The argument is simple. Oftentimes, in major-league games, the final three outs are not the most important. Win probability and leverage index tell us that there is usually a spot earlier in the game, potentially around the sixth or seventh inning, where the use of a team’s best reliever is advantageous. And, for the vast majority of Major League Baseball teams — except for the Indians — the team’s best relief pitcher is in fact their closer.
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