The Hold Up 9/24: Ranking the Top 90 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

Rick Graham ranks baseball's top setup men for the 2020 season.

A’s reliever Jake Diekman finally allowed his first earned run of the year, giving up a home run to Edwin Rios in the 8th inning of last night’s game. It also snapped a streak of 5 straight games with a hold for Diekman (he did pick up a win) in the process. It’s been an impressive season for the veteran lefty, albeit a lucky one (.194 BABIP), but impressive as he leads the league in holds with 12. His 36.8% K rate ranks 14th amongst all relievers this season, while his 14.5% BB rate also ranks 15th highest (or lowest I suppose). He’s allowed only 8 hits all year, reminding me a lot of Brandon Workman’s 2019 season. While it’s been a great 2020 for Diekman, and I’m sure he has won some people some leagues, beware of the inevitable regression that will come next season.



  • After a very slow start to the year, Will Smith now has 4 holds over the past two weeks and is back on the fantasy radar for the last weekend of the season as the Braves host the Red Sox. I still like Chris Martin a little bit better as he has rattled off 16 straight innings without allowing a run.
  • The Angels bullpen has been on fire to start the week, with Mike Mayers (listed with the closers), Matt Andriese, and Felix Pena totaling 7 SV+HLD’s over the first 3 days of the week. The team gets a tough matchup this weekend with the Dodgers, but all three are still worth considering for those looking for holds.
  • The Phillies have struggled to find consistency in their bullpen all season long, but may be turning a corner here as Tommy Hunter has pitched well in his past 5 games and figures to finish the season as the team’s top setup option in front of closer Hector Neris.
  • Jonathan Hernandez has had a great season for the Rangers, but ending the season with a 4 game series against the Astros isn’t exactly ideal. Hernandez and Rafael Montero’s seasons have two of the positives in a dismal Rangers season, and with Jose Leclerc returning next year, this bullpen could be a real strength for them.


Rank Pitcher Change
1Devin WilliamsT1-
2Drew Pomeranz-
3Tyler Duffey-
4Diego Castillo-
5Sergio Romo
6Jake Diekman+2
8James Karinchak+2
9Archie Bradley-
10Blake Treinen-4
11Chris Martin
12Will Smith+7
13Zack Britton-1
14Matt Andriese+12
15Joakim Soria+5
16Ryan Brasier+7
17Andrew Miller+UR
18Nick Wittgren+9
19Jesse Hahn+6
21Tommy Hunter+19
22Justin Wilson+6
23Félix Peña+23
24Scott Barlow-13
25Shane Greene-7
26Chad Green
27Jonathan Hernández-14
28Will Harris-7
29Josh Staumont-7
30Tyler Clippard+6
31Wander Suero+1
32Codi Heuer+15
33Ryan Helsley+20
34Yimi García-10
35Gregory Soto-6
36Emilio Pagán-6
37Pedro Báez-6
38Tyler Webb+6
39Trevor May-2
40Anthony Bass+5
41Craig Kimbrel
42Freddy Peralta-
43Yusmeiro Petit-10
44Adam Ottavino+5
45Lucas Sims-10
46Miguel Castro+14
47Kyle McGowin-8
48David Phelps+2
49Hunter Harvey+14
50Héctor Rondón+9
51Mychal Givens-
53A.J. Cole-1
54Alex Reyes+4
55Yohan Ramírez-1
56Buck Farmer-1
57Tanner Scott+7
58Carlos Estévez-1
59Brusdar Graterol+3
60Oliver Drake+8
61Jake McGee
62JoJo Romero-28
63Phil Maton-20
64Brandon Workman-8
65Jarlín García+4
66Matt Foster+9
67Junior Guerra+7
68Tyler Matzek+3
69Enoli Paredes-2
70Sam Coonrod+19
71A.J. Minter-1
72Anthony Misiewicz+10
73Kendall Graveman+UR
74Kyle Ryan+10
75Ty Buttrey+UR
76Aaron Loup+UR
77T.J. McFarland-11
78Craig Stammen-6
81Ryan Sherriff+UR
82Brent Suter-5
83Nick Vincent-5
84Ryan Tepera+3
85Pierce Johnson-6
86Marcus Walden+UR
87Chris Stratton+UR
88Tim Hill-7
89James Hoyt-3
90Chasen Shreve-2


Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm 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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