The last quarter-century has been somewhat shaky when it comes to the Chicago Cubs and the closer role. Here are some of the best who’ve held the role.
The ninth inning has been a question mark quite a bit for the Chicago Cubs during my lifetime. I know I’m weeks from turning 29 and the team’s history spans far beyond then, but it’s what I know as a fan and as a writer, so bear with me here.
Of course, without Theo Epstein going out and making the midsummer trade to add Aroldis Chapman in 2016, there’s a good chance we’re still counting the years till the Lovable Losers finally win it all. But he did, we’re not and all is well – at least in that regard.
Despite his place in history, I don’t consider Chapman to be one of the top five closers the Cubs have had in the last 25 years. Maybe an honorable mention nod for his dominance and place in history, but I’m looking for more than just a half-season of lights-out pitching, as impressive as it was.
This isn’t exactly a ranking – but rather a collection of some of the guys who’ve handled ninth-inning duties in the last quarter-century. (For those of you at home, we’re going from 1996 on, which is why Randy Myers‘ name doesn’t appear on this list). Some names may surprise you, but likely you’ve heard of all these guys at one point or another.