There are times in life when one is right, and times when one is wrong. I realized over the past week that this list has been much more 162 than 60. We have passed a third of the season and one thing has become apparent above all: The changes implemented by MLB and teams have not affected everyone equally. Some have thrived, others have wilted. A big part of this list was the theory that a short season would help the older players. For the most part, this has not happened. So gentle readers, the electronic tones of LCD Soundsystem to you. I can change.

There is so much change in this list from last time we’re more or less starting over. There are no previous rankings or plus or minus this week because 15% of the list changed in one week. Pour one out for the 15 who are gone. We’re looking to the future, and a new Number 1.

#1 Fernando Tatis Jr. – He was going to be Number 2, but then he broke the unwritten rule rubicon and threw in a steal of third for good measure. Hail to the chief.

#7 Nelson Cruz – The one ultra old guy who has risen from the ravages of old age and Covid change to lead the Minnesota Twins to glory. .333, 9 homers, 1.074 OPS.

#28 & #29 Matt Chapman & Matt Olson– These guys aren’t making a ton of contact, but 9 homers speak volumes, and they’re the heart and soul of the team having the most fun (sorry Tampa) in 2020. Turns out August really does stand for A’s, no matter when the season starts.

#20 Nolan Arenado – He’s hitting a horrible .218, still has plenty of pop with 7 homers, but he’s going to have to raise that average to move up into the top 15. At the same time, he’s strong history and prime age keep him at #20.

#21 Brandon Lowe – .313, 9 homers, fourth with 64 Total Bases. His greatness can no longer be ignored. Sometimes a player makes the ‘The Leap’. Time to accept it.

#22 Luke Voit – Second in the league with 10 homers, hitting .311, all his Yankee teammates going down is just giving him more opportunities to rack up RBI. 5 homers in his last 4 games, he’s locked in.

#25 Jose Abreu – The best of the Cuban imports (Rusney Castillo should send 40% of his contract to Abreu), combines his 10 homers with a .322 average. His three home run games are quieter and more dignified than some others.

#27 & #28 Francisco Lindor & Jose Ramirez – Lindor is only at .252 with 4 homers, Ramirez .233 with 5 homers. The Indians must feel lucky to be in the AL Central with the middle of their lineup doing that and the starters a mess.

#32 Jesse Winker – .328, 6 homers, .458 OBA, at some point it’s just not a mirage.

#33 Anthony Santander – The best Rule 5 choice in a few years, .291, 74 Total Bases, 10 homers. Seriously, this guy is top three in all of baseball in TB. He’d be higher with any kind of track record (.261, 20 HR, .773 OPS was considered a career year last year, currently sporting a 1.012 OPS).

#34 Teoscar Hernandez – Outshining his more hyped teammates by a long shot. .289, 9 homers, 2 steals.

#37 Ian Happ – .296, 6 homers, 6 doubles, 1 triple, 1.036 SLG! It’s Happ-ening! He’s picking up the slack for the injured Bryant and slumping Schwarber.

#38 Kyle Lewis – Finally right?!? Third in the league in batting at .373 with 6 homers. Another lack of track record or he’d be higher.

#42 J.D. Martinez – .235, 3 homers, hating life in the shutdown. He’d be lower if it weren’t for his track record and still prime age, may turn things around if traded to a contender so he remains on the radar.

#47 Aaron Judge – He’s almost back. Of course, that could mean he’s almost on the shelf again.

#49 Wilmer Flores – We touts have been waiting for this for years. Gotta start him against lefties. Overall .317 with 7 homers.

#49 Randal Grichuk – .293 and 6 homers. The secondary Jays getting it done.

#50 Kole Calhoun – 7 homers speaks volumes.

#53 Donovan Solano – You could argue Yaz should be higher, but Solano is batting a smooth .363. No power, but that’s impressive.

#56 Mitch Moreland – His legs might go at any second, and he sits against most lefties, but .340 and 7 homers. And he could be traded at any time and start playing for a contender again.

#56 Dansby Swanson – .306, 3 homers, another taking advantage of more famous teammates going down. Number 1 overall pick from 2015 finally achieving some of that promise.

#70 Mike Yastrzemski – .311, 6 homers, unlike some others on this list is practically an old man at 30 in only his second season. Still, he’s making his Grand Dad proud.

#80 Trent Grisham – The loudest of 3 homer games on Twitter, .271, 4 steals, .381 OBA, 7 homers overall. Part of the San Diego fairy tale that doesn’t want to end. Gotta be thrilled for Don Orsillo.

#87 Dominic SmithClint Frazier may be on the list soon, but his fellow 2013 draftee has quietly stolen the baton. .323, 6 homers, .403 OBA. He would be higher but his team has stopped playing for a week.

#91 Wil Myers – Is this the year he puts it all together? .280, 7 homers. Seriously, the Brothers Grimm couldn’t come up with this stuff. Day after day Grand Slams, Wil Myers justifying his contract for even a short time, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria!

#93 David Fletcher – .316, 3 homers, 9 doubles, .374 OBA, 2 steals. Plus, he’s Twitter’s favorite player.

#94 Gleyber Torres – He’s on the shelf and it was worse than they thought, so two weeks. He’s one bad report away from off the list, but hanging on for now.

#97 Hanser Alberto – .321 for the fighting Birds.

There’s plenty of movement in the holdovers. They’re either killing it, they’re slipping or they’ve gotten injured. So many injuries. Oh, and the Astros are having a tough time at the plate even as they move up in the AL West.

Rank Name Position Team
1 Fernando Tatis Jr. SS SD
2 Mike Trout OF LAA
3 Christian Yelich OF MIL
4 Mookie Betts OF LAD
5 Juan Soto OF WSH
6 Cody Bellinger 1B/OF LAD
7 Nelson Cruz DH MIN
8 Trevor Story SS COL
9 Trea Turner SS WSH
10 Charlie Blackmon OF COL
11 Bryce Harper OF PHI
12 Manny Machado SS/3B SD
13 Ketel Marte 2B/OF ARI
14 Nick Castellanos OF CIN
15 Luis Robert OF CHW
16 J.T. Realmuto C PHI
17 Tim Anderson SS CHW
18 Xander Bogaerts SS BOS
19 Keston Hiura 2B MIL
20 Nolan Arenado 3B COL
21 Brandon Lowe 2B TAM
22 Luke Voit 1B NYY
23 Rafael Devers 3B BOS
24 Starling Marte OF ARI
25 Jose Abreu 1B CHW
26 Anthony Rendon 3B LAA
27 Francisco Lindor SS CLE
28 Jose Ramirez 3B CLE
29 Matt Chapman 3B OAK
30 Matt Olson 1B OAK
31 Anthony Rizzo 1B CHC
32 Jesse Winker OF CIN
33 Anthony Santander OF BAL
34 Teoscar Hernandez OF TOR
35 Adalberto Mondesi SS KC
36 Ronald Acuna Jr. OF ATL
37 Ian Happ OF CHC
38 Kyle Lewis OF SEA
39 Carlos Correa SS HOU
40 Freddie Freeman 1B ATL
41 Whit Merrifield 2B/OF KC
42 J.D. Martinez OF BOS
43 Marcell Ozuna OF ATL
44 Austin Meadows OF TB
45 George Springer OF HOU
46 Eloy Jimenez OF CHW
47 Aaron Judge OF NYY
48 Yuli Gurriel 1B/3B HOU
49 Wilmer Flores 2B SF
50 Randal Grichuk OF TOR
51 Kole Calhoun OF ARI
52 Yoan Moncada 3B CHW
53 Donovan Solano SS SF
54 Max Kepler OF MIN
55 Franmil Reyes OF CLE
56 Mitch Moreland 1B BOS
57 Dansby Swanson SS ATL
58 Corey Seager SS LAD
59 Jose Altuve 2B HOU
60 Paul Goldschmidt 1B STL
61 Pete Alonso 1B NYM
62 DJ LeMahieu 1B/2B/3B NYY
63 Jorge Polanco SS MIN
64 Michael Brantley OF HOU
65 Gary Sanchez C NYY
66 Marcus Semien SS OAK
67 Bo Bichette SS TOR
68 Victor Robles OF WSH
69 Vladimir Guerrero Jr. 1B TOR
70 Mike Yastrzemski OF SFG
71 Jonathan Villar 2B/SS MIA
72 Eddie Rosario OF MIN
73 Javier Baez SS CHC
74 Shohei Ohtani DH LAA
75 Alex Bregman SS/3B HOU
76 Josh Bell 1B PIT
77 Michael Conforto OF NYM
78 Kyle Schwarber OF CHC
79 Kyle Seager 3B SEA
80 Trent Grisham OF SD
81 Jorge Soler OF KC
82 Cavan Biggio 2B TOR
83 Justin Turner 3B LAD
84 Jeff McNeil 2B/3B/OF NYM
85 Christian Vazquez C BOS
86 Josh Donaldson 3B MIN
87 Dominic Smith OF NYM
88 David Peralta OF ARI
89 Alex Verdugo OF BOS
90 Max Muncy 1B/2B/3B/OF LAD
91 Wil Myers 1B/3B/OF SD
92 Eduardo Escobar 2B/3B ARI
93 David Fletcher 3B LAA
94 Gleyber Torres 2B/SS NYY
95 Ozzie Albies 2B ATL
96 Ramon Laureano OF OAK
97 Hanser Alberto 2B BAL
98 Edwin Encarnacion DH CHW
99 Mike Moustakas 2B/3B CIN
100 Kris Bryant 3B CHC

 

 
  1. Donkey Teeth

    Donkey Teeth says:
    (link)

    Loads of hot takes here, nice list Thom!

    But Trent “The Reckoning” Grisham is still too low!

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Bring on the Grisham hate, he’s getting there, but we’ll see if he can keep it up!

  2. Simsbad says:
    (link)

    Love the new approach here. I definitely think that this is your rough draft and next week’s 100 will be fire. This should be a more popular take on the top 100, but I’m sure there will be some doubters. Keep it up!

    p.s. Coming from someone who owns Bogaerts and Ramirez… I’d swap their ranks. Those bag swipes are nothing to overlook from JoRam.

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Appreciate it! Santander had another hit today and now has 17 straight games, Abreu hit at least one more home run. Lots of change means there will be more as it gets even more fine tuned. The Red Sox in particular are hard to peg with things being in flux. By the time the next list comes out many more trades will happen so yes, it’s 2020 Covid year where everything is a rough draft.

  3. Simsbad says:
    (link)

    double p.s. -> where’s my boy, Mercado???

    j/k

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Tito Francona gave Pedroia two months of under .200 batting in his ROY win in 2006. Mercado in another year would’ve gotten a much longer leash.

      • Simsbad says:
        (link)

        Who would you rather let kiss your mother? Oscar Mercado or Franchy Cordero?

        • Thomas Howland

          Thomas Howland says:
          (link)

          HA!

  4. Mike says:
    (link)

    Why Devers over Rendon?

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Devers has shown signs of breaking out (.294 last 14, .333 last 7/.863 to .994 OPS) Rendon has been killing it lately even more, but had an oblique injury earlier in the season that can be known to recur. If Rendon keeps it up and Devers falls back the rankings will change. Just a hedge on Rendon due to injury risk (for now).

  5. Player X says:
    (link)

    Start Jean Segura or Brian Anderson this upcoming wk? 6×6 obp

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      They’re both slumping, but I’d take Segura thanks to the SB potential.

  6. JKJ

    JKJ says:
    (link)

    Good stuff my man. Santander was one I didn’t believe in coming into this year. And I didn’t believe in him early on, but damn he’s having some kinda year.

    I don’t buy Brandon Lowe. HR/FB% is just too damn high. But I didn’t buy Santander…

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      These two are the most 2020 of all. Career years can happen out of the blue. Lowe is currently “slumping” over the past 7 to .211 BA/.375 OBP/.901 OPS with 2 homers. Other than the batting avg, that’s a great week. Last 14 .354/.446/1.321 7 homers 4 doubles. Santander .352/.417/1.269 7 homers 6 doubles last 14, .379/.438/1.438 3 doubles 5 homers last 7! Until they prove otherwise they’re up there.

  7. B says:
    (link)

    How is EE over Canha?

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Escobar is getting extremely unlucky right now, His babip is at .130 for the last 7 whereas his career avg is .280. Strong track record and better lineup position than Canha. Both have three homers.

      • B says:
        (link)

        Sorry. Meant EEE. But great stuff and overall not being critical. You the man!

        • Thomas Howland

          Thomas Howland says:
          (link)

          You mean Edwin Encarnacion? He’s got a .182 BABIP the last 7, but also 2 homers and a 130 sOPS+ So his long track record of power and production have started to show up, unlike Votto, Santana, etc. And please, no worries about asking questions, that’s what we’re here for!

  8. JD Hassett

    JD Hassett says:
    (link)

    Josh Bell still in top 100. I was getting ready to drop him. Talk me off the ledge

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Career .830 OPS, .260 BA. His bat islumbering, but can awake at any moment.

  9. Saint says:
    (link)

    Appreciate the weekly update. I rode K. Marte last year and drafted him in the 3rd this year. You have him at 13. Nice average, but 1 HR and 1 bag so far. Number 84 batter on player rater. Please make your case for your ranking so I can feel some positive vibes.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      K-Mart’s power speed is still waiting, but could break out at any day, and there are extremely few power speed combo’s like him. One good thing is the 9 doubles, showing the power is there, despite just one homer. And the slump of most of the Arizona bats has taken away the green light for steals. 5 doubles the last 14, 3 doubles the last 7. Some of those will start going over the fence soon. He’ll be dropped if things don’t look up for him and Arizona this week, but I still have faith he could win a lot of leagues in the last weeks.

  10. Dingo37 says:
    (link)

    So much better.
    Thanks for Kyle!

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      My sincere apologies for not waking up sooner. Trying to be more like this list, awake, active, engaged in 2020 vs beat down by Covid and distracted and wondering why the season is happening at all.

  11. thorbs says:
    (link)

    Awesome writeup!

    Couple dynasty Qs – I’ve got a surplus of top bats and my pitching has been terrible, so looking to make a couple stretch run deals.

    Yay/Nay to:

    My Arenado for Luis Castillo+ (I’d have Rizzo, J-Ram, Nunez, La Stella for CI, Jones as a prospect)

    or

    My Robles for Woodruff (details to be hashed out, but have Trout/Betts/Yelich/Ozuna plus a trio of top-50 overall OF prospects)

    Do either of those seem like reasonable deals? I’m unreasonably attached to both bats and am not objective thinking about dealing them.

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      You’re in Dynasty, so I would rather have Arenado than Rizzo, Nunez, La Stella and maybe even J-Ram since is the second year in a row that he in particular has underperformed (even though the power and speed is coming through). Robles for Woodruff I like a lot better, and definitely something I would do. Woodruff is underappreciated, Castillo getting a lot of pub, but in the end they’re not that much different.

      • thorbs says:
        (link)

        Thanks for the reply! I mentioned those other CI as in I wouldn’t be screwed at the position if I moved Arenado, but definitely take your point and agree, I’m overreacting to his slow start.

        Keep up the good work!

  12. Tony C says:
    (link)

    I love your new and improved Top 100 hitters list!

    Is JD Davis worthy of top 100 status for remainder of the year?

    Thanks and keep up the good work. I appreciate the current analysis.

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      J.D. Davis was in consideration, but he’s on the Mets and their Covid situation got him off. Another thing that points to a slump for him, for the year his BABIP is .352. That’s extremely lucky. Last 7 playing days it was .143. So he’s on the radar, and again would be there if not for Covid.

  13. frank rizzo says:
    (link)

    Did I miss Tucker? He’s becoming one of the Astros best bats.

    • Thomas Howland

      Thomas Howland says:
      (link)

      Meant to reply, see my reply below.

  14. Thomas Howland

    Thomas Howland says:
    (link)

    Young Kyle does have 4 homers, but he’s hitting .240. His career average is .220. A great last 7 days but they’ve probably been the best 7 days of his entire MLB career. Unlike others with not a lot of track record he’s not in the top 10 in any category other than triples. So it’s going to take either more from him, or another week of slumping from others in order to crack the Top 100. The Astros best bats is a relative term, these aren’t the sluggers of the last few years.

Comments are closed.