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Relief Efforts: Don't look for patterns in save chances

Updated: May 28, 2008, 4:12 PM ET
By Eric Karabell | ESPN.com

There is just no way to predict how many saves a pitcher will accrue in a given season. You can study all kinds of metrics and research past performance, and still it won't help. Saves can be consistent or streaky, from year to year, month to month, even week to week.

With the closers on the best teams, their teammates tend to score a ton and win games 8-3. See Mariano Rivera earning "only" 30 saves last season or Jonathan Papelbon falling short of 40. You definitely don't want the closers ...

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