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The Hold Up 7/28: Ranking the Top 100 Relievers for Holds Every Thursday

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

Right now, all things considered, Evan Phillips is likely the most trustworthy option in the Dodgers bullpen. As is the case with John Schreiber in Boston and Jason Adam in Tampa Bay, no one expected this back in March but here we are. While he only has 12 SV+HLD’s (plus four wins) since May 1st, he also holds a .60 ERA and .93 WHIP while striking out 33 over 30 innings of work. The Dodgers will more than likely make a move for a bullpen arm this week, but even after that and with Blake Treinen nearing his return, there should still be value here for Phillips as a secondary setup option who can help with ratios, K’s and the occasional win.

 

Notes

 

  • Félix Bautista has burst onto the scene as one of the top setup men in baseball this season, with a three-pitch mix that features a fastball that sits at 99 MPH and a splitter/slider combo that both induce Whiffs over 45% of the time. He’s allowed just two runs over his last 25.2 innings, striking out 35 over that span while walking only 7 to go along with eleven holds and three wins. With the Orioles hanging around in the Wild Card race, they are not a team to worry about providing SV+HLD chances to their relievers anymore.

 

  • Adam Ottavino has bounced back in a big way this season despite a slow start and has quietly been one of the Mets’ best bullpen pieces behind Edwin Díaz. Ottavino has been outstanding since the calendar flipped to June, allowing just two earned runs while having a 19/3 K/BB rate and nine holds over 20.2 innings. Drew Smith has been trending the other way and will likely continue to lose hold chances to Ottavino.

 

  • James Karinchak is back in the Guardians’ pen and appears to have regained a feel for his curveball again, as he’s producing career-high spin rates on the pitch after seeing those numbers plummet last year following the “sticky substance ban”. His fastball velo/spin is still down a bit, however, and the command issues are still a concern, but the upside is obviously intriguing to chase here, especially if he can work his way back into high leverage work soon.

 

  • Just when it had looked like Tyler Duffey had perhaps found the magic that made him one of the best relievers in baseball from 2019 through 2020, he goes out and lays an egg in July. Despite only allowing one run for the month, he finished with a 4/3 K/BB rate with seven hits allowed with just one save and no holds. There are a ton of higher upside arms to chase at this point, and it even looks like teammate Emilio Pagán might be turning a corner (16/1 K/BB rate over 8.1 IP in July!).

 

Rank Pitcher Change
1Devin WilliamsT1-
2Andrés Muñoz
T2
+4
3Giovanny Gallegos+4
4John Schreiber-1
5A.J. Minter-3
6Jason Adam-1
7Evan Phillips+1
8Félix Bautista+12
9Rafael Montero+9
10Michael Fulmer+1
11Kendall Graveman
T3
+1
12Eli Morgan+1
13Héctor Neris+1
14Alex Lange+1
15Andrew Chafin+1
16Griffin Jax+1
17Erik Swanson+14
18Corey Knebel+5
19Seth Lugo-
20Wil Crowe+1
21Pete Fairbanks
T4
+1
22Ryne Stanek+8
23Luis García+11
24Anthony Bass+11
25A.J. Puk+12
26Scott Effross+12
27Yimi García+9
28Tanner Houck+UR
29Josh Staumont-4
30Brad Boxberger-4
31Génesis Cabrera
T5
-7
32Collin McHugh-4
33Emilio Pagán+12
34Joe Mantiply+5
35Adam Ottavino+18
36Adam Cimber+14
37Steven Okert+15
38Colin Poche-11
39Tim Mayza+4
40Ryan Tepera-8
41Aroldis Chapman
T6
+1
42Jonathan Loáisiga+5
43José Leclerc+3
44Jonathan Hernández+4
45Tyler Matzek-5
46Brad Hand+3
47Will Smith+4
48Brock Burke+10
49Domingo Acevedo+11
50James Karinchak+23
51Mychal Givens+13
52Phil Maton+10
53Jordan Hicks+3
54Dominic Leone+5
55Joe Jiménez+10
56Zach Jackson+11
57Nick Martinez+UR
58Carl Edwards Jr.+3
59Aaron Loup-15
60Tyler Duffey-19
61Trevor Stephan
T7
-6
62Dennis Santana-5
63Ryan Thompson+3
64Connor Brogdon+4
65Alex Vesia+4
66Sam Moll+UR
67Taylor Clarke+11
68Víctor Arano+UR
69Dylan Coleman+3
70Lucas Gilbreath+25
71Matt Moore+20
72Matt Festa+21
73Dylan Floro+9
74Wandy Peralta+3
75Dillon Tate+12
76Yency Almonte+12
77Bryan Abreu+19
78Penn Murfee+12
79Jose Cuas+13
80Keynan Middleton+UR
81José Alvarado
T8
-7
82Steven Wilson-19
83Matt Brash-13
84Jake Diekman+13
85John Brebbia-4
86Andrew Bellatti-3
87Matt Bush-2
88Robert Stephenson+10
89Jimmy Lambert+UR
90Ron Marinaccio+UR
91Tyler Rogers-16
92Joely Rodríguez-21
93Duane Underwood Jr.-13
94Phil Bickford-18
95Trevor Gott-9
96Cionel Pérez-7
97Keegan Akin-3
98José Ruiz+UR
99Enyel De Los Santos-
100Yerry De Los Santos-

 

Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns 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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