The Hold Up 9/8: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

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

Since the start of June, Adam Ottavino has been one of the best relievers in baseball with a 1.18 ERA and .82 WHIP despite having a K rate under 30%. The reason for his success has been the decrease in walks which plagued him the past few seasons. Now he’s back to trusting his stuff again and doing an amazing job of limiting hard contact (85 MPH average exit velo) while also getting groundballs over 50% of the time (highest GB rate for him since 2016).




  • Pete Fairbanks has been lights out after missing the first half of the season, and has now gone 17 straight games without allowing a run while allowing just 7 hits and 2 walks over that span and striking out 26. He and Jason Adam appear to be sharing the closer role at the moment, with both seemingly interchangeable.


  • Josh Hader was called on for another save opportunity last night, and converted while Nick Martinez worked the 8th inning. It looks like Hader’s stint outside of the closer role has come to an end, while Martinez figures to remain in a high leverage role, likely in that top set up spot.


  • José Leclerc picked up another save on Tuesday, as he appears to be moving towards claiming the closer role in Texas. Matt Moore still figures to be a factor and despite Jonathan Hernández’s recent struggles, it may be too early to consider him out of the running.


  • José Alvarado continued his strong second half this past week and has walked just three batters since August began (11.1 IP) while striking out 17. We’ve seen these spurts of greatness from Alvarado come and go, but with a tweak to his pitch repertoire (increased cutter usage) this new Alvarado could be here to last.


  • Bryan Abreu has been an unsung hero for the Astros this season, and it’s nice to see him start adding holds as well lately with two of his five holds on the season coming this past week. Even if he isn’t racking up holds on a weekly basis, there is still value here similarly to Collin McHugh.


  • I’m not sure if it has already happened yet, but Matt Bush should be one of the Brewers top two set up options the rest of the season, as Brad Boxberger has really struggled over the second half plus with a 1.875 WHIP since July. Bush has one of the best fastball/curveball combo’s in all of baseball, and has allowed just three earned runs over his past 12.2 IP with the Brewers to go along with a .71 WHIP and 18 K’s.


Rank Pitcher Change
1Raisel IglesiasT1-
2Andrés Muñoz-
3Jhoan Duran+1
4Giovanny Gallegos-1
5Evan Phillips+UR
6Pete Fairbanks+5
7Brooks Raley-2
8A.J. Minter
9Héctor Neris+3
10Kendall Graveman-3
11Trevor Stephan-2
12Erik Swanson-2
13Garrett Whitlock+UR
14James Karinchak+3
15Blake Treinen-1
16Adam Ottavino+7
17Diego Castillo-4
18Joe Jiménez+1
19Griffin Jax+3
20Andrew Chafin-
21Michael Fulmer-3
22Nick Martinez+UR
23José Leclerc+4
24Anthony Bass+2
25Alex Lange-1
26Taylor Rogers
27José Alvarado+23
28Jonathan Loáisiga+11
29Jordan Hicks+14
30Bryan Abreu+30
31Matt Bush+18
32Colin Poche+9
33Joe Mantiply-2
34Carl Edwards Jr.-2
35Robert Suarez-1
36Seth Lugo-8
37Collin McHugh-
38Matt Brash+6
39Luis Garcia-10
40Ryne Stanek-2
41Trevor May
42Will Smith-2
43Aaron Bummer+UR
44Yimi García-8
45Steven Okert-15
46Brock Burke-4
47Brad Boxberger-22
48Eli Morgan-2
49Kirby Yates-2
50Cionel Pérez+2
51Brad Hand-6
52Tyler Matzek-4
53José Quijada-2
54Alex Vesia-1
55Dylan Coleman-1
56Caleb Thielbar-1
57Matt Moore-1
58Ryan Tepera-1
59Hunter Harvey+9
60Adam Cimber+1
61Aaron Loup
62Emilio Pagán-4
63Mychal Givens+2
64Dillon Tate+3
65Tim Mayza+9
66Carlos Estévez-
67John Brebbia-8
68Phil Maton+1
69Reynaldo López+2
70Matt Barnes-6
71Alex Young+UR
72Matt Strahm+11
73Adrian Morejon-3
74Andrew Bellatti+13
75Chris Martin+15
76Lou Trivino+13
77Connor Brogdon+1
78Phil Bickford+10
79Reyes Moronta+UR
80Wandy Peralta+11
81Brett Martin
82Kevin Ginkel+UR
84Rowan Wick-4
85Dylan Floro-4
86Ron Marinaccio-14
87Andre Pallante-11
88Sam Coonrod-15
89Jake Diekman-10
90Domingo Acevedo-27
91JT Chargois-9
92Shawn Armstrong-7
93Taylor Hearn+1
94Joely Rodríguez-10
95Manny Bañuelos+5
96Sam Moll-
97Jalen Beeks-2
98Michael Rucker+1
99Dominic Leone+UR
100Joel Kuhnel+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.

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