Top 20 Baseball Players

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1CF Mike Trout (LAA) CF Mike Trout (LAA)CF Mike Trout (LAA)CF Mike Trout (LAA)CF Mike Trout (LAA)CF Mike Trout (LAA)RF Mookie Betts (BOS)
2RF Mookie Betts (BOS) RF Mookie Betts (BOS)RF Mookie Betts (BOS)RF Mookie Betts (BOS)RF Mookie Betts (BOS)RF Mookie Betts (BOS)CF Mike Trout (LAA)
33B Jose Ramirez (CLE) 3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)3B Jose Ramirez (CLE)
4DH J.D. Martinez (BOS) 3B Manny Machado (SD)DH J.D. Martinez (BOS)SS Francisco Lindor (CLE)DH J.D. Martinez(BOS)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)DH J.D. Martinez
5RF Bryce Harper (PHI)RF Christian Yelich (MIL)SS Francisco Lindor (CLE)DH J.D. Martinez (BOS)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)DH J.D. Martinez (BOS)3B Alex Bregman (HOU)
6RF Aaron Judge (NYY) SS Francisco Lindor (CLE)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)3B Alex Bregman (HOU)3B Alex Bregman (HOU)SS Francisco Lindor (CLE)
7SS Francisco Lindor (CLE) DH J.D. Martinez (BOS)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)LF Juan Soto (WSH)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)SP Max Scherzer (WSH)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)
83B Manny Machado (SD)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)3B Manny Machado (SD)SS Corey Seager (LAD)

SS Francisco Lindor (CLE)

2B Jose Altuve (HOU)SP Chris Sale (BOS)
93B Alex Bregman (HOU)1B Freddie Freeman (ATL)SS Alex Bregman (HOU)1B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)1B Freddie Freeman(ATL)SP Jacob deGrom (NYM)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)
101B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)1B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)RF Christian Yelich (MIL)RF Bryce Harper (PHI)RF Christian Yelich (MIL)1B Joey Votto (CIN)RF Christian Yelich (MIL)
111B Freddie Freeman (ATL)SP Chris Sale (BOS)1B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)1B Joey Votto (CIN)3B Manny Machado3B Manny Machado (SD)SP Jacob deGrom ( NYM)
12RF Christian Yelich (MIL)SP Max Scherzer (WSH)1B Freddie Freeman (ATL)3B Kris Bryant (CHC)SP Max Scherzer (WSH)1B Paul Goldschmidt (ARI)3B Manny Machado (SD)
13SP Max Scherzer (WSH)SP Jacob deGrom (NYM)SP Chris Sale (BOS)1B Freddie Freeman (ATL)SP Jacob deGrom (NYM)1B Freddie Freeman (ATL)SP Max Scherzer (WSH)
14SP Jacob deGrom (NYM)SP Justin Verlander (HOU)SP Max Scherzer (WSH)LF Ronald Acuna (ATL)1B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)SS Javier Baez (CHC)
15SP Chris Sale (BOS)SP Blake Snell (TB)SP Jacob deGrom (NYM)3B Matt Chapman (OAK)DH Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)SS Trevor Story (COL)1B Paul Goldschmidt (STL)
162B Jose Altuve (HOU)2B Jose Altuve (HOU)2B Jose Altuve (HOU)3B Nolan Arenado (COL)2B Jose Altuve (HOU)2B Scooter Gennett (CIN)2B Jose Altuve (HOU)
171B Joey Votto (CIN)DH Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)1B Joey Votto (CIN)3B Anthony Rendon (WSH)1B Joey Votto (CIN)DH Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)3B Nolan Arenado (COL)
18DH Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)RF Aaron Judge (NYY)DH Giancarlo Stanton (NYY)3B Justin Turner (LAD)SP Chris Sale (BOS)SP Justin Verlander (HOU)1B Freddie Freeman (ATL)
19LF Juan Soto (WSH)2B Scooter Gennett (CIN)SS Trea Turner (WSH)3B Manny Machado (SD)2B Scooter Gennett (CIN)SP Chris Sale (BOS)SS Trevor Story (COL)
20SS Corey Seager (LAD)SS Trea Turner (WSH)SP Justin Verlander (HOU)3B Alex Bregman (HOU)3B Nolan Arenado (COL)RF Mitch Haniger (SEA)SP Blake Snell (TB)

Top 10 Starting Pitchers

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Chris Sale (BOS) Chris Sale (BOS)   Chris Sale (BOS) Clayton Kershaw (LAD)Max Scherzer(WSH)Max Scerzer (WSH)   Chris Sale (BOS)
2Max Scherzer (WSH)  Max Scherzer (WSH)Max Scherzer (WSH)Chris Sale (BOS)  Jacob deGrom (NYM) Jacob deGrom (NYM)  Jacob deGrom (NYM)
3Jacob deGrom (NYM)    Jacob deGrom (NYM)Jacob deGrom (NYM)Jacob deGrom (NYM)  Chris Sale (BOS)Justin Verlander (HOU)  Max Scherzer (WSH)
4Justin Verlander (HOU)Justin Verlander (HOU)  Justin Verlander (HOU)Max Scherzer (WSH)  Aaron Nola (PHI)Chris Sale (BOS)Blake Snell (TB)
5Clayton Kershaw (LAD)Blake Snell (TB)Clayton Kershaw (LAD)Justin Verlander (HOU)  Justin Verlander (HOU)Clayton Kershaw (LAD) Justin Verlander (HOU)
6Corey Kluber (CLE)Corey Kluber (CLE)Corey Kluber (CLE)  Corey Kluber (CLE)  Corey Kluber (CLE)Aaron Nola (PHI)Corey Kluber (CLE)
7Aaron Nola (PHI)Aaron Nola (PHI)Gerrit Cole (HOU)Aaron Nola (PHI)  Blake Snell (TB)Trevor Bauer (CLE)  Trevor Bauer (CLE)
8Blake Snell (TB)Gerrit Cole (HOU)  Carlos Carrasco (CLE)Luis Severino (NYY)  Trevor Bauer (CLE)Walker Buehler (LAD)Gerrit Cole (HOU)
9Trevor Bauer (CLE)Patrick Corbin (WSH)Trevor Bauer (CLE)Blake Snell (TB)  Luis Severino(NYY)Blake Snell (TB)Aaron Nola (PHI)
10Gerrit Cole (HOU)Luis Severino (NYY)    Patrick Corbin (WSH)Gerrit Cole (HOU)  Patrick Corbin (WSH)Gerrit Cole (HOU)Luis Severino (NYY)


Last year, starting pitching was headlined by a clear “big four,” but going into this season, the lines are far more blurred. Many pitchers each qualify for many different positions, and almost everyone has both some kind of question or pushback, and some kind of draw. While he’s experienced a shaky start to 2019, Chris Sale lead off our preseason ranks after finishing with a 6.97 K/BB and 1.98 FIP. Sale finished second in AL starters in WAR, despite starting seven fewer games than the leader and most of those behind him. Max Scherzer, who has modeled consistency since breaking out in 2013, ranks second. Scherzer posted a 2.53 ERA last year, which is the lowest in his past six seasons, even though his ERA fell below 3.15 in all of them. NL Cy Young winner Jacob DeGrom claims the third overall spot, as his 9.0 fWAR and 5.85 K/BB added together to form a 1.99 FIP. Number four starting pitcher Justin Verlander looks to just keep getting better, despite his 36 years of age. JV’s 12.20 K/9 and 1.56 BB/9 lead to a 2.52 2018 ERA, the lowest of his career. Corey Kluber stands as ace in a strong Indians rotation. His strikeouts were low in 2018, but so were his walks, leading to a mere 0.99 WHIP. Phillies breakout Aaron Nola ranks seventh overall. Last year, he put up a 2.37 ERA, accompanied by a 3.01 FIP. Nola is followed by another ERA breakout guy, Blake Snell, whose 1.89 mark was an incredibly encouraging sign for the Rays. Snell is followed by yet another breakout starter, and yet another Indian, Trevor Bauer. Bauer’s 2.21 ERA was backed up by a 2.44 FIP and 11.34 K/9. Astros acquisition Gerrit Cole returned to excellency last year in the form of a 2.70 FIP, 12.40 K/9, and 6.0 WAR, enough to bring him onto the list with the 10th spot. For top quality pitching mounds, check out Anytime Baseball Supply

Top 10 Middle Relievers

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Josh Hader (MIL)Dellin Betances (NYY)Josh Hader (MIL)Josh Hader (MIL)Josh Hader (MIL)Josh Hader (MIL)Josh Hader (MIL) 
2Dellin Betances (NYY)David Robertson (PHI)Dellin Betances (NYY)Dellin Betances (NYY)Andrew Miller (STL)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)  Dellin Betances (NYY)
3Andrew Miller (STL)  Andrew Miller (STL)Andrew Miller (STL)Andrew Miller (STL)Dellin Betances(NYY)Andrew Miller (STL)  Andrew Miller (STL)  
4Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)Josh Hader (MIL)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)Will Harris (HOU)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)Seranthony Dominguez (PHI)  Chad Green (NYY)  
5Seranthony Dominguez (PHI)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)Craig Stammen (SD)David Robertson (PHI)Seranthony Dominguez (PHI)Jared Hughes (CIN)Seranthony Dominguez (PHI)  
6Adam Ottavino (NYY)Craig Stammen (SD)  Seranthony Dominguez (PHI)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)Chad Green (NYY)Dellin Betances (NYY)Jeremy Jeffress (MIL)  
7David Robertson (PHI)Adam Ottavino (NYY)Will Harris (HOU)Will Smith (SF)Adam Ottavino(NYY)Chad Green (NYY)  Adam Ottavino (NYY)
8Chad Green (NYY)Pat Neshek (PHI)Adam Ottavino (NYY)Craig Stammen (SD)Will Harris (HOU)Adam Ottavino (NYY)David Robertson (PHI)
9Will Harris (HOU)Ryan Pressly (HOU)  Ryan Pressly (HOU)Adam Ottavino (NYY)Pat Neshek (PHI)Will Harris (HOU)Lou Trivino (OAK)  
10Craig Stammen (SD)Chad Green (NYY)Pat Neshek (PHI)Pat Neshek (PHI)Ryan Pressly (HOU)Ryan Pressly (HOU)  Ryan Pressly (HOU)


Even as versatile bullpens bullpens become more and more popular, relief pitching remains one of the most undervalued, but also one of the most inconsistent aspects of the game. With five out of six first place votes, Brewers breakout Josh Hader takes first place. The first of multiple Brewers on this list (and the trend of single teams dominating the list will continue), Hader punched out 15.82 batters per nine innings last season, adding up to a 2.23 FIP. Now 31 years old, Dellin Betances ranks second after his third straight season of 15 K/9, and a 1.95 xFIP in 2018. Andrew Miller comes in third after a down year last season. In the three years prior, his ERA’s read 1.44, 1.45, and 2.02. The second Brewer on the list ranks fourth, and his name is Jeremy Jeffress, who tossed 76 innings of 1.29 ERA ball last year. Seranthony Dominguez may get some saves this season, but since the Phillies have not yet named one closer, he sits at #5 on this list. Dominguez broke out in 2018 with 11.49 K/9 and an ERA just under 3.00. Another Yankee, (this time a new one), Adam Ottavino, takes the sixth spot. He managed to put up a 2.43 ERA last season in Coors, largely thanks to strong strikeout and ground ball numbers. David Robertson falls two spots below his fellow Philly after making 2018 his eighth straight season with at least 60 innings pitched an 10.4 K/9. Chad Green, the third Yankee on this list (and fourth if you count Chapman from the closers list), comes next. Unlike many of the pitchers around him, Green was able to limit walks while still obtaining K’s, leaving him with a 6.27 K/BB ratio. Houston reliever Will Harris edges out Ryan Pressly to become the only Houston reliever to make the conglomerate chart. Harris wrapped up 2018 with a 2.44 FIP and 4.57 K/BB. San Diego vet Craig Stammen wraps up the top 10, completing last season with a 2.19 FIP and only 1.94 BB/9 in 79 innings pitched. 

Top 10 Catchers

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Gary Sanchez (NYY) Gary Sanchez (NYY) Gary Sanchez (NYY)Yasmani Grandal (MIL)J.T Realmuto (PHI)J.T. Realmuto (PHI)J.T. Realmuto (PHI)
2J.T. Realmuto (PHI) J.T. Realmuto (PHI)J.T. Realmuto (PHI)Gary Sanchez (NYY)Gary Sanchez (NYY)Gary Sanchez (NYY)Gary Sanchez (NYY)
3Yasmani Grandal (MIL) Wilson Ramos (NYM)Yasmani Grandal (MIL)J.T. Realmuto (PHI)Yasmani Grandal (MIL)Wilson Ramos (NYM)Yasmani Grandal (MIL)
4Wilson Ramos (NYM) Yasmani Grandal (MIL)Wilson Ramos (NYM)Buster Posey (SF)Wilson Ramos (NYM)Yasmani Grandal (MIL)Wilson Ramos (NYM)
5Buster Posey (SF)Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Buster Posey (SF)Willson Contreras (CHC)Buster Posey (SF)Yadier Molina (STL)Yadier Molina (STL)
6Willson Contreras (CHC) Jorge Alfaro (MIA) Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Yadier Molina (STL)Willson Contreras (CHC)Buster Posey (SF)Willson Contreras (CHC)
7Yadier Molina (STL) Willson Contreras (CHC)Willson Contreras (CHC)Wilson Ramos (NYM)Yadier Molina (STL)Willson Contreras (CHC)Buster Posey (SF)
8 Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Yadier Molina (STL) Yadier Molina (STL)Austin Barnes (LAD)Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Francisco Cervelli (PIT)
9Austin Barnes (LAD)  Buster Posey (SF)Yan Gomes (WSH)Francisco Cervelli (PIT)Austin Barnes (LAD)Austin Barnes (LAD)Salvador Perez (KC)
10Jorge Alfaro (MIA)  Kurt Suzuki (WSH)Kurt Suzuki (WSH)Yan Gomes (WSH)Salvador Perez (KC)Salvador Perez (KC)Austin Barnes (LAD)


On an annual basis, catcher is perhaps both the hardest, and the most fun position to rank. The overall offensive weakness, but also the defensive complexity of the position both contribute position two’s uniqueness. Along with the usual Fangraphs and Baseball Reference, Baseball Prospectus and Baseball Savant deserve special shoutouts here for helping to quantify defensive catching metrics. There was heavy controversy among the writers as to who deserved the top spot, but Yankee’s backstop Gary Sanchez won out. Sanchez didn’t even bat the Mendoza line in his shortened 2018, but he did carry a .197 BABIP, 12.3% BB%, and 18 home runs in 89 games, along with a powerful throwing arm. New Phillies’ acquisition J.T. Realmuto claims the second overall spot after putting up 4.8 WAR in 2018 and leading the league in pop time. New Brewer Yasmani Grandal, ranked third overall, was worth 4.9 WAR last season, in part due to his .349 OBP. Grandal may go down as the best pitch framer in history, as he was worth 16.3 framing runs last season. Grandal is followed by yet another player new to his 2019 roster, Wilson Ramos, who is just joining the Mets. Ramos has had his share of health issues, but he hit .308 in 111 games last season, good for 131 wRC+. Ramos, however, is followed by a player far from new to his team, Buster Posey. Posey’s decline has seemed imminent over the past few seasons, but he still put up a .359 OBP last year between catcher and first. The young Willson Contreras follows Posey, and while his offense was merely average last year, he hopes to rebound to his rookie and sophomore numbers in 2019, when he was worth 126 and 122 wRC+, respectively. Another veteran, Yadier Molina, ranks seventh. Molina nearly set a career high in power last year, with 20 home runs in only 123 games, and was worth over 2.0 WAR for the eleventh straight year in his career. His division rival, Francisco Cervelli, Cervelli’s .259/.378/.431 batting line last season helped him reach 2.6 WAR despite below average defense. #9 catcher Austin Barnes will step into the primary role as Dodgers’ catcher this season, and while his offense ranked below average last season, he was the best catcher in baseball in 2017 on a per at bat basis (142 wRC+, 3.7 WAR in 102 at bats). Finally, thanks solely to Mike’s extreme optimism, Jorge Alfaro made the charts at the tenth position. Alfaro was actually worth 3.1 wins last season, thanks to good pitch framing, and a great arm, with a pop time of just 1.94 seconds. 

Top 10 Closers

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Edwin Diaz (NYM)   Edwin Diaz (NYM)Edwin Diaz (NYM)Kenley Jansen (LAD) Kenley Jansen (LAD) Blake Treinen (OAK)  Edwin Diaz (NYM)
2Blake Treinen (OAK)   Blake Treinen (OAK)Kenley Jansen (LAD)Edwin Diaz (NYM)Edwin Diaz (NYM)Edwin Diaz (NYM)  Blake Treinen (OAK)
3Kenley Jansen (LAD)Aroldis Chapman (NYY)Blake Treinen (OAK)Blake Treinen (OAK)Craig Kimbrel (FA)Craig Kimbrel (FA) Aroldis Chapman (NYY)
4Aroldis Chapman (NYY) Kenley Jansen (LAD)  Aroldis Chapman (NYY)Craig Kimbrel (FA)Aroldis Chapman (NYY)Aroldis Chapman (NYY)   Kenley Jansen (LAD)
5Craig Kimbrel (FA) Corey Knebel (MIL)Corey Knebel (MIL)Sean Doolittle (WSH)Blake Treinen (OAK)Felipe Vazquez (PIT)  Craig Kimbrel (FA)
6Sean Doolittle (WSH)   Sean Doolittle (WSH)Craig Kimbrel (FA)Aroldis Chapman (NYY)Corey Knebel (MIL)Kenley Jansen (LAD)Corey Knebel (MIL)
7Corey Knebel (MIL) Brad Hand (CLE)Sean Doolittle (WSH)Roberto Osuna (HOU)Roberto Osuna (HOU)Sean Doolittle (WSH)   Brad Hand (CLE)
8Roberto Osuna (HOU) Roberto Osuna (HOU)Roberto Osuna (HOU)Felipe Vazquez (PIT)Sean Doolittle (WSH)Brad Hand (CLE)  Sean Doolittle (WSH)
9Felipe Vazquez (PIT) Craig Kimbrel (FA)Jose LeClerc (TEX)Corey Knebel (MIL)Felipe Vazquez (PIT)Roberto Osuna (HOU)Roberto Osuna (HOU)
10Brad Hand (CLE) Felipe Vazquez (PIT)Felipe Vazquez (PIT)Jose LeClerc (TEX)Brad Hand (CLE)Jose LeClerc (TEX)Felipe Vazquez (PIT)




Closers are often the most existing baseball players to watch, and they often exhibit some of the nastiest pure stuff in the game. Edwin Diaz, just traded from the Mariners to the Mets this past offseason, takes the top spot. Diaz displayed 15.22 K/9 last season and a 1.78 xFIP last season, leading to 3.5 WAR as a relief pitcher. Blake Treinen broke out at age 30 last year in the form of a 0.87 earned run average. He put up 3.6 total WAR. #3 closer Kenley Jansen actually took a step back last season, but in the five years before that, his FIPs read 1.31, 1.44, 2.14, 1.91, and 1.99. Velocity machine Aroldis Chapman places fourth overall, with an astounding 16.31 K/9 mark, and a 2.09 FIP. Craig Kimbrel still doesn’t have a team, but word is that he’s lowering his asking price, so once he signs and prepares for the season he could be ready to live up to his #5 preseason rank. Kimbrel put 13.86 K/9 in 2018, albeit with some lost control. He’s only a year removed, though, from one of the greatest closer years all time, when he struck out 16.43 per nine innings while walking only 1.83. Underrated Nationals arm Sean Doolittle places sixth, with a 1.89 2018 FIP and exactly 10.00 K/BB. Despite a questionable mid-season demotion, Corey Knebel experienced his third straight season of 14 K/9 last year. He also put up a 2.40 xFIP, enough to land seventh. Roberto Osuna places eighth overall. He had serious off-the-field issues last season, but still walked less than a batter per game when playing, good for a 2.37 ERA. Filipe Vazquez places an the ninth best closer in baseball. A 2.43 FIP led him to 2.1 total WAR. Finally, Brad Hand was traded to the Indians at the deadline, and he helped to solidify an otherwise shaky bullpen, topping 4 K/BB.

Top 10 Right Fielders

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Mookie Betts (BOS) Mookie Betts (BOS)Mookie Betts (BOS)Mookie Betts (BOS)

Mookie Betts (BOS)

Mookie Betts (BOS) Mookie Betts (BOS)
2Aaron Judge (NYY)Christian Yelich (MIL)Aaron Judge (NYY)Aaron Judge (NYY)Bryce Harper (PHI)Bryce Harper (PHI)Christian Yelich (MIL)
3Bryce Harper (PHI)Aaron Judge (NYY)Bryce Harper (PHI)Bryce Harper (PHI)Aaron Judge (NYY)Aaron Judge (NYY) Aaron Judge (NYY)
4Christian Yelich (MIL)Bryce Harper (PHI) Christian Yelich (MIL)Christian Yelich (MIL)Christian Yelich (MIL)Mitch Haniger (SEA)Bryce Harper (PHI) 
5Cody Bellinger (LAD) Cody Bellinger (LAD) Cody Bellinger (LAD)Brandon Nimmo (NYM)Mitch Haniger (SEA)Brandon Nimmo (NYM)Cody Bellinger (LAD)
6Mitch Haniger (SEA) Mitch Haniger (SEA)Mitch Haniger (SEA)Cody Bellinger (LAD)Cody Bellinger(LAD)Christian Yelich (MIL) Mitch Haniger (SEA)
7Brandon Nimmo (NYM)Nick Markakis (ATL) Brandon Nimmo (NYM)Mitch Haniger (SEA)Brandon Nimmo (NYM)Cody Bellinger (LAD)Nicholas Castellanos (DET) 
8Yasiel Puig (CIN) Yasiel Puig (CIN)Nicholas Castellanos (DET)Yasiel Puig (CIN)Nicholas Castellano (DET)Nicholas Castellanos (DET)Brandon Nimmo (NYM)
9Nicholas Castellanos (DET)Adam Eaton (WSH)Yasiel Puig (CIN)Adam Eaton (WSH)Yasiel Puig (CIN)Yasiel Puig (CIN) Yasiel Puig (CIN)
10Adam Eaton (WSH)Brandon Nimmo (NYM)  Adam Eaton (WSH)Jesse Winker (CIN)Adam Eaton (WSH) Nick Markakis (ATL)Shin-Soo Choo (TEX)



A claim that right field is the best position in baseball would not be hard to defend. The position is ripe with superstars at the top, and shows strong depth at the end. Despite the competition, Mookie Betts was chosen unanimously for the top spot. Had it not been for Mike Trout, he would have won MVP last season for his 10.4 WAR, which comes from a .346 BA, 185 wRC+, and 33/30 power/speed total, and 20 DRS. Mookie’s rival Aaron Judge snags the second overall spot with his power and eye. He continued his 2017 success last year with 27 home runs and a .392 OBP in only 112 games. Recent Phillies’ super-acquisition Bryce Harper comes in third. While defensive woes have hurt his holistic numbers, he still had a .393 OBP last year, just above his career .389 mark. The season before that he slugged almost .600 too. In a testament to the overall strength of the position, reigning NL MVP Christian Yelich falls to fourth, after being worth 7.6 WAR last season. Critics point to a likely unsustainable BABIP and fly ball rate, but his OPS of exactly 1.000, complementing his 22 stolen bases, tell a very strong story. Dodgers’ batter Cody Bellinger shattered NL rookie power records two seasons ago, but took a slight hit last year. He was still worth 3.6 WAR and 120 wRC+, though. Mitch Haniger broke out with the Mariners in 2018, with 138 wRC+ and 4.6 WAR in his first full season in the majors. If he can become more consistent on a month-to-month basis, he could join the “most underrated players” list next year. Speaking of underrated talent, Brandon Nimmo is far from a household name, but the seventh best overall right fielder had 149 wRC+ in 2018, mostly due to 15.0% walk rate and .404 OBP. After six up and down seasons with the Dodgers, Yasiel Puig was traded to Reds over the offseason. In Cincinnati, he probably hopes to get close to his 2017 numbers, where breakout defense and good offense and baserunning fed into a 2.9 WAR. Tigers’ asset Nicholas Castellanos comes in ninth, scoring at 130 for wRC+ and putting up 3.0 WAR, albeit with a .361 BABIP. Lastly, rebound candidate Adam Eaton hopes to help the Harper-less Nationals keep pace in 2019. He’s missed the majority of the last two seasons due to injury, but hit .301 in the at bats he did make, and has been worth up to 5.9 WAR per season in the past. 

Top 10 Center Fielders

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Mike Trout (LAA)  Mike Trout (LAA)Mike Trout (LAA)Mike Trout (LAA)Mike Trout (LAA)Mike Trout (LAA) Mike Trout (LAA)
2Lorenzo Cain (MIL) Lorenzo Cain (MIL) Lorenzo Cain (MIL)Lorenzo Cain (MIL)Lorenzo Cain (MIL)Aaron Hicks (NYY)Lorenzo Cain (MIL)
3George Springer (HOU) George Springer (HOU) George Springer (HOU)Aaron Hicks (NYY)Aaron Hicks (NYY)George Springer (HOU) George Springer (HOU)
4Aaron Hicks (NYY) Charlie Blackmon( COL) Aaron Hicks (NYY)George Springer (HOU)George Springer(HOU)Charlie Blackmon ( COL)Starling Marte (PIT)
5Charlie Blackmon (COL) Aaron Hicks (NYY) Starling Marte (PIT)Starling Marte (PIT)Charlie Blackmon (COL)Starling Marte (PIT)Charlie Blackmon (COL)
6Starling Marte (PIT) A.J. Pollock (LAD) Kevin Kiermaier (TB)Charlie Blackmon (COL)Starling Marte (PIT)Lorenzo Cain (MIL) Aaron Hicks (NYY)
7A.J. Pollock (LAD) Ender Inciarte (ATL)A.J. Pollock (LAD)A.J. Pollock (LAD)A.J. Pollock (LAD)A.J. Polluck (LAD)A.J. Pollock (LAD)
8Ender Inciarte (ATL) Mallex Smith (SEA) Charlie Blackmon (COL)Jackie Bradley Jr. (BOS)Ender Inciarte (ATL)Ender Inciarte (ATL)Mallex Smith (SEA)
9Mallex Smith (SEA) Jackie Bradley Jr. (BOS) Ender Inciarte (ATL)Ender Inciarte (ATL)Jackie Bradley Jr. (BOS)Mallex Smith (SEA)Ender Inciarte (ATL)
10Jackie Bradley Jr. (BOS) Kevin Kiermaier (TB)Mallex Smith (SEA)Harrison Bader (STL)Mallex Smith (SEA)Kevin Kiermaier (TB)


Jackie Bradley Jr. (BOS)


Center field has become a mix of the continuation of the tradition of the defense-first field commander, and the 5-tool powerhouse. Not much has to be said about unanimous #1 pick Mike Trout, as any half decent baseball fan knows enough about him, but it would be safe to say that he would be a Hall of Famer if he retired today, and he may have just had the best season of his career. As hard as it is to follow up Trout, Lorenzo Cain does a pretty good job. His 5.7 WAR, propelled by 20 DRS, set a career high, and made his $80 Million contract a worthy investment for the Brewers. George Springer is a core component of an Astros team that’s trying to make themselves a dynasty. He had a down season in 2018 but still put up 2.9 WAR, and hopes looks to rebound to his 140 wRC+ days of the year before. Aaron Hicks continues to fly under the radar as one of the most underrated players in baseball, staying in the shadow of other star Yankee outfielders despite his 7 year extension from this preseason. The five-tooled Hicks was worth 4.9 WAR last year despite a .264 BABIP, and he put up a 3.3 total in only 88 games the year before that. Charlie Blackmon put together an MVP-level campaign in 2017, but fell off a little last season, albeit still hitting 29 homers for 2.9 WAR last year in Coors. As bad as Blackmon’s problems were last season, Starling Marte had it worse two years ago, being suspended 80 games for a positive PED test. Marte, however, rebounded in a full season last year with a 20/33 season and 3.7 wins above replacement. A.J. Pollock has also had trouble staying on the field, in his case for health reasons. The Dodgers took a $60 Million dollar chance on him over the offseason, hoping he can replicate some of the numbers he’s put up in full seasons in the past, including his 6.8 WAR 2015. Ender Inciarte and his incredible has paid dividends to the Braves for a few years now. Last year, he totaled 17 DRS. New Mariners center fielder Mallex Smith comes in ninth on the list after a great 2018, when he stole 40 bases and posted a .367 OBP with 3.4 WAR. Finally, the inconsistent enigma of Jackie Bradley Jr. ranks tenth. He hit only .234 last year, but still was worth 2.8 WAR, and if he can expand one of his extreme hot streaks to a seasonal scale, he could easily jump into consideration for a very high spot next year. 


Top 10 Left Fielders

 The K Zone Overall RankingMike’s RankingIan’s RankingMojo’s RankingMaddie’s RankingJack’s RankingAaron’s Ranking
1Ronald Acuña (ATL)  Ronald Acuna (ATL)Ronald Acuna (ATL)Juan Soto (WSH)Ronald Acuna (ATL)Ronald Acuna (ATL) Juan Soto (WSH)
2Juan Soto (WSH)  Juan Soto (WSH)Juan Soto (WSH)Ronald Acuna (ATL)Juan Soto (WSH)Juan Soto (WSH) Andrew Benintendi (BOS)
3Andrew Benintendi (BOS)  Andrew Benintendi (BOS)Andrew Benintendi (BOS)Michael Conforto (NYM)Andrew Benentendi (BOS(Andrew Benentendi (BOS)Ronald Acuna (ATL)
4Tommy Pham (TB) Tommy Pham (TB) Tommy Pham (TB)Tommy Pham (TB)Andrew McCutchen (PHI)Tommy Pham (TB) Tommy Pham (TB)
5Michael Conforto (NYM) Michael Brantley (CLE) Andrew McCuthen (PHI)Andrew Benintendi (BOS)Tommy Pham (TB)Michael Brantley (CLE) Michael Brantley (CLE)
6Michael Brantley (HOU) Andrew McCuthen (PHI)Michael Brantley (CLE)Kyle Schwarber (CHC)Michael Brantley (CLE)Andrew McCutchen (PHI)Michael Conforto (NYM)
7Andrew McCutchen (PHI) Michael Conforto (NYM)Michael Conforto (NYM)Andrew McCutchen (PHI)Michael Conforto(NYM)David Peralta (ARI) David Peralta (ARI)
8David Peralta (ARI) Justin Upton (LAA)David Peralta (ARI)Michael Brantley (HOU)David Peralta (ARI)Marcell Ozuna (STL)Justin Upton (LAA)
9Justin Upton (LAA) David Peralta (ARI) Justin Upton (LAA)Justin Upton (LAA)Marcell Ozuna (STL)Justin Upton (LAA) Marcell Ozuna (STL)
10Kyle Schwarber (CHC) David Dahl (COL)  Kyle Schwarber (CHC)David Peralta (ARI)Kyle Schwarber (CHC)Kyle Schwarber (CHC)Eddie Rosario (MIN)


Left field saw two prominent additions mid way through 2018. Rookie of the Year Ronald Acuna Jr. had 143 wRC+ in 111 games last year, complimented by a power speed combo to the tune of 26 home runs and 16 steals. His runner up, Juan Soto, also smashed already high expectations putting up a .406 OBP with 22 home runs in just 116 games of his own. The group was joined by sophomore (now junior) Red Sox outfield Andrew Benintendi, whose solid .290/.366/.465 line with 4.4 WAR helped lead his team to a world series victory. Tommy Pham has broken onto the scene ever since his now famous corrective eye surgery. A rough first half led him to be dealt to Tampa Bay, but he excelled at the Trop, with a massive 191 wRC+ and 2.5 WAR in only 39 games after the trade. Michael Conforto has a high ceiling, but has had trouble staying healthy enough to realize it. 2018 was his first full year, and despite a low batting average, he carried a .350 OBP with a very respectable 28 home runs. Michael Brantley is a long ways off from his 2014 MVP campaign, but he did manage a hardy 3.5 WAR with Cleveland before signing with the Astros int the offseason. The same goes for Andrew McCutchen, the #7 left field, who despite being far removed from his MVP days remains one of the most consistent hitters on the field. The new Philly had a .368 OBP last year, a number that has only dipped below .360 once in his career, and he continues to put up enough power to total 120 wRC+. David Peralta comes in next. His unforeseen power breakout last year helped him produce 3.8 WAR, as he hopes to continue the surge into the coming season. Veteran outfielder Justin Upton continues to hit for pop (30 home runs) and run for speed (8 stolen bases). His 2018 did not come close to 5.2 WAR performance the year before, but Upton has not played fewer than 149 games since 2009, so the Angels can expect strong output from him no matter what. Finally, young Cub Kyle Schwarber rounds out the rankings. Schwarber had a Votto-esque 15.3% walk rate last season and hit 26 home runs in only 137 games, a number that should continue to grow as he matures. 

Top 10 Players At Each Position

Every year, The K Zone engages in our tradition of ranking the top 10 players at each position. If you want to embarrass us, you can look at our charts from before the 2018 and 2017 years. Rankings, made during the preseason, are based on our projections for the coming season, so the following are our predictions for who will finish as a top 10 player at each position, and how high they will fall among the top 10 in 2019:

Top 10 Starting Pitchers
Top 10 Middle Relievers
Top 10 Closers
Top 10 Right Fielders
Top 10 Center Fielders
Top 10 Left Fielders
Top 10 Third Basemen
Top 10 Shortstops
Top 10 Second Basemen
Top 10 First Basemen and Designated Hitters
Top 10 Catchers

And of course, the Top 20 Overall Baseball Players

Image attributed to Sports Illustrated. Cited statistics in all articles are from Fangraphs, Baseball Reference, Baseball Savant, and Baseball Prospectus.