I’ve been dreading this next stretch for a hot minute.

Well–not “dreading” dreading. That word doesn’t fit many contexts now the world is experiencing existential dread on a daily basis.

But the faux fear is realish enough that my point stands: infield feels like pretty solid ground for fantasy baseball purposes. Pretty much every league uses a catcher, shortstop and first, second and third basemen. Some use one catcher, some use middle and corner infielders, some use an IF spot, but the needs across leagues, and the depth of each position, are fairly standard. 

Outfield and Pitcher feel like the dark arts. Snape describes them to Harry in book six, and Harry describes them to Dumbledore’s Army in book five, as a constantly shapeshifting, infinite battle for which there is no measure of readiness that reaches the level of being “prepared.” 

You do the best you can and react when the world changes. 

So that’s my task here, starting with the sequencing of the top 100 outfielders for 2021 dynasty baseball. 

PS: This is a living document and an invitation to converse. I’m not set in stone on any of these, particularly not my Trout ranking, which feels a bit criminal but perhaps just (like Harry’s DA meetings). I will update and continue ranking outfielders until we’ve covered all the relevant paths to magic.

Rank Player Age Team
1 Ronald Acuña Jr. 22 ATL
2 Christian Yelich 28 MIL
3 Mike Trout 28 LAA
4 Cody Bellinger 24 LAD
5 Juan Soto 21 WAS
6 Mookie Betts 27 LAD
7 Yordan Alvarez 22 HOU
8 Austin Meadows 24 TB
9 Luis Robert 22 CHW
10 Bryce Harper 27 PHI
11 Victor Robles 22 WAS
12 Eloy Jimenez 23 CHW
13 Jorge Soler 28 KC
14 Aaron Judge 27 NYY
15 Jo Adell 21 LAA
16 Starling Marte 31 ARI
17 JD Martinez 32 BOS
18 Joey Gallo 26 TEX
19 George Springer 30 HOU
20 CJ Abrams 19 SD
21 Julio Rodriguez 19 SEA
22 Giancarlo Stanton 30 NYY
23 Dylan Carlson 21 STL
24 Ramon Laureano 25 OAK
25 Jasson Dominguez 17 NYY
26 Michael Conforto 27 NYM
27 Byron Buxton 26 MIN
28 Charlie Blackmon 33 COL
29 Kyle Schwarber 27 CHC
30 Oscar Mercado 25 CLE
31 Jarred Kelenic 20 SEA
32 Kyle Tucker 23 HOU
33 Oneil Cruz 21 PIT
34 Kristian Robinson 19 ARI
35 Franmil Reyes 24 CLE
36 Bryan Reynolds 25 PIT
37 Tommy Pham 32 SD
38 Andrew Benintendi 25 BOS
39 Lourdes Gurriel 26 TOR
40 Eddie Rosario 28 MIN
41 Nick Castellanos 28 CIN
42 Marcell Ozuna 29 ATL
43 David Dahl 26 COL
44 Willie Calhoun 25 TEX
45 Trey Mancini 28 BAL
46 Corbin Carroll 19 ARI
47 Trent Grisham 23 SD
48 Brennen Davis 20 CHC
49 Michael Brantley 32 HOU
50 Max Kepler 27 MIN
51 Nick Senzel 24 CIN
52 Alex Verdugo 23 BOS
53 Luis Matos 18 SF
54 Nick Solak 25 TEX
55 Trevor Larnach 23 MIN
56 Zac Veen 18 ??
57 Garrett Mitchell 21 ??
58 Teoscar Hernandez 27 TOR
59 Yasiel Puig 29 ??
60 Avisail Garcia 28 MIL
61 Mark Canha 31 OAK
62 Heriberto Hernandez 20 TEX
63 Sam Hilliard 26 COL
64 Aaron Hicks 30 NYY
65 Austin Hays 24 BAL
66 Erick Pena 17 KC
67 Andrew McCutchen 33 PHI
68 Wil Myers 29 SD
69 Nomar Mazara 24 CHW
70 Yoshi Tsutsugo 28 TB
71 Riley Greene 19 DET
72 Drew Waters 21 ATL
73 Cristian Pache 21 ATL
74 Mallex Smith 26 SEA
75 Alek Thomas 19 ARI
76 Hedbert Perez 17 MIL
77 Mitch Haniger 29 SEA
78 Randy Arozarena 25 TB
79 Gregory Polanco 28 PIT
80 Adam Eaton 31 WAS
81 Ian Happ 25 CHC
82 AJ Pollock 32 LAD
83 David Peralta 32 ARI
84 Mike Yastrzemski 29 SF
85 Kyle Lewis 24 SEA
86 Monte Harrison 24 MIA
87 Jesse Winker 26 CIN
88 Aristides Aquino 26 CIN
89 Justin Upton 32 LAA
90 Shogo Akiyama 32 CIN
91 Lorenzo Cain 34 MIL
92 Gilberto Jimenez 19 BOS
93 Jaylin Davis 25 SF
94 Randall Grichuck 28 TOR
95 Franchy Cordero 25 SD
96 Jesus Sanchez 22 TB
97 Taylor Trammell 22 SD
98 Austin Riley 23 ATL
99 JJ Bleday 22 MIA
100 Austin Hendrick 18 ??

 

*Yordan Alvarez included for Yahoo! and other purposes.

Thanks for reading! I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter.

 
  1. Harley Earl says:
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    Itch!

    I see you have Matos at #51 despite his youth (18 years old). Please tell me more about this kid. Why so high on him? I’m intrigued by your Acuna comp!

    Must know more …

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Just got to this in the other post; I was tunnel-visioned into the next 50 and was thinking of the best way to discuss Matos. Still am, but here’s what I’ve got so far:

      I’m still thinking about the best way to do this . . .

      might be my first piece after this series

      aggro comps and the times I don’t hate em, or something

      For Matos there’s the size comp, the rounded game comp, the big league blood comp, the under the radar explosion comp, the rising system parallel, the baseball is easy parallel

      Younger Acuña could spray liners anywhere at will and chose/found a power path as he aged.

      Matos has a pretty linear swing plane today, but I don’t mind if that stays where it is for a while. High baseball acumen kid like him can add launch when the time is just right—another potential similarity to Acuña.

      We can’t know yet how he’ll respond to better spin, velo, command, but so far he’s just cruising.

      Adding now: I’m betting he’ll mostly cruise right on thru the minors. Might not struggle until AA, if then.

      • Harley Earl says:
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        Good stuff! Appreciate the quick response. Definitely someone to remember!

        Thanks!

        • Harley Earl says:
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          I also see you have Kjerstad at #100. I like it!!

  2. Dong Show says:
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    Itch, just want to say thanks for the great response to my White/Senzel trade question in your other thread! I’ll hold White as you suggested as that is also what my guy was telling me (because of how athletic he is). Really glad our comments are doing our best to keep your spirits up. I will say you are one of the most engaging and thoughtful people when it comes to readers responses, so you passion for helping us all out really comes through.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thank you ?

  3. NUX says:
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    Howdy! How you been man?

    My head explodes looking at Oneil Cruz on this list. I hope you’re right on him. I was so excited to see him come to Lehigh Valley this year. Hopefully that still happens.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      What up, NUX!?

      Hope things are good (enough) on your end!

  4. Malicious Phenoms says:
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    Hey Itch, you have Ian Happ at 79 and 83. Great list have many of these OF’er’s on my three total teams.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks MP!

      Good lookin’ out!

  5. Byron says:
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    Where would Yordan rank if eligible?

    • goodfold2 says:
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      7th, see above.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks, Byron!

      Got this question enough that I realized I should just put him on the list.

  6. Charlie says:
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    Time to move Jesus Sanchez to Miami.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks, Charlie!

      I’ve made some odd team flubs.

      Had Andrelton Simmons on Atlanta . . .

  7. Homers got the runs says:
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    Hi, I would like an opinion on a potential keeper trade. I would be trading Snell and Bregman for Verlander and Tatis. My need is stolen bases, hence making this trade would help. All players would remain keepers going into next year with the exception of Verlander as I would most likely leave him unprotected or trade him for pick improvements if possible. It is a 12 team keeper.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Hi, Homers got the runs!

      I want the Tatis side in general but especially w a SB need.

      • Homer's got the Runs says:
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        Thank you.

  8. Jolt In Flow says:
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    Itch! Thanks for this report.

    Just one observation that blew my mind when I read it. Juan Soto only 21. Feels like he’s been around for a long time. Already a world series champ. Man, that threw me for a loop.

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks Jolt!

      I actually had Soto 2nd at one point, so wild is his age v level.

  9. krazyivan says:
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    Nice list. I’m higher on Kekenic then some. He looks like a dangerous hitter.

    • krazyivan says:
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      Kelinic

      • Harley Earl says:
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        Krazyivan,

        Not sure what you’re saying here. A ranking of #31 as a dynasty player for Kelenic is exceptional. Julio Rodriguez clearly has a higher ceiling while Kelenic has less risk with his profile overall but not as much potential. So #20 at Rodriguez seems fair too.

        Who do you think Kelenic should be ahead of? Carlson? Dominguez? I would disagree on both but that doesn’t mean you’re wrong to like Kelenic more. I think Carlson and Kelenic might be dead even but I prefer Carlson slightly. No way would I draft Kelenic ahead of Rodriguez or Dominguez.

        Obviously, it’s an imperfect science but Itch does a very nice job here. So where do you think Kelenic belongs?

        • krazyivan says:
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          I agree with his rating. This is one of the places where I’ve seen Kelenic up so high. It is a nice list. I agree that 23 would be pretty aggressive especially since we haven’t seen him in AAA yet.

          • Harley Earl says:
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            My bad Krazyivan.

            I thought you were disappointed with Itch’s rating. It’s definitely a nice rating. I think Kelenic and Carlson are basically the same player.

  10. thehombre says:
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    Luis Matos #1.

    It’s about to be a lifestyle.

    • goodfold2 says:
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      yeah itch is higher on him than mostly anywhere so you can get him rounds later than he’d be doing in almost every league.

  11. HamPorter says:
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    Good stuff Itch,

    Are you still high on Brennen Davis? I’ve got a few shares of him and wonder how far out of the top 100 he is? Thanks for the insight!

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks, Ham Porter!

      I actually woke up in the middle of last night wondering and worrying if I’d somehow lost Davis from the list!!

      Will update soon. Had him in the 40-range.

      • HamPorter says:
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        No problem itch! I value your opinion and was just curious. In a 12 team NL only dynasty league, can roster 10 farm players. I have a full roster but would you drop Shewmake and Misner for any part of Jose Garcia, Luis Matos, Herbert Perez, Bryce Ball, or Nick Lodolo? I think I could probably get two of them. I also have Davis, Carlson, Bohm, Batt, Stott, Carrol, Luis Garcia, and Jesus Sanchez. Thanks for the input!

        • HamPorter says:
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          Oh, forgot Toglia too, but I’m on the fence about him, you know Rockies and all…

          • The Itch

            The Itch says:
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            I’d want Matos and Hedbert.

            If it’s Garcia the Nat I’d drop him for Garcia.

            Shewmake might get picked up, but Misner might slide through.

  12. Leon says:
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    My Bruan or witt jr, or pearson for Brandon lowe

    My same guys above for Mcmahon.

    would you do either?

    thanks.

    • leon says:
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      im sorry Brujan*

      • The Itch

        The Itch says:
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        I might offer Witt for Lowe if I can add a 2021 FYPD.

        Wouldn’t have to be much, but I wouldn’t do any of these straight up.

        Unless you really need 2B in 2020 and wanna push for a title in the condensed season.

        If so I’d do Witt if I had to.

  13. IntendedSteb says:
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    Good stuff!
    I thought for sure Valera would be somewhere in the mid 60s

    • The Itch

      The Itch says:
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      Thanks, IntendedSteb!

      Valera is coming right up! Got grouped in w some similar dudes now he’s looking unlikely to run and is hunting power.

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