The Hold Up 6/16: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

Ranking baseball's top setup options for the 2022 season.

Génesis Cabrera has entrenched himself as the secondary setup option for the Cardinals this season, but due to his ability to induce weak contact (85.2 avg. exit velo) and groundballs (48%) rather than striking hitters out. While the velocity has come down 1.5 MPH on average this season, it has brought his walk rate down with it, going from 16.7% in 2020, to 12.2% in 2021 and just 7% this season. For a lefty who still sits in the high 90’s with his fastball, Cabrera definitely underwhelms in the swing-and-miss department (24% Whiff rate). The changeup has become a weapon against righties (41.5% Whiff) while his curveball does its job against lefties. Similar to Gregory Soto who I talked about earlier in the week, as long as the walk rate stays down, there should be value here even if the strikeout numbers aren’t what we had hoped they would be.




  • The Phillies have removed Corey Knebel from the closer role for the time being, opting to go with a committee approach in the ninth moving forward. Seranthony Domínguez and Brad Hand are probably the favorites to split the duties here, but Connor Brogdon has also pitched really well as of late.


  • Erik Swanson, Tim Mayza, and Joe Kelly each returned from the IL this past week, and should all go back into some sort of high leverage work for their respective teams. Kelly in particular is needed in Chicago with Liam Hendriks landing on the IL with the dreaded forearm strain.


  • The Giants bullpen has undergone a bit of a reshuffling as of late, with Camilo Doval getting usage outside of the ninth inning and Dominic Leone replacing Tyler Rogers in high leverage situations. Jake McGee is also back and looking better, and could become a consistent factor in holds leagues once again.


  • It looks like Tanner Houck will get a chance to lock down the closer role in Boston, but who will be the team’s top lefty option out of the pen between Matt Strahm and Jake Diekman? Strahm looks like the preferred option for now but that could change in a weekend. Austin Davis has been quietly effective as well here.



  • June has been really rough on Mychal Givens as he’s allowed six earned runs on five hits while walking six over just 3.2 innings pitched. Givens does have a history of command issues, so this may not just be an unlucky stretch. This entire Cubs bullpen has been problematic much of the season so Givens should still get chances to be a factor late in tight games.



Rank Pitcher Change
1Devin WilliamsT1-
2Giovanny Gallegos-
3Jhoan Duran+UR
4Daniel Hudson+1
5Paul Sewald+UR
6A.J. Minter
7Michael King+2
8Seranthony Domínguez+12
9Héctor Neris-6
10Michael Fulmer-2
11Ryan Tepera-4
12Seth Lugo-1
13Josh Staumont-1
14Griffin Jax+9
15Génesis Cabrera+11
16Brooks Raley
17Drew Smith-
18Alex Lange+1
19Eli Morgan+5
20Will Smith+11
21Colin Poche+6
22Andrew Chafin-7
23John Schreiber+UR
24Brad Boxberger+1
25Matt Wisler+4
26Ryne Stanek+12
27Rafael Montero+8
28Erik Swanson+UR
29Tim Mayza+UR
30Joe Kelly+UR
31Yimi García
32Luis García-10
33Félix Bautista+9
34Andrés Muñoz+2
35Evan Phillips+8
36Dennis Santana+9
37Caleb Ferguson+12
38Brock Burke+9
39Wil Crowe+5
40Dominic Leone+25
41Adam Cimber-
42Aaron Loup-10
43Scott Effross-3
44A.J. Puk+11
45Steven Okert+3
46Phil Maton
47Trevor Stephan+5
48Matt Strahm+12
49Anthony Bass+15
51Alex Vesia-1
52Brusdar Graterol+2
53Steven Wilson+8
54Jake Diekman-20
55Tyler Duffey-2
56Joe Mantiply-
57Joely Rodríguez-6
58Mychal Givens-25
59Ian Kennedy-
60Hansel Robles-2
61Noé Ramirez+10
62Wandy Peralta+7
63Adam Ottavino+4
64Joe Smith-1
65Brad Hand+3
66Dillon Tate+4
67Connor Brogdon+27
68Jake McGee+UR
69Matt Bush+7
70Caleb Thielbar+16
71Kyle Finnegan
72Zach Jackson+3
73Jalen Beeks-11
74Rowan Wick-
75Bryan Abreu+12
76Dylan Coleman+13
77John Brebbia+11
78Matt Foster-5
79Austin Davis+3
80Cionel Pérez+16
81Will Vest+UR
82Penn Murfee+8
83Lou Trivino-5
84Art Warren-27
85Dylan Floro-6
86Luis Cessa+UR
87Miguel Castro+UR
88Reynaldo López+UR
89Sam Hentges+UR
90José Cuas+UR
91José Ruiz-11
92Jeurys Familia-11
93José Alvarado+UR
94Joel Kuhnel+UR
95John King-29
96Carl Edwards Jr.-1
97Alex Colomé+UR
98Jeff Hoffman-1
99Tony Santillan+UR
100Hunter Strickland+UR


Photo by Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Rick Graham

Rick resides in the Boston area and has experience as a player and coach at the collegiate level. He has been covering relievers for Pitcher List since 2017.

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