CHICAGO (WSCR) The closer role is reserved for a team’s best, and most reliable relief pitcher. For the Chicago White Sox, Sergio Santos has taken a strangle hold over that role.

“He’s rediscovered that slider, the release point on the slider,” Steve Stone said on the Danny Mac Show. “He has a slider that’s very similar to [Carlos] Marmol’s. So I mean when the slider is good, nobody hits it. It’s not that they don’t hit it hard, it’s nobody hits it. So he’s got that. He throws 97 [miles per hour]. He doesn’t have all the control issues that Marmol has. He’s only blown two saves, Marmol has blown five, something along those lines. I’m not going to tell you he’s at that level yet, but he’s pretty close.

LISTEN: Steve Stone On The Danny Mac Show

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“And bear in mind, he wasn’t a [closer] when this season started. Last year was his first year of pitching. He wasn’t even used as a premier setup man most of last season. Didn’t win the battle for closer out of spring training. They handed him that baseball, I think he’s now 17 out of 19 in save situations, and he’s a tough guy with a great pitchers mentality. Now what he has to do is start getting a backlog of innings pitched. And the only way to do that is to go to the mound and pitch them.”