Please see our player page for C.J. Cron to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

So, went from the brutal cold of Los Angeles to the unseasonably warm NYC to take on the ‘perts of fantasy baseball in Tout Wars. As most of you, they have a bunch of leagues drafting over the weekend. Mine happens to be NL-Only, and happens on Sunday, so, after having Harold Dieterle, former Top Chef winner, on the podcast a few times, Geoff and I finally got to go out to dinner with him on Saturday night. He took us to one of New York’s most renown restaurants:

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Welcome back to week three of unveiling the top 100 Hitters for the 2023 fantasy baseball season.  Over the past few weeks, we have walked through the top 25 (check it here) and then rounded out the top 50 (another link) bringing us to this week.  We are now entering the back half of the top 100 hitters for 2023.  This portion is where the rankings start to bunch up and hitter #51 is much closer to hitter #75 than #1 is to #2.  Maybe that is stating the obvious but it is key for how we handle this portion of the draft.  With this group of hitters, we start to think about need, team makeup, and shortfalls in our categories to ensure we have a well balanced team rather than trying to win a single roto category by lapping the field.  We all know the guy that drafts only steals or seven closers, so do not be that person!  With the formalities out of the way, let us get on with the rankings.

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If you are starting a team in a new dynasty league, take a look at the position breakdown of the top 200 players, using the main position for utility players except for one, who plays basically any position in the field.

What quickly jumps out is the lack of depth at second base and third base. The second and third base positions alone add up to only one more Top 100 player than the shortstop position. There are some great players at those two positions, but the overall quality lacks compared to shortstop or first base.

When it comes to catchers and relief pitchers, I can tell you right now that there are few of them ranked. There are a lot of good catchers, but many of them will get only 110 or so starts or they are getting up in age, making them less than desired dynasty options.

As for the relivers, I never chase saves (or holds if your league has them). How many players dread chasing Aroldis Chapman last year or a host of other top closers? Meanwhile, five new closer will come out the woodwork this year that you can get in the middle of the season.

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Are the top 20 1st basemen for 2023 fantasy baseball good? How do you define good? Is good definable? Are you Plato? What is a Plato? Any hoo! This post goes on for about 1.8 million words, so let’s dive in. Here’s Steamer’s 2023 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2023 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. The projections noted in this post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop. Subscriptions are up and running, and you can already get Rudy’s Draft War Room. Anyway, here’s the top 20 1st basemen for 2023 fantasy baseball:

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The start of the 2023 baseball season is just weeks away, but here at Razzball it is always baseball season. To get you ready to go for the upcoming year, here is the first installment of the 2023 Dynasty Rankings.

When it comes to dynasty rankings, you have to look at a little of this, some of that, and can’t forget about the other. You want a team that can contend for years, so do you look only at age? If you do that, it may compromise your team’s performance?

When evaluating players for dynasty leagues, the formula for success thus consists of many factors. It’s a dash of gut instinct mixed in with past experience and a whole lot of what the eye sees. You know a good player when you see him. But you can’t just go with the best player on the board.

The Rules (or at least guidelines)

That said, there are some basic rules I try to follow as much as possible:

Young over old
I’m always thinking five years down the road. Justin Verlander is great to have on your team this year, but what about next year and certainly in 2024? You will need veteran players, but you don’t want a whole team of veteran players.
Hitter over Pitcher
Since the introduction of the Rookie of the Year Award in 1947, 113 hitters have been awarded the Rookie of the Year compared to 39 pitchers. In this century alone, 33 hitters have been named ROY to 13 pitchers. Young hitters perform better than young pitchers, and veteran hitters are more consistent than veteran pitchers.
Starting Pitcher over Reliever
This is pretty easy to understand why. For the most part, you know what you are going to get from starters. As a group, relievers are so up-and-down it is maddening. Need an example? Aroldis Chapman. Need another? Josh Hader.
But, what about…

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I’m not sure what has gotten into general managers, but they are making trades like it is the midseason deadline and free agents are already coming off the board.

This action has me so excited, I can’t wait to get into this week’s 2023 Top Keepers – First Basemen edition.

What Kind of First Baseman Do You Want?

Today’s first basemen are all over the board. Some fall into the category of the traditional first baseman – the dudes who hit with power but didn’t do too much more at the plate. You also have your high average, high OBP first basemen who didn’t hit for a lot of power. And there are the few that do it all – or at least get close to doing it all.

Then you have your utility first basemen. Today’s game features plenty of first basemen who also play two to three other positions. We have second baseman who are playing first, or first basemen playing in the outfield or third base.

Because of this versatility, the position is no longer the home of just sluggers. You have to pick a first baseman to keep who best fills your specific needs because the complete first baseman – a run producing power hitter who hits for average and gets on base, are a rare breed.

So let’s dive in and get to the rankings.

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Today’s journey through the recaps take us to the 1st basemen. They’re better than the top 20 catchers for 2022 fantasy baseball (not clickbait at all), but by how much? How do I explain that? I have an idea! By recapping them! To recap my recap before the recap, this final ranking is from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater with my comments. This is not for next year. Hayzeus Cristo, just enjoy a recap before we get into next year. Anyway, here’s the top 20 1st basemen for 2022 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

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Jerry Tomato Realmuto (5-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 20th homer, hitting .278) is leading the pack for catchers once again on the Player Rater. Jerry Tomato, just sitting on the top of the heap, telling everyone to ketchup. The cream of the crap hasn’t smelled this bad in a while. Salvador Perez flew so close to the sun last year, that Sal Icarus made us forgot what good catchers are actually capable of when they’re being nice, good little catchers. J.T. Realmuto reminding us that 20-something homers and a .275 average is all you can hope for. Ha, that sounds so nihilistic. German accent, “Das nein else to hope for. Das boot catchers. Excuse me, not boot, how do you say in English das punt. Yes, dat one.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Frequent commenter, PK, said the other day, “We have Hunter Greene, and now Hunter Brown in the big leagues. Just need a Hunter Orange to complete the redneck trifecta!” And I haven’t stopped thinking about that, so now you also have to think about it. Hey, PK, save the genius stuff for me! Or, Hunter Brown (6 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, 1 walk, 5 Ks), as was the case yesterday in his MLB debut. At some point, the Astros have to stop creating top flight arms, don’t they? Wait a second! You know how the A’s went from attracting fans with OBP to allowing fans to have sex in the bleachers (sorta true, google it, if you don’t believe me), from Moneyball to NoMoneyball to Hornyball. Maybe the Astros are going from the Cheaty Cheaty Bang Bang Scandal to some other scandal we don’t know about yet that turns guys like Framber into aces. Mentioned this on the podcast the other day, which is on Youtube, and will be out on our regular podcast channel today, when discussing Hunter Brown. Astros get so much more from their starters than anyone expects. Why? Is something suspicious going on? Sorry, cheat once and I always think you’re cheating. With Hunter Brown, people actually expect nasty stuff, and with good reason. He has a filthy 85 MPH curve, 96 MPH slider — that’s right, 96 MPH! That’s the fastest slider in the majors this year, outside of deGrom — and a 97 MPH fastball. If you didn’t watch him, all the pitches looked devastatingly good. Now’s the time when I turn this back into the here and now and for this year, you’re likely better off with the Streamonator than holding Brown. Also, holding Brown is how one gets sepsis. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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(NOTE: THIS POST WAS RELEASED EARLY THIS WEEK ON OUR PATREON. IT’S $10/MONTH)

It’s September call-up season, or SZN if you’re crazy hip. Down like a clown. Fresher than def. Only MLB scaled back the number of call-ups a team can do to make it less obvious teams were manipulating time. (That’s why I think, at least.) So, I debated Corbin Carroll, Gunnar Henderson, or Josh Jung for the lede vs. Keston Hiura. Guess which one I went with. Go ahead, I’ll give you five guesses, if you can’t get it, just be lucky you haven’t accidentally suffocated yourself in your own drool. Any hoo! Time for some pictures! Who doesn’t like pictures? First two pictures are Keston Hiura in 2020 and the 2nd two pictures are Keston Hiura in 2022.

You, “Ooh! Fun! Like one of those games where you have to figure out the difference between two pictures only this one is figuring out the difference between the top two pictures and the bottom two. Oh! I know! That’s a different pitcher! Clever, because it’s two different ‘pictures,’ so you made it different pitchers! You can’t get me! So, if you have no other picture games for me, I’m gonna take a nap…” And, with that, you remove your two glass eyes and place them in two glasses of water. You, “Hope I don’t drink them.” Okay, so what you might’ve missed is Hiura’s 2022 stance is much more closed, and his giant leg kick is reduced. He went from stepping over a dwarf to tip-toeing into the room.  For all hitters — all hitters — Keston Hiura has the best OPS vs. righties when sorting by only 90 plate appearances. That’s insane. He has a better OPS (1.120) than Aaron Judge, Yordan Alvarez, Juan Soto, Bryce Harper– EVERYONE! That’s crazy. His slugging percentage vs. righties is .704, which also leads the league. He’s also apparently hanging out too much with Pollock and can’t hit lefties, which is very odd for a righty, but you just switch him out when he faces those that use the weird scissors. Not exactly a fresh-faced call-up, but you can see why I wanted to highlight Keston Hiura with those pictures. Places glass eyes back in head, “Oh! Those are Keston Hiura?” Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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Justin Verlander (6 IP, 0 ER, no baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 1.87) is built different. At 39 years of age, he is dominating like he’s in his 20s. He’s doing things that have never been done before, while just coming back from Tommy John surgery. He truly is remarkable. I have an idea about how he’s performing so well, but to test my theory, I need to sleep with Kate Upton. I will talk to my wife, Cougs, and I will need to get Justin and Kate’s permission, as well. For science is how I will pitch it, and I’ll need to pitch better than Justin to get this to fly. I believe this is a sacrifice all four of us can make. I will be making perhaps the biggest sacrifice. For 2023 fantasy, what will Justin Verlander do as an encore after this season? His peripherals (8.9 K/9, 1.5 BB/9, 3.36 xFIP) look basically the same as his first Cy Young award that he won back in 2011, and, he should win his third this year. There’s no way I’m betting against Justin Verlander next year, not until everyone involved lets me sleep with Kate Upton to see if that has magical powers. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?