He now has more than 600 saves in his career, and though we’re in an age where nearly every team has a closer who will rack up 20-30 saves, that’s still quite impressive. From 1994 through 2009, a stretch of 16 seasons, Hoffman saved 47% of his team’s victories. He may not have been flashy and he may not have won a World Series, but he was the nbest closer in his league for a decade and a half. He’ll suffer in comparison with the closer who was the best in the AL during the same period: Mariano Rivera. Through 2010, Rivera had been asked to get more than three outs 231 times, while Hoffman had 146 (none since 2004 and only seven since 2001). But that comparison is hardly fair. Rivera is the greatest of all-time, and Hoffman was used like most other closers of his era: to get three outs or fewer. Rivera was an exception to that rule, and Hoffman doesn’t deserve to be discounted because he wasn’t Mariano Rivera.