It’s very weird seeing Josh Hader and Craig Kimbrel on this list and even tougher to rank them moving forward as they aren’t very helpful right now, but you still aren’t dropping someone like Hader this season unless he lands on the IL. Right now I’d much prefer Brooks Raley to Hader, and if you are pushing for a playoff spot over the next 2-3 weeks, that may be a swap I’d consider making whereas if you already have a playoff spot locked up, you hang onto Hader and hope he can help you when it matters. This is a hypothetical obviously as Raley should probably be rostered in all leagues where holds count anyway, as he has been quite dominant over his past 17 innings dating back to early July with 17 K’s, 12 SV+HLD’s (most in baseball), a 1.06 ERA and 0.941 WHIP.
- Brusdar Graterol returned from the IL this past week and has already had two quality outings coming against the Brewers (was even able to produce 4 K’s!). While it remains to be seen what his role will be now, he could certainly factor in to the saves mix with Craig Kimbrel out and only Evan Phillips as his real competition.
- Robert Suarez has been great this month since returning from the IL, and with Josh Hader moving down the depth chart for the time being, it should open up a set up role for him and Nick Martinez. Suárez intrigues me a bit more however, as I think there is ultimately more swing and miss ability there, but both have been pitching well as of late.
- Matt Bush has found success in Milwaukee after his first two outings went sideways, even working his way into a secondary set up role it seems. While Bush carries more swing and miss upside, I still get the feeling Brad Boxberger will be called on in more holds chances than Bush, at least for now.
- John Brebbia has moved into a set up role for the Giants with fellow relievers Dominic Leone and Tyler Rogers both having their fair share of issues this season, and while he doesn’t provide a ton of strikeout upside, he does have five holds over the past two and a half weeks.
- Matt Moore remains in the mix to close out games for the Rangers and continues to surprise this season in a relief capacity. He’s had some issues with walks this month (8 in 9.1 IP) but he’s still getting a ton of swinging strikes and has the trust of interim manager Tony Beasley.
- Old friend José Alvarado had a fantastic week and while we know how volatile he is given the command issues, he may be worth taking a look at with their bullpen a little beat up at the moment. For the month (7.1 IP), Alvarado has allowed just one earned run on five hits while striking out twelve and walking only one.
Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)