2011 Holds Rankings: September by Mike Axisa September 6, 2011 Last week we put together our final set of closer rankings for the 2011 season, and now it’s time to do the same for the guys handing them the ball. Here is August’s holds ranking, and here is the holds leaderboard for reference. Tier One Tyler Clippard Daniel Bard Jonny Venters David Robertson Mike Adams Sean Marshall Aroldis Chapman Robertson and Marshall jump into the top tier just because they’ve been so brutally effective, plus it helps that the former has kept the eighth inning job in New York despite Rafael Soriano’s return from injury. Rafael Betancourt occupied this tier last month, but now he’s closing games for the Rockies. Tier Two Antonio Bastardo Sergio Romo Glen Perkins David Hernandez Koji Uehara Francisco Rodriguez Jose Veras Grant Balfour Takashi Saito Uehara (and Adams, for that matter) have stumbled a bit since moving to Texas, but I don’t see any reason to think it’s anything more than a blip on the radar. Saito’s a perpetual injury risk, but what reliever isn’t? Tier Three Vinnie Pestano Eric O’Flaherty Rafael Soriano Joaquin Benoit Tony Sipp Scott Downs Jesse Crain Chris Sale Jim Johnson Kerry Wood Joel Peralta Kameron Loe Johnson isn’t really working straight setup innings anymore, the Orioles are talking about moving him into the rotation next year and most of his recent outings have been longer, multiple inning stints to get stretched out. It’s kinda weird and unpredictable. Soriano’s been much better since coming off the DL, but he’s still prone to the long ball (especially in his home park) and isn’t the top setup dog in his own pen. Tier Four Matt Thornton Bobby Parnell Matt Reynolds Fernando Rodney Luke Gregerson Matt Lindstrom Javier Lopez Darren Oliver Jeremy Affeldt Jamey Wright Chad Qualls Hong-Chih Kuo Parnell is … quite unpredictable. The Mets are practically begging him to take over their closer’s job, but he seems to keep hitting a speed bump. Hurt/In The Minors Randy Choate Kenley Jansen Eduardo Sanchez Joba Chamberlain Evan Meek Jose Contreras There’s a non-zero chance that Sanchez will be back before the end of the season, but the others are as good as done for 2011.