2021 MLB Season: The Closer Entrance Song Report

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Last year, I began a tradition where I rank the best closer entrance songs in baseball. Heading into the 2021 MLB season, there have been a few shakeups around the league. Some of the players ranked last year are no longer slated for the closer role, while others have changed their entrance music. One big change from last year is that not every team had a closer named at the time of the rankings. This year, I have selected the most realistic option for each team to make sure that all 30 teams are represented.

Without further ado, I present the 2021 MLB season closer entrance songs, ranked.

2021 MLB Season: Closer Entrance Songs, Ranked

30. BAL: Cesar Valdez –– Adore You by Harry Styles

There’s a time and place for playing Harry Styles. Playing it as an entrance to you trying to lock down a victory isn’t one of them. With all due respect to Valdez, this has no other place than the bottom of this list.

29. CIN: Amir Garrett –– We Paid by Lil Baby

The Reds enter the 2021 MLB season with last year’s leader of this list, Sean Doolittle, but Garrett is slated to be the team’s closer this year. The aggressive rapping in this song makes this a reasonable choice, but the instrumental really doesn’t do anything for me. Still, Garrett’s choice is a huge step forward from Valdez’s.

28. PIT: Richard Rodriguez –– La Romana by Bad Bunny Feat. El Alfa

Heading into the 2021 MLB season, the Pirates are slated as the worst team in the majors. This is another list where they are ranked close to the bottom. Rodriguez’s choice is similar to Garrett’s, but the instrumental does more in my opinion. It still isn’t much for creating a game-like atmosphere though.

27. LAA: Raisel Iglesias –– Bendiciones by Bad Bunny

We have another Bad Bunny song here and again it just lacks a lot of energy. Iglesias gets a slight edge over Rodriguez since there are more drums and bass in this song. It’s still weak compared to most of the list though.

26. STL: Giovanny Gallegos –– El Indio Enamorado by Grupo Laberinto

We don’t know for sure if Gallegos will be the St. Louis closer for long, but heading into the 2021 MLB season, he is slated for that role. The trumpet really saves this song because other than that, it’s awfully similar to the previous few choices.

25. TB: Nick Anderson –– Stir Fry by Migos

This song has more energy to it than the ones ranked below it, but it’s still disappointing. If Anderson wanted to use a Migos song, there were plenty of better options on the table.

24. COL: Daniel Bard –– Alive by Pearl Jam

Not an awful selection by Bard, but similar to Anderson, he picked one of the weaker options from an artist. Many Pearl Jam songs could make for a solid entrance, but this one is about as average as it gets. Eddie Vedder’s voice just lacks the energy to put this song any higher.

23. SEA: Rafael Montero –– Travesuras by Nicky Jam

This is where the gap starts to get tighter between each song. Mariners fans are having a hard time processing that Rafael Montero is a closer entering the 2021 MLB season. This is a solid choice by Montero, it has a nice beat and enough energy to the point where it could fire up a stadium a little bit.

22. WAS: Brad Hand –– Paul Revere by Beastie Boys

The Beastie Boys have a ton of great options, but Hand misses the mark with this selection. You would think that after the intro, the song would pick up somehow, but the instrumental does not back up the lyrics nearly enough to put this any higher.

21. TEX: Jose LeClerc –– Con Poder by Barak

This song may be over seven minutes long, but it makes for a pretty good entrance. The drumming during the intro adds a ton of energy to the song. The only reason why I can’t rank it any higher is that the energy dies out around the 1:35 mark, which is too early in my opinion.

20. SD: Drew Pomeranz –– Baila Conmigo by Dayvi & Victor Cardenas (ft. Kelly Ruiz)

Pomeranz’s choice has a similar intro to LeClerc’s choice, but it begins with a trumpet and drums, which adds more energy in my opinion. This is another song that’s more of a dance song, but if a song can get a stadium grooving, that’s a good sign.

19. MIA: Anthony Bass –– Bidibodi Bidibu by Bubbles

Bass hasn’t chosen a song for the 2021 MLB season yet, but he used this song last year when he led the Blue Jays in saves. This song is by the Swedish techno group Bubbles, and while the lyrics are hard to decipher, it has a nice beat to it. I’m not sure how much this fires up a crowd, but I can see how this can get someone’s heart rate up before entering a game.

18. PHI: Archie Bradley –– Public Service Announcement by JAY-Z

This isn’t the best JAY-Z song, but it’s nice for an entrance. Other players such as Curtis Granderson have used this song for their walk-up song. I can see how this can make Bradley seem intimidating to opposing hitters.

17. SFG: Jake McGee –– Thunder by Imagine Dragons

Entering the 2021 MLB season, McGee’s bounce-back season seems to have earned him a closer gig. The word “thunder” alone can strike fear in people. The instrumental to this song may not seem intimidating, but the lyrics definitely give off a rebellious vibe. If there was more energy to the instrumental, this would definitely be inside the top 10. Overall though, this is a solid choice by the fastball artist.

16. HOU: Ryan Pressly –– Enemies by Shinedown

This is one of the angrier songs on the list thus far, but the guitars in this song supply most of the energy. Brent Smith’s voice doesn’t do much for me, but the electric guitar riffs do just enough to rank Pressly’s choice ahead of McGee. This isn’t a bad pick, but in this field, it’s middle-of-the-pack.

15. BOS: Matt Barnes –– Bigfoot by W&W

Barnes’ choice is almost entirely instrumental, but there’s tons of energy throughout. The drum and bass of this song are powerful enough to just edge out Pressly’s choice in my opinion. Again though, it just doesn’t quite do enough to be anywhere higher than 15.

14. MIN: Taylor Rogers –– The Chain by Fleetwood Mac

Rogers enters the 2021 MLB season with a new entrance song, and it’s a great choice. It may not be as explosive as Barnes’ choice, but you can’t go wrong with Fleetwood Mac. The chorus of this song has enough energy and intimidation to it, which puts Rogers just barely ahead of Barnes.

13. CHW: Liam Hendriks –– We Will Kill the Breath of Bangarang by Queen vs. RATM vs. Prodigy vs. Skrillex

I put this song in the middle of the pack last year, and it’s hard to put it any higher this year. It’s an incredible mash-up, but it’s kind of hard to follow. If Hendriks were to use just one of the songs from the mash-up, he’d likely be in the top five.

12. KC: Greg Holland –– Fade Away by Breaking Benjamin

Holland enters the 2021 MLB season in the same role he had when he helped the Royals reach the World Series in 2014. There’s a lot of great Breaking Benjamin options to choose from, and Holland’s choice is one of the best ones. The only aspect this song lacks is more intensity from the band during the verses. Overall though, this is a strong choice from Holland.

11. CHC: Craig Kimbrel –– Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns N’ Roses

Just missing out on the top 10, we have embattled fireballer Craig Kimbrel with a classic jam by Guns N’ Roses. Kimbrel enters the 2021 MLB season coming off two very rough seasons in a row, but he’s the Cubs’ closer for now. This isn’t the best Guns N’ Roses song, but the guitar solo in the intro is fantastic. Kimbrel has two songs he used to use though that both rank higher on this list.

10. DET: Bryan Garcia –– Sirius by The Alan Parsons Project

Kicking off the top 10, we have an instrumental that has been used across many sports as a pump-up song. It not only can be used as a good entrance song for a player, but it can also be used for when a team takes the field. Most sports fans recognize this as the song that played when the Chicago Bulls’ starting lineup was introduced at the United Center during their dominant run in the 1990s.

9. TOR: Kirby Yates –– Sad but True by Metallica

For the longest time, Yates warmed up to “Could You Be Loved” by Bob Marley, but he enters the 2021 MLB season with a much different song. Maybe this isn’t the best Metallica song, it’s still a Metallica song. Any of their songs can fire people up. It’s not “Enter Sandman“, but “Sad but True” is a fine entrance song.

8. ATL: Will Smith –– Stranglehold by Ted Nugent

Smith checks in here with the longest song on the list, but it’s still a strong choice. Nugent’s guitar riff is looped for the entire song and it provides a nice background for his intense vocals. A couple of other MLB players have used this song for their entrance –– most recently it was used by Craig Kimbrel and Jordan Hicks.

7. NYM: Edwin Diaz –– Narco by Blasterjaxx and Timmy Trumpet

Diaz switched back to this song last season and enjoyed plenty of success, and he told reporters this spring that this will remain his entrance song in the 2021 MLB season.

Diaz has an electric fastball, and this is an electric song. The trumpet playing leads nicely into the very few lyrics of the song. Between the drum, bass, and trumpet, this is a song that can get any crowd rocking.

6. NYY: Aroldis Chapman –– Wake Up by Rage Against the Machine

Similar to Metallica, almost all RATM songs are good pump-up songs. Chapman picked one of the stronger options from them, and it gets Yankee Stadium energized. Coincidentally, “Wake Up” also used to be my alarm tone for every morning.

5. LAD: Kenley Jansen –– California Love by 2PAC

Jansen’s grip on the closer role isn’t too secure entering the 2021 MLB season, but “California Love” will still send Dodger Stadium into a frenzy. Hopefully, Jansen is the closer for a few more seasons because I’m not sure if any song other than this and team victory song “I Love LA” will fire up Chavez Ravine in the same way.

T-3. OAK and ARI: Trevor Rosenthal and Joakim Soria –– Welcome to the Jungle by Guns N’ Roses

There’s a reason why two closers currently use this song. Previously, this song was used by Eric Gagne in his dominant stretch from 2002-2004, and Craig Kimbrel from 2011-2016. From the moment of the first guitar notes, energy levels rise exponentially. The song reaches another level when Axel Rose starts singing the opening verse. This tune could also be used as an anthem for a team taking the field.

2. MIL: Josh Hader –– Renegade by Styx

Most sports fans recognize “Renegade” from Heinz Field, where the Pittsburgh Steelers blast the song during the fourth quarter. Watch any Steelers home game and you will see how fired up a crowd gets when this song comes on. We don’t know if Hader, a Maryland native, was inspired by the Steelers for his choice, but this is a fantastic selection.

1. CLE: James Karinchak –– Wild Thing by X

When I heard that Karinchak was expected to be Cleveland’s closer for the 2021 MLB season, I knew that his song needed to top the list. A fireballing righty for Cleveland wearing number 99 and jogging to the mound to X’s version of “Wild Thing” is the perfect entrance. The only piece Karinchak is missing is a goofy-looking pair of glasses, then he would have the “Wild Thing” persona completely perfected.

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Main image credit: Embed from Getty Images

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Mathias is a graduate student at the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. He is currently studying Broadcast and Digital Journalism on the Sports Media and Communications track. He graduated from The College of New Jersey in 2021, where he studied journalism and served as the Sports Editor and Opinions Editor for the school's newspaper, The Signal. He joined Overtime Heroics as a writer in June of 2019 and became an editor in December of 2020 before taking over the MLB department in June of 2021. Mathias is also a former varsity swimmer and is the youngest of five kids.

1 comment

  • Jared says:

    Where are you getting “Thunder” for McGee? Thought it was Limp Bizkit’s “My Way”

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