The Hold Up 7/13: Ranking the Top 70 Relievers for Holds Every Week

While it’s been a quiet week due to the MLB All-Star break, now is a good time to take a deeper look at potential future closers in these tiers. There...

While it’s been a quiet week due to the MLB All-Star break, now is a good time to take a deeper look at potential future closers in these tiers. There are also two of the better options sitting on the DL currently in Arodys Vizcaino and Keone Kela. Both should be back soon after the break, with Kela having the chance to earn saves right away and Vizcaino more of a wait and see guy.

TIER 1: Good Vibrations

1. Andrew Miller (Cleveland Indians)

2. Chris Devenski (Houston Astros

  • Even following a disastrous outing Saturday, Chris Devenski is still my second favorite non-closer to own for the 2nd half of the season. His usage and ability contribute in almost every category put him above the rest of the pack.

TIER 2: I’ll Be There For You 

3. Archie Bradley (Arizona Diamondbacks

4. Dellin Betances (New York Yankees)

5. Brad Brach (Baltimore Orioles)

6. Brad Hand (San Diego Padres)

7. Mychal Givens (Baltimore Orioles

8. Will Harris (Houston Astros

9. Carl Edwards Jr. (Chicago Cubs)  

10. Sean Doolittle (Oakland Athletics)

11. Tommy Kahnle (Chicago White Sox

12. Cam Bedrosian (Los Angeles Angels)

13. Trevor Rosenthal (St. Louis Cardinals)

14. Ryan Madson (Oakland Athletics)

15. Mike Minor (Kansas City Royals)

  • There are many potential options here who could end the year as their respective teams closers. I’d like to think Archie Bradley could have a chance, but the team seems likely to live and die with Fernando Rodney in the 9th. Regardless, he should continue in that Chris Devenski role and should post similar numbers.
  • Trevor Rosenthal and Sean Doolittle are probably out of the closer discussion for the time being, but both could find themselves in save situations sooner rather than later. Both have had success in the past in the role, which does set them apart from others in the top 20.

TIER 3: Torn

16. Taylor Rogers (Minnesota Twins)

17. Pedro Baez (Los Angeles Dodgers)

18. Darren O’Day (Baltimore Orioles)

19. Pat Neshek (Philadelphia Phillies)

20. Brad Boxberger (Tampa Bay Rays)

21. Michael Lorenzen (Cincinnati Reds)

22. Hector Rondon (Chicago Cubs

23. Ryan Buchter (San Diego Padres)

24. David Phelps (Miami Marlins)  

25. Juan Nicasio (Pittsburgh Pirates

26. Brett Cecil (St. Louis Cardinals)

27. Kyle Barraclough (Miami Marlins)

28. Jake McGee (Colorado Rockies)

29. Matt Barnes (Boston Red Sox)

30. Joakim Soria (Kansas City Royals)

  • Brad Boxberger seems like another good option on this list to find himself closing out games come August/September. He has yet to allow a hit in 4 appearances since returning from the DL, while also striking out 7. Alex Colome has struggled and could also be a trade candidate this month.
  • Matt Barnes continues to pitch fairly well in setting up Craig Kimbrel, and unless the Red Sox make a move to bring in a top flight reliever, should stay in that role for the rest of the season. I like those odds, given how it sounds like the Red Sox won’t make any major trades before the deadline.

TIER 4: You Get What You Give

31. Jose Leclerc (Texas Rangers)

32. Koji Uehara (Chicago Cubs)

33. Pedro Strop (Chicago Cubs)

34. Blake Parker (Los Angeles Angels)

35. Adam Ottavino (Colorado Rockies

36. Bryan Shaw (Cleveland Indians)  

37. Jacob Barnes (Milwaukee Brewers

38. Hunter Strickland (San Francisco Giants)   

39. Matt Bowman (St. Louis Cardinals

40. Luke Gregerson (Houston Astros)

41. Anthony Swarzak (Chicago White Sox)

42. Danny Barnes (Toronto Blue Jays

43. Shane Greene (Detroit Tigers)  

44. Nick Vincent (Seattle Mariners)

45. Jose Ramirez (Atlanta Braves)

46. Joaquin Benoit (Philadelphia Phillies

47. Joe Kelly (Boston Red Sox)

48. Michael Feliz (Houston Astros)

49. George Kontos (San Francisco Giants

50. Drew Storen (Cincinnati Reds)

  • With both Seung Hwan Oh and Trevor Rosenthal going through some issues over the past month, there’s certainly an opportunity for Matt Bowman to make a run at earning some saves. Outside of maybe Brett Cecil, he has been the teams best option out of the pen over the past month and the fact he is right-handed could give him a leg up if Oh and Rosenthal falter further.
  • Tommy Kahnle has been the White Sox reliever most talked about as replacing David Robertson if/when he is traded, but Anthony Swarzak should probably be added to the discussion as well. He hit a bit of a rough patch a while ago in what has been a solid season and has been one of the best relievers over the past two weeks.

TIER 5: There She Goes 

51. Chase Whitley (Tampa Bay Rays 

52. Daniel Hudson (Pittsburgh Pirates)

53. Phil Maton (San Diego Padres

54. Paul Sewald (New York Mets)

55. Tony Zych (Seattle Mariners)

56. Chad Green (New York Yankees)

57. James Pazos (Seattle Mariners)

58. Andrew Chafin (Arizona Diamondbacks

59. Mike Dunn (Colorado Rockies

60. Blake Treinen (Washington Nationals)

61. Wandy Peralta (Cincinnati Reds)

62. Kirby Yates (San Diego Padres)

63. Jared Hughes (Milwaukee Brewers)

64. Nick Wittgren (Miami Marlins)

65. Alex Claudio (Texas Rangers)

66. Adam Warren (New York Yankees)

67. Tony Watson (Pittsburgh Pirates)

68. Jeff Beliveau (Toronto Blue Jays)

69. Tyler Lyons (St. Louis Cardinals)

70. Peter Moylan (Kansas City Royals)

  • I still feel like Phil Maton is a really good deep sleeper to earn save chances this season, despite allowing runs in 3 of his past 4 outings. He has a 14:1 K:BB ratio in his first 12 MLB innings while picking 3 holds and a save. The Padres clearly seem comfortable throwing him into the fire right away, handing him the ball in high leverage situations.


Top 50 RP’s for SV+HD Leagues

1. Kenley Jansen (Los Angeles Dodgers)

2. Craig Kimbrel (Boston Red Sox)

3. Andrew Miller (Cleveland Indians)

4. Roberto Osuna (Toronto Blue Jays)

5. Aroldis Chapman (New York Yankees)

6. Zach Britton (Baltimore Orioles)

7. Chris Devenski (Houston Astros

8. Greg Holland (Colorado Rockies)

9. Archie Bradley (Arizona Diamondbacks

10. Wade Davis (Chicago Cubs)

11. Dellin Betances (New York Yankees)

12. Ken Giles (Houston Astros)

13. Brad Brach (Baltimore Orioles)

14. Felipe Rivero (Pittsburgh Pirates)  

15. Brad Hand (San Diego Padres)

16. Corey Knebel (Milwaukee Brewers)

17. Raisel Iglesias (Cincinnati Reds)

18. Mychal Givens (Baltimore Orioles

19. Will Harris (Houston Astros

20. Edwin Diaz (Seattle Mariners)

21. Cody Allen (Cleveland Indians)

22. Carl Edwards Jr. (Chicago Cubs)  

23. Sean Doolittle (Oakland Athletics)

24. Addison Reed (New York Mets)

25. Tommy Kahnle (Chicago White Sox

26. Cam Bedrosian (Los Angeles Angels)

27. Justin Wilson (Detroit Tigers)

28. Kelvin Herrera (Kansas City Royals)

29. Bud Norris (Los Angeles Angels)

30. Trevor Rosenthal (St. Louis Cardinals)

31. David Robertson (Chicago White Sox)

32. Ryan Madson (Oakland Athletics)

33. Mike Minor (Kansas City Royals).

34. Alex Colome (Tampa Bay Rays)

35. Taylor Rogers (Minnesota Twins)

36. Pedro Baez (Los Angeles Dodgers)

37. A.J. Ramos (Miami Marlins)

38. Darren O’Day (Baltimore Orioles)

39. Pat Neshek (Philadelphia Phillies)

40. Brad Boxberger (Tampa Bay Rays)

41. Brandon Kintzler (Minnesota Twins)

42. Michael Lorenzen (Cincinnati Reds)

43. Hector Rondon (Chicago Cubs

44. Hector Neris (Philadelphia Phillies)

45. Brandon Maurer (San Diego Padres)

46. Ryan Buchter (San Diego Padres)

47. David Phelps (Miami Marlins)  

48. Juan Nicasio (Pittsburgh Pirates

49. Fernando Rodney (Arizona Diamondbacks)

50. Brett Cecil (St. Louis Cardinals)

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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