, Total Bases, and Save Percentage, with the pitching categories being worth 1.25 points each. Hitting worth 1 point each. With the extra pitching category only getting contributions from closers, is Gagne an easy second round pick or should I just go all offense due to the 7 total offensive categories?
Gagne is one of the few closers worth taking relatively early, but unless your points system heavily favors closers, 2nd round seems too early for him. Plus, he showed he was semi-human in the second half last year, which dampers his future value a bit.
I'd say mid-3rd at the earliest. The closer position is deep this year, IMO, with a number of young potential hotshots, guys in their prime, and seasoned veterans all likely to post very solid numbers next year. Personally, I'd let someone else grab Gagne that early and try to grab guys like Nathan, Rivera, and Wagner a few rounds later; guys like Dotel, Izzy, and Hoffmann a few rounds after that; and grab a few undervalued guys like Kolb in the later rounds.
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There will always be people who take Gagne as early as the second round (or even higher), but no closer is worth that much in my opinion. They simply don't pitch enough innings to have second round impact on your totals at the end of the year.
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Based on your league configuration, I say Gagne is definitely worth a second rounder.
Save percentage is a new one on me, but sounds like Gagne would be dominant in that. And the boost you give to pitching cats make it make even more sense.
Given his 50+ save, 130+ strikeout potential, plus his solid ratios and, most importantly, his consistency, he would be worth taking.
Yes, closers are a dime a dozen, but that is what make the dominant, dependable ones more worthwhile.
In your league, Gagne and a solid second closer can win you saves and save percentage, and he'll be in the top three or so in reliever strikeouts.
If you don't think 130 Ks from a closer is an important number, you aren't paying attention.
So, i'll be in the minority here and vote yes.
i took gagne with the last pick of the second round in a 12 team league, and i was very happy with that. it might have been the first pick of the 3rd (snake draft), but nonetheless i think he is worth the pick. he not only helps with saves, but his k's are good, and his whip is awesome too.
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