Who Should You Bet on to Record the Most Saves This Season?

Skyler Carlin
Skyler Carlin@skyler_carlin

With spring training beginning, it's a great time to look at futures markets via the MLB odds at FanDuel Sportsbook.

In this piece, we'll break down the market for who will lead the majors in saves. Emmanuel Clase of the Cleveland Guardians has led the MLB in saves in each of the last two seasons, registering 44 and 42 saves in his last two campaigns.

Let's check out the MLB saves leader odds that are available at FanDuel Sportsbook, and I'll dish out my favorite pitchers to bet on.

MLB Saves Leader Odds

Here are the players with the 15 shortest odds to have the most regular-season saves in 2024.

Saves Leader Odds
Josh Hader+550
Emmanuel Clase+600
Camilo Doval+800
Edwin Diaz+800
David Bednar+1300
Paul Sewald+1300
Clay Holmes+1300
View Full Table

Emmanuel Clase, Guardians (+600)

Even though plenty of people will be clamoring to wager on Josh Hader after he signed with the Houston Astros, why not bet on the closer who has led the majors in saves for two straight years? Clase has been the go-to closer for the Guardians in the last three seasons, and he's notched 44-plus saves in each of his last two campaigns.

Despite leading the league in saves in 2023, Clase recorded career-worst marks in ERA (3.22) and strikeout rate (21.2%). When diving into Clase's numbers from last year, it's clear that the hard-throwing righty struggled against right-handed batters.

The 25-year-old closer posted a 27.8% strikeout rate versus lefties compared to a 14.6% strikeout rate against righties last season, but he struck out right-handed hitters at a 27.3% clip in 2022. Taking that into account, there's a good chance we see Clase perform better against right-handed batters in 2024 to even out his numbers.

Amid his noticeable splits, Clase still managed to limit righties to a weighted on-base average (wOBA) of .256 and a solid WHIP of 1.04. Considering that Clase could see an uptick in strikeout rate and owns a consistent closer role, he could be the first closer since Firpo Marberry (1924 to 1926) to lead baseball in saves in three consecutive seasons.

Camilo Doval, Giants (+800)

After a formidable 2022 campaign for Camilo Doval, we witnessed a true breakout season in 2023 from the electric closer for the San Francisco Giants. Doval went from logging a 28.0% strikeout rate, 1.24 WHIP, and 27 saves in 2022 to a 31.0% strikeout rate, 1.14 WHIP, and 39 saves in 2023 -- tying David Bednar for the most saves in the National League.

The 26-year-old closer relies on three pitches in his repertoire: a cutter, a sinker, and a slider. Doval threw his three pitches pretty evenly last season, tossing his slider at a 36.2% rate, his cutter at a 33.7% rate, and his sinker at a 30.1% rate.

His success a season ago could be partly attributed to the increased usage of his sinker -- from a 25.8% rate in 2022 to 30.1% in 2023 -- and the increased velocities of his cutter and slider. The velocity of his cutter went from 99.3 MPH in 2022 to 99.8 MPH in 2023, and his slider went from 87.6 MPH in 2022 to 88.9 MPH in 2023.

Besides Doval being a strikeout artist on the mound, he benefits from playing in a pitcher-friendly home stadium at Oracle Park. Following a year where he finished with the most saves in the National League, Doval is undoubtedly a contender to lead the entire majors in saves in 2024.

Edwin Diaz, Mets (+800)

During the World Baseball Classic last year, Edwin Diaz suffered an unfortunate knee injury, and he was forced to miss the entire 2023 season for the New York Mets. The injury came right after Diaz dominated the league to the tune of a 1.31 earned run average (ERA), 50.2% strikeout rate, 0.84 WHIP, wOBA allowed of .205, and 32 saves in 2022.

While the knee injury is still a reason for pause for 2024, at least Diaz isn't recovering from an ailment that affected his arm. The Mets are understandably going to be cautious with Diaz throughout spring training, but there is no reason to believe he'll handle a limited workload as the closer once the regular season begins.

Diaz led the entire league in saves in 2018 when he was with the Seattle Mariners, tallying an eye-popping 57 saves. Since beginning his career in the majors in 2016, Diaz has never recorded a strikeout rate lower than 32.0%, and he's had four seasons where he's been credited with 32-plus saves.

Staying healthy is the primary focus for Diaz following his season-ending ailment. Assuming he can avoid another injury, the experienced closer could be right back in the discussion of pitchers who could amass the most saves in the upcoming season.

Longshot Pick: Jordan Romano, Blue Jays (+2300)

The one player who made it into this article despite never leading his respective league in saves in a season is Jordan Romano of the Toronto Blue Jays. At the same time, Romano is the only other pitcher in this article -- besides Clase -- to finish in the MLB's top five in saves in each of the last two seasons.

Since becoming the full-time closer for the Blue Jays in 2021, Romano has been credited with 23-plus saves in each season, including 36 saves in each of the last two years. The 30-year-old veteran has also posted at least a 2.14 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 29.0% strikeout rate, and .257 wOBA allowed in two of his last three years on the bump.

Just last season, Romano logged his worst ERA (2.90), WHIP (1.22), and wOBA (.281) as the closer in Toronto. Upon looking at his metrics from 2023, Romano surrendered his highest launch angle (16.6 degrees) and expected slugging percentage (.352), which led to a career-worst fly ball rate (45.3%).

Save opportunities should be there again for Romano in 2024 as the Blue Jays don't have anyone who should be splitting time with him in the closer role. If Romano can continue to strike out batters at a decent clip while also lowering the number of fly balls he gives up, he could reach 40-plus saves.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.