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The Hold Up 8/17: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

Ranking baseball's top setup options for the 2023 season.

Lucas Sims had been having a great season up until the All-Star break, but since then has a brutal 7.20 ERA (7.36 xFIP), 2.00 WHIP, and 1.9% K-BB rate over his last 14 outings (10 IP total). The walk rate (21.2% BB rate since the All-Star break) has become the biggest issue as Sims has just lost his feel for the strike zone.

He still somehow leads the team in SV+HLDs since the break with eight, but I can’t imagine that continues as others in this bullpen have been pitching well lately (Ian Gibaut and Fernando Cruz come to mind).

 

Notes

 

  • It’s been a disappointing season for the Yankees, but one bright spot lately has been Michael King, who has been dominant after having back-to-back rough outings coming out of the All-Star break. Over the past 11.2 IP, King has 35% K-BB and 39.6% CSW rates with an xFIP south of 2.00 and just a 0.86 WHIP. He also has 5 of his 8 holds over that span, the second most on the team during that time behind only Tommy Kahnle.
  • Matt Moore had a rough first outing back from the IL following the All-Star break, but since that game, he’s been lights out allowing just one earned run. Over his past 12.1 IP, Moore has a 39.6% K rate to go with a 0.89 WHIP and six holds. The Angels continue to trust Carlos Estévez in the closer role for the time being, but it could be a matter of time until we see Moore or Reynaldo López take over there.

 

  • Brusdar Graterol has been excellent over his past 10.2 IP with a 23.7% K and 61.5% GB rates to go with a 0.75 WHIP and 5 holds. With Joe Kelly on the IL now, Graterol will be leaned on for high-leverage work moving forward and could rack up holds to end the year.
  • Hunter Harvey returned to the Nationals bullpen earlier this week, and while it doesn’t look like he will get back into the closer role this season, he should still see plenty of hold chances moving forward. How much value that will give him in fantasy leagues remains to be seen, but he had been a fairly consistent performer prior to his IL stint.

 

  • Gregory Soto has been very inconsistent over his past 13.1 IP with the Phillies, and while it’s nice to see his walk rate low (6.8%), he’s still struggled to miss bats (15.3% K rate) and has a 6.08 ERA (5.01 xFIP) and 1.43 WHIP. He’s already starting to lose some high-leverage work and once José Alvarado returns, could find himself on the outside looking in for holds.
  • He may not be a huge asset for holds leagues this season, but Abner Uribe is definitely a name you want to keep an eye on (if not roster by now) in most dynasty formats. He’s been fine so far this year, but I think it’s evident there is even more swing-and-miss upside here and as long as he can continue to improve his command, the upside is unlimited.

 

If you would like more daily reliever updates, please check out our Reliever Ranks series.

 

Rank Pitcher Change
1Erik SwansonT1-
2Aroldis Chapman-
3Bryan Abreu-
4Mark Leiter Jr.-
5Jason Adam-
6Joel Payamps
T2
-
7A.J. Minter-
8Tanner Scott-
9Hector Neris-
10Chris Martin+3
11Giovanny Gallegos+UR
12Josh Sborz-
13Griffin Jax-3
14Matt Brash-3
15Yennier Cano-
16Tommy Kahnle
T3
-
17Jordan Hicks+UR
18Trevor Stephan+2
19Brooks Raley-2
20A.J. Puk-6
21Taylor Rogers-3
22Colin Holderman+5
23Reynaldo López+5
24Kevin Ginkel+7
25Michael King
T4
+12
26Matt Moore+13
27Andrew Nardi-2
28Alex Lange+UR
29Brusdar Graterol+11
30Hunter Harvey+UR
31Lucas Sims-12
32-10
33Robert Stephenson-1
34Robert Suarez+1
35John Schreiber+7
36Tim Mayza+2
37Caleb Thielbar+9
38Steven Okert-4
39Jonathan Loáisiga-3
40Seranthony Domínguez+1
41Gregory Soto
T5
-11
42Andrew Chafin-21
43Julian Merryweather-
44Abner Uribe+9
45Steven Wilson-12
46Joe Jiménez-2
47José Soriano-2
48Angel Perdomo+6
49Kendall Graveman+6
50-3
51Kirby Yates-2
52-
53Elvis Peguero-2
54Caleb Ferguson+2
55Pierce Johnson+5
56Aaron Bummer+1
57Eli Morgan+8
58Colin Poche+8
59Matt Strahm+4
60Wandy Peralta+2
61Nick Martinez
T6
-11
62Garrett Whitlock+UR
63Ian Gibaut-4
64Jeff Hoffman-
65Michael Fulmer+2
66Scott McGough-18
67Tyler Kinley-9
68Yimi García-
69Emilio Pagán+22
70Ryan Brasier+7
71Andrew Kittredge+UR
72Josh Winckowski+4
73Chris Stratton+8
74Tom Cosgrove-13
75Sam Hentges+8
76Dylan Coleman
T7
-5
77-4
78José Cisnero-8
79Luke Jackson+6
80Miguel Castro-8
81Drew Smith-2
82Jake Diekman-13
83Fernando Cruz+5
84Ian Hamilton-9
85Nick Sandlin-11
86Jordan Weems+4
87José Leclerc-3
88Austin Cox+1
89Gabe Speier+8
90Joe Mantiply-12
91Kyle Nelson-11
92Phil Bickford+8
93Cionel Pérez+UR
94George Soriano-1
95Enyel De Los Santos-1
96Drew VerHagen+UR
97John King+UR
98Justin Martinez+UR
99Jay Jackson-
100Sam Coonrod+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 8/17: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday”

  1. Keith says:

    Why is Minter ranked 7? He has 1 hold on the past 30 days

  2. John says:

    Why is Tyler Holton not ranked?

  3. Berkshire Jay says:

    Two weeks ago, the Yankees were talking about getting ready to use King in high leverage roles on back-to-back nights and it looked like his holds chances were on the upswing. A week later the Yankees are using him as an opener and talking about stretching him out into some kind hybrid bulk-starter role. This may be necessary to improve the dwindling chance that the Yankees might make the post-season, but I think it will be a disaster for his fantasy value. Bummer, because I was seeing the same under-the-hood improvements and had just picked him up in my holds league.

    Thanks for the great work, as always.

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