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While holds are even tougher to predict than saves, the players we’ll highlight today include some elite setup men to target off the waiver wire in Week 1 and the start of the baseball season.

Bottom line: the more likely an MLB team is to win, the more likely these pitchers will be eligible to earn the holds that could be the difference between winning or losing in your fantasy league.

Let's get to it.

Editor's Note: Stay on top of our MLB off-season news and fantasy analysis all year round. Read our daily fantasy columns about MLB prospects, dynasty outlooks, player outlooks and much more. It's always fantasy baseball season here. Let's Go!

 

Week 1 Waiver Wire RP Pickups for Holds

Craig Stammen, San Diego Padres

2017: 11 Holds, 3.14 ERA, 80.1 IP, 74 K, 1.20 WHIP

Early in the 2018 season, Craig Stammen has seen a consistent presence in the seventh inning for the San Diego Padres. Stammen is a sinker, slider-based pitcher. Leaning on his sinker 47.2 percent of the time; Stammen induced ground balls on 51.6 percent of batted balls. Stammen does not throw hard, averaging 91 mph on his sinker and relies on weak contact. The Padres have counted on the 34-year-old to bridge leads in the seventh inning but he will not have a high strikeout rate. Stammen is a worthwhile pickup if your other pitchers are a strong source for strikeouts.

Justin Grimm, Kansas City Royals

2017: 1 Save, 4 Holds, 5.53 ERA, 55.1 IP, 59 K, 1.34 WHIP

Justin Grimm had a difficult 2017 with the Chicago Cubs but he has a chance at redemption with the Kansas City Royals. With the Royals, Grimm has secured two holds in the first week of the season. Utilizing a 92.7 mph fastball and 80.0 mph curveball, Grimm is capable of striking out around a batter per inning. With his proven success in the past, Grimm will be a stable presence for a rebuilding Royals team. He will continue being a regular candidate for holds this season.

Matt Albers, Milwaukee Brewers

2017: 2 Saves, 14 Holds, 1.62 ERA, 61.0 IP, 63 K, 0.85 WHIP

After a successful 2017, Matt Albers has found himself on another hopeful contender in the Milwaukee Brewers. Leaning on his 93.3 mph sinker, Albers generated ground balls on 51.0 percent of batted balls last year. In the early parts of the 2018 season, he has been used in the eighth inning regularly. His statistics encourage a likelihood that he will be a steady presence for holds. He minimizes the runners on base and can average a strikeout per inning. Albers will be strong bridge to closer Corey Knebel during the 2018 season.

Chris Martin, Texas Rangers

2015: 1 Save, 5 Holds, 5.66 ERA, 20.2 IP, 18 K, 1.65 WHIP

Despite his last major league season being in 2015 with the New York Yankees, Chris Martin has been hard at work across the globe to get back on the right track. After two years in Japan, Martin has returned the States in a familiar path as Tony Barnette who signed with the Texas Rangers after a taste of Japan. Martin will bring a 93.9 mph fastball, 83.6 mph slider, and 90.6 mph cutter to the Rangers. The Rangers found success in Barnette and will look for the same with Martin. He has been used in various roles this year but his holds have been solid and the Rangers like what they see. Look for him to get more opportunities at holds.

Michael Feliz, Pittsburgh Pirates

2017: 2 Holds, 5.63 ERA, 48.0 IP, 70 K, 1.56 WHIP

Acquired from the Houston Astros, Michael Feliz has moved on to a team with an opportunity for him in the Pittsburgh Pirates. The power-throwing Feliz brings a 95.6 mph fastball and 85.1 mph slider that generated above average swinging strikes. Expect the 25-year-old to strike out a lot of batters in the National League. The risk that comes with his explosive stuff is some lack of control. If the reward of holds and high strikeout totals is worth the risk of a struggling appearance with walks; Feliz is an attractive waiver wire pickup as the Pirates will give him the space to iron this out and grow as a setup reliever for Felipe Rivero.

 

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