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Pedro Strop
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Strike Zone

2020 Reliever Rankings

by Matthew Pouliot
Updated On: July 17, 2019, 5:11 am ET

I usually do this over the All-Star break, but time didn’t allow for it last week. So here now are my very, very preliminary 2020 player rankings. I’ve done my best to list players where they’ll be eligible next year, and the free agents-to-be are listed without teams. Players with options for next year are still listed with their current teams if those options have a legitimate chance of being exercised. Those players are noted with asterisks.

Along with the position rankings is a top 300 list for 2020. Click to see other preliminary 2020 rankings:

Top 300 | SP | RP | OF | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | C | DH

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2020 Relief pitcher Rankings


1Edwin DiazMets13
2Roberto OsunaAstros31
3Josh HaderBrewers84
4Craig KimbrelCubs69
5Kenley JansenDodgers*56
6Felipe VazquezPirates47
7Aroldis ChapmanYankees75
8Brad HandIndians98
9Blake TreinenAthletics216
10Kirby YatesPadres112
11Sean DoolittleNationals*1510
12Ken GilesBlue Jays1812
13Raisel IglesiasReds1311
14Jose LeclercRangers1037
15Wade DavisRockies1715
16Alex ColomeWhite Sox1414
17Will Smith 2018
18Pedro Strop 2940
19Reyes MorontaGiants4430
20Jose AlvaradoRays2220
21Hector NerisPhillies4917
22Ryan PresslyAstros2321
23David RobertsonPhillies1239
24Shane GreeneTigers4323
25Luke JacksonBraves35526
26Joe JimenezTigers3738
27Hansel RoblesAngels21024
28Dellin Betances 34NR
29Archie BradleyDiamondbacks3849
30Greg Holland 3222
31Taylor RogersTwins5725
32Diego CastilloRays2729
33Trevor MayTwins2442
34Hunter StricklandMariners1933
35Will Harris 7373
36Emilio PaganRays8635
37Kelvin HerreraWhite Sox4857
38Blake ParkerTwins4144
39Ty ButtreyAngels5941
40Matt BarnesRed Sox2545
41Corbin BurnesBrewers41 SP155 SP
42Sean NewcombBraves107 SP48
43Shawn KelleyRangers*18434
44Lou TrivinoAthletics4667
45Giovanny GallegosCardinals23353
46Andres MunozPadres385NR
47Scott ObergRockies10676
48Steve Cishek 5355
49Seth LugoMets84 SP54
50A.J. MinterBraves2647
51Sam DysonGiants11050
52Junior FernandezCardinalsNRNR
53Michael LorenzenReds207 SP56
54Brandon WorkmanRed Sox14936
55Adam OttavinoYankees7452
56Sergio Romo 3527
57Liam HendriksAthletics13631
58Ryne StanekRays5272
59Yoan LopezDiamondbacks213NR
60Justin AndersonAngels8160
61Nick AndersonMarlins17665
62Brandon Morrow 36NR
63Mychal GivensOrioles3951
64Ian KennedyRoyals192 SP32
65Hector Rondon 6370
66Joakim SoriaAthletics7866
67Corey KnebelBrewers31NR
68John GantCardinals168 SP28
69Michel BaezPadresNRNR
70Amir GarrettReds5859
71Cody Allen 21NR
72Carl Edwards Jr.Cubs70NR
73Keynan MiddletonAngels224NR
74Robert StephensonReds250 SPNR
75Arodys Vizcaino 33NR


  • There just isn’t much in the way of sure things here. The top 11 seems solid enough, but the best relievers after that could open next year as setup men, depending on how things shake out. Ken Giles might be traded to a team like the Yankees or Dodgers in the next couple of weeks. Will Smith will be pursued heavily as both a closer and an expensive setup man as a free agent. Reyes Moronta might take a backseat to a veteran in San Francisco once Smith exits.
  • The rather weak field in free agency would seem to make it more likely that Pedro Strop will get a closer’s gig somewhere. Dellin Betances might also want to go someplace that he can save games, and there will be plenty of teams looking to grab him if he’s able to get healthy down the stretch this year. Will Harris is another guy who could sneak into a ninth-inning job. He’s drifted back and forth between high- and low-leverage situations for Houston the last two years, but he’s almost always been effective. His ERA the last five years stands at 2.50.
  • There’s a case for Yoan Lopez as the high Diamondback on this list, but I still think Archie Bradley will shake off this year-long funk he’s been in and reemerge as the team’s best reliever. Lopez seems immune to giving up non-home run base hits this year, but Bradley still has the better peripherals of the two.