The Hold Up 6/9: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

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

Seranthony Domínguez has had quite the successful return from Tommy John surgery, arguably being the Phillies best reliever this season to date. Dominguez is allowing some hard contact, but he’s striking out hitters at a good clip (32.1% K rate) with his slider at a 50% Whiff rate. With a new manager, I had some hope there might be consideration to make a change at closer as Corey Knebel continues to struggle, but for now it looks like the team will stick with the current hierarchy. Still, Seranthony should be in line for more hold chances as the best reliever on the roster, and we could see him double that total (8 on the year) by the All-Star break.




  • Luis García has emerged as the Padres top holds option and there isn’t even much competition at this point. García has picked up right where he left off last season, albeit with a new team, and should continue to be a source of holds while not being a big factor anywhere else really.


  • I miss a week and all of a sudden Eli Morgan is the Guardians top setup guy and has five holds on the season, all over the past two weeks. Morgan doesn’t throw hard but has a solid three-pitch mix to get lefties and righties out. The 35.1% K rate is bound to come back down to earth eventually with no true “out” pitch (and 28.8% CSW / 28.3% Whiff rates), but there’s still a good reliever here worth a look in most holds leagues.


  • Ryne Stanek only has 4 holds on the season but he has been one of the Astros top relievers and I could see him overtaking Rafael Montero at some point for a set up role. Despite the low strikeout rate, Stanek is still missing bats at a high level (33.1% Whiff rate) and hasn’t allowed a run since April.


  • Yimi Garcia has been a bit of a rollercoaster this season, but he was able to finish May on a high note which has carried over into June. Adam Cimber would be the other top setup option here and similarly to Garcia, isn’t known for getting swings and misses. I don’t exactly trust either one to hold up over the entirety of the season, but if I had to take a chance on one for now, it’d be Garcia.


  • Speaking of limited strikeout upside, Dennis Santana has moved into a consistent high leverage role with the Rangers after picking up five holds over the past two weeks. Santana does a great job limiting hard contact and inducing ground balls at a near 50% rate but his 14.3% K rate leaves a lot to be desired.



Rank Pitcher Change
1Devin WilliamsT1-
2Giovanny Gallegos+UR
3Héctor Neris
4Kendall Graveman+1
5Daniel Hudson+2
6Diego Castillo-
7Ryan Tepera-3
8Michael Fulmer-
9Michael King+1
10A.J. Minter+3
11Seth Lugo
12Josh Staumont-1
13Aaron Bummer-1
14Jason Adam+UR
15Andrew Chafin-1
16Brooks Raley-1
17Drew Smith+5
18Alexis Díaz+7
19Alex Lange+8
20Seranthony Domínguez+13
21Emilio Pagán
22Luis García+14
23Griffin Jax+11
24Eli Morgan+UR
25Brad Boxberger+13
26Génesis Cabrera+13
27Colin Poche+15
28Tyler Kinley+12
29Matt Wisler+12
31Will Smith-10
32Aaron Loup-16
33Mychal Givens+4
34Jake Diekman-8
35Rafael Montero-6
36Andrés Muñoz
37Tanner Houck+UR
38Ryne Stanek+17
39Yimi García+22
40Scott Effross+4
41Adam Cimber+11
42Félix Bautista+8
43Evan Phillips+17
44Wil Crowe+19
45Dennis Santana+54
46Phil Maton-14
47Brock Burke-1
48Steven Okert+31
49Caleb Ferguson+UR
50Alex Vesia-22
51Joely Rodríguez
52Trevor Stephan-28
53Tyler Duffey-10
54Brusdar Graterol-6
55A.J. Puk-1
56Joe Mantiply+11
57Art Warren+UR
58Hansel Robles-11
59Ian Kennedy+3
60Matt Strahm-11
61Steven Wilson-30
62Jalen Beeks+6
63Joe Smith-10
64Anthony Bass-7
65Dominic Leone+15
66John King+UR
67Adam Ottavino+7
68Brad Hand+16
69Wandy Peralta+UR
70Dillon Tate+16
71Noé Ramirez
72Cole Sulser+UR
73Matt Foster-14
74Rowan Wick-2
75Zach Jackson-11
76Matt Bush+14
77Kyle Finnegan+UR
78Lou Trivino-3
79Dylan Floro-9
80José Ruiz-7
81Jeurys Familia+6
82Austin Davis+10
83Chasen Shreve+UR
84David Phelps+UR
85Jimmy Herget+10
86Caleb Thielbar+10
87Bryan Abreu+10
88John Brebbia+10
89Dylan Coleman+UR
90Penn Murfee+UR
91Jovani Moran+UR
92Oliver Ortega+UR
93Colin Holderman+UR
94Connor Brogdon+UR
95Carl Edwards Jr.+UR
96Cionel Pérez+UR
97Jeff Hoffman+UR
98Anthony Banda+UR
99Duane Underwood Jr.+UR
100Kyle Nelson+UR



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.

3 responses to “The Hold Up 6/9: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday”

  1. Confused says:

    Schreiber BOS – was he left out for some reason? Surely he belongs somewhere in tier 3 / 4 ??

  2. theKraken says:

    Luis Garcia is linked to one of the hundred other Luis Garcias. I don’t understand why he is the guy they go with. He is old, doesn’t have great numbers or any useful track record (career WHIP of 1.5). He is a good posterboy of the fact that being a setup guy is very easy. They are the placekickers of MLB. Why not use Stammen who is just better since forever. I wonder if Morejon is going to be a guy for them pretty soon. Baez could also join the mix soon. Both failed SP that were formerly top specs.

    Stanek is garbage. IMO he is the epitome of replaceable garbage. Anyone could succeed in that role. Montero is pretty good though. I have seen him pitch a lot and he epitomizes the modern game – zero execution. I am just sitting there frustrated that I have to watch that as MLB pitching. He is as effective as his BABIP is low. I can’t understand why they don’t just put some other failed starter in the role. I really do’nt like Stanek.

    Knebel has proved beyond any doubt that he should never be relied on as a primary bullpen arm. That bullpen is super weird because they have quite a few guys that could have a good year in that role but all are plan B. Is there a team with more guys that have significant saves in one bullpen than PHI? Ironically, Neris is a healthier version of Knebel.

    You are very good at ranking middle relievers. I am just mystified at who gets the privilege of getting the high leverage roles vs who does not. The other half of is it is who is getting lucky. Its crazy to me how much people’s roles change through the course of a year.

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