What’s up party people. Throughout the season I’ll be bringing you my, you guessed it, Top 75 outfielders rankings for the 2020 season; or as I sometimes refer to them, the Top 75 glorified ball-shaggers (yes I was an infielder, why you ask?). Like my other compadres, I will be updating these throughout the season and pointing out the risers (the ins), fallers (the outs), and others that have me thinking at the moment warranting attention (the what-have-yous). We all have opinions, and I have plenty to share with all of you (aren’t you lucky?). You can share yours with me in the comments below (shameless plug). Baseball is back.

Outfield, the final frontier (for failed infielders with plus bats that managers are trying to hide in the field). Sure you have your superstars with arm-canons and so on, but one thing is often overlooked. Some of these players, while they have above-average offensive potential, are liabilities in the field and essentially are trying to swing their way into the everyday lineup. Their future, as a function of playing time, is tied to their production at the plate. Domingo Santana is a prime example. Last year in Seattle he contributed a solid -1.9 dWAR, a career-low. Obviously, he’s not a golfer. This brings me to my next point, the DH, allows some “outfielders” on AL teams to get many more ABs than NL part-timers including big bats like Soler, Alvarez, and Reyes.

This year we also have a lot of young guns getting their shot at full-time gigs across a full season and more set to make an appearance as the season goes on. Rookies like Luis Robert and Jo Adell are set to make their debut in The Show. Second-year guys like Cavan Biggio and Oscar Mercado aim for Opening Day jobs and a full season of ABs. This offseason I was hyped to see Kyle Tucker and his 30/30 skills unleashed this season but then Bang-gate happened; Hinch was fired; and the death-of-all-young-position-players, the Toothpick, Dusty Baker was hired. Hopes and dreams squashed. Sure he might eventually come around, but I’m not holding my breath (yet).

Some initials thoughts as we begin Spring Training:

 

The Ins

Mike Trout – I know, I know, stop yelling. Hear me out here. I said stop yelling!  I’m seeing ‘perts, including our fearless leader Grey, that have him ranked 3rd overall or whatever. You know who has an 8-year average of 110/35/92/24/.308/.422? Trout that’s who. Over the last 3 years, avg HR/SB has been 37/17. What does that amount to? Consistency and reliability. This last year he just had a career-high in ISO, SLG, and HR. Also a career-low in BABIP of .298 (.348 career avg) flanked by career-highs in xBA (.311) and xSLG (.669) and now he will likely have Rendon hitting behind him. So this season could be even better.

Giancarlo Stanton – I know Greylo is on thin ice right now. I, however, just can’t quit him. A healthy (fingers crossed) Giancarlo in the Yankees lineup with a juiced ball is just too tempting to pass up. If he A) looks good in camp, and B) proceeds to blast a HR in the first week of the season, it will be hard not to vault him up to the 8th spot in short order. And that’s, just like, my opinion, man.

Jorge Soler – My boy, DJ Solerflare! Take it homey, it’s yours. What if I told you in 2019 he was top 5% in the league in Barrel%, ExitVelo, xSLG, xwOBA, xwOBAcon, and HardHit%… would you be impressed? Well, he was. Be impressed! His second half was all-world as he went 52/25/58/3/.299/.411/.665 and likely led many teams to the promised land.

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. – He has flown under the radar as Grey pointed out due to his limited time in the Bigs last year with only 314 ABs. After some initial struggles, he bounced back in big way when he returned from AAA. I covered what he fixed last year, here. And it changed in a big way! 2018-2019 vs breaking balls he went from AVG .232 to .278 and SLG .329 to .620! When you add his 2 short seasons together you get 563 ABs (a full season) and a stat line of 82/31/85/7/.279/.320 with nearly all of those bags in 2019. You can only imagine what he’ll do this year; he fixes the cable.

 

The Outs

Michael Brantley – I’ve never been a fan of Brantley. He’s always epitomized (word of the day) the very picture of “Boring” for me. Well, guess what, now he’s going to turn 33 this season. The single 20/20 season came and went and over the last 3 years his steals have been 11, 12, 3. Houston, we have a problem. And an asterisk. Without trashcans and a full head of hair, I could see his average beginning to dip this year. Why pay for an aging Brantley when you could get the new-and-improved version much later who goes by the name Bryan Reynolds.

Whit Merrifield – Does anyone else think he has a hobbit name? Whit is a better option than Brantley but still overpriced. He’s a year younger at 31, soon to be 32, and his K-rate reached a 3-year high of 17.1% last year. Also, his steals dropped as well to a 3-year low of 20… with 10 CS. That’s now down to a 66% success rate when in years past it was 34/8 and 45/10… It’s dangerous business, Whit, going out your door… there’s no knowing where you might be swept off.

Kyle Tucker – As I said a few blurbs ago, I was all hyped and ready to see his 30/30 talents on the Houston roster now that Marisnik was out of the way. Then Dusty Baker rode into town. Dusty Baker is just the guy to give Josh Reddick another 500 ABs for no apparent reason and completely prosblock Tucker from meaningful playing time. I’m going to watch and see if Reddick struggles; and maybe, possibly, Dusty turns over a new leaf… but I don’t have much hope save an injury once the dust settles. So instead I have my eye on…

 

The What-have-yous

Luis Robert – Robert or Adell was the choice here; fending off my homerism, it’s Robert via “guaranteed roster spot.” Last year in the minors (across all levels) Robert went for 32/36 with an AVG north of 300. Yum! He didn’t walk much so it will be interesting to see how aggressive he is with the big boys. In case you haven’t heard, the White Sox already signed him to a 6-year $50M contract extension before he even reported to camp. Needless to say, he’ll likely be on the Opening Day roster and manning CF, pending he doesn’t look outmatched in Spring Training. Out of the gate he’ll bring some swing and miss with him that could stunt his AVG but there’s certainly reason to climb aboard the hype train.

George Springer – So he just had a career-high in HRs, ISO, HardHit%, AVG, and OBP. Did Bang-gate help with some of that? Possibly. Looking at his HRs by pitch count, a lion’s share of them came off of the first 2 pitches. Hmmm. I then look at the breakdown by pitch type: all but 1 of his HR gains from last year came off of fastballs (12 to 27), yet he hit the worst vs offspeed since his rookie year (.279 to .149). Looks like he was trying to zero in on fastballs early and missing the change etc more. Make of that what you like. Oh, I will. This will be interesting to watch this year… and also see if that OBP raises to .400 ;)

Cavan Biggio – There’s a lot to diggio into here. Let’s start with the 16.5% BB-rate, which was good for top 2% of the league (hello OBP format). The caveat for Cavan being a 28.6% K-rate. Okay, so what did he have trouble with? Breaking balls and offspeed were both under the Mendoza line. Surely he chased a lot of garbaggio outside the zone, right? No! 13.5% Chase rate, 82% ZoneCon rate, 18.3% FirstPitchSw rate, and 35.9% TotSw rate. He’s as patient as a saint! And when he swings in the zone, he has high contact. Hmmm… My concerns are his xBA/xSLG of .240/.426, he wasn’t really cheated out of anything. You mean like how the Astr*s cheated baseball? No RIV, I mean unlucky. Oh, unlucky like Manfred’s slap on their wrist? Sure. Anyway, he might be a little too patient. If he could get a little more aggressive on identifying fastballs to drive etc, he could take a big step forward this year and make a bang. Or bang bang.

 

The Board

Rank Name Team Pos Change
1 Ronald Acuna Jr. ATL OF
2 Mike Trout LAA OF
3 Christian Yelich MIL OF
4 Cody Bellinger LAD 1B/OF
5 Mookie Betts LAD OF
6 Juan Soto WSH OF
7 Bryce Harper PHI OF
8 J.D. Martinez BOS OF
9 George Springer HOU OF
10 Aaron Judge NYY OF
11 Starling Marte ARI OF
12 Ketel Marte ARI 2B/SS/ OF
13 Yordan Alvarez HOU OF
14 Eloy Jimenez CHW OF
15 Giancarlo Stanton NYY OF
16 Austin Meadows TB OF
17 Jorge Soler KC OF
18 Ramon Laureano OAK OF
19 Eddie Rosario MIN OF
20 Charlie Blackmon COL OF
21 Kris Bryant CHC 3B/OF
22 Joey Gallo TEX OF
23 Tommy Pham SD OF
24 Oscar Mercado CLE OF
25 Luis Robert CHW OF
26 Victor Robles WSH OF
27 Marcell Ozuna ATL OF
28 Michael Conforto NYM OF
29 Nicholas Castellanos CIN OF
30 Whit Merrifield KC 1B/2B/ OF
31 Jeff McNeil NYM 2B/3B/ OF
32 Franmil Reyes CLE OF
33 Willie Calhoun TEX OF
34 Kyle Schwarber CHC OF
35 Hunter Dozier KC 1B/3B/ OF
36 Andrew Benintendi BOS OF
37 Lourdes Gurriel Jr. TOR 2B/OF
38 Trey Mancini BAL 1B/OF
39 Scott Kingery PHI 2B/SS/ 3B/OF
40 Cavan Biggio TOR 1B/2B/ OF
41 Danny Santana TEX 1B/2B/ SS/3B/ OF
42 Max Kepler MIN OF
43 Michael Brantley HOU OF
44 Brandon Lowe TB 1B/2B/ OF
45 Yasiel Puig FA OF
46 J.D. Davis NYM 3B/OF
47 Ian Happ CHC 1B/2B/ 3B/OF
48 Tommy Edman STL 2B/3B/ OF
49 David Dahl COL OF
50 Byron Buxton MIN OF
51 Mallex Smith SEA OF
52 Joc Pederson FA 1B/OF
53 Ryan Braun MIL OF
54 Andrew McCutchen PHI OF
55 Shin-Soo Choo TEX OF
56 Jo Adell LAA OF
57 Bryan Reynolds PIT OF
58 Aristides Aquino CIN OF
59 Yoshitomo Tsutsugo TB OF
60 Shogo Akiyama CIN OF
61 David Peralta ARI OF
62 Gregory Polanco PIT OF
63 Garrett Hampson COL 2B/SS/ OF
64 Alex Verdugo BOS OF
65 Jurickson Profar SD 2B/OF
66 Brian Anderson MIA 3B/OF
67 Adam Eaton WSH OF
68 Lorenzo Cain MIL OF
69 Kevin Pillar BOS OF
70 Justin Upton LAA OF
71 Austin Riley ATL 1B/3B/ OF
72 Mark Canha OAK 1B/OF
73 Domingo Santana CLE OF
74 Avisail Garcia MIL OF
75 Kyle Tucker HOU OF
 
  1. Snacks Zillion says:
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    Greylo, LOL! You gotta love razzball, seriously the best site out there and always good for a laugh. Greylo, awesome!! Thanks for this article, it was cool and I also cant quit Giancarlo, still think he has some fire!

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      haha, no prob snacks!

  2. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Move Austin Riley all the up this list to like 3rd

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      haha, does he have the starting job at 3B yet? shhhh he’s up next.

    • johnnyhobbes says:
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      What’s up ????

  3. TC says:
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    How much does Schwarber jump in an OBP? Took over a shitty keeper roster and needed a LF. Got him for Ryu and Andrus.

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Probably behind Ozuna

  4. Jolt In Flow says:
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    Nice write-up, Coolwhip!

    No Arozarena? Simply as a difference maker in steals, the guy needs to be on here. Is ‘Kyle Tucker’ another way of saying ‘Randy Arozarena’? Just IMO.

    Thanks. Keep the reports coming.

    Btw, tried to join the free league you’re a part of. Filled up by the time I even knew the leagues were out. Popular writer! Ah well. Next year.

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Thanks!

      Unfortunately, when will he play? Right now I just don’t see a path for him to have playing time after he ended up on a Rays team with a pretty competitive depth chart after a busy offseason. K2/Margot have CF locked up, Meadows/Lowe in RF, and Renfroe/Tsutsugo in LF… so no room at the inn.

      Aw, sorry to hear that. Leagues are usually annouced after the first week of Feb, so be on the lookout next year. I’ve already commited myself to too many otherwise I’d make another.

      • Jolt In Flow says:
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        That’s fair. I guess I just looked ahead a bit. You’re correct in what you said.

        I based my thought on RAzor (cool nickname, no?! The RAzor! Maybe the best in baseball and Razzball gets first dibs) getting fill in spots for the first month or two, but then getting full-time by June when TBay realizes all the runs he creates with speed and OnBase work.

        Keep the posts coming. Thanks CW.

  5. Dude at Dudes says:
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    Nice Lewbowski raankings…I have a liitle lebowski urban achievers t-shirt i always get at least one comment when i wear that shirt

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Thanks! glad someone caught and commented on it :) definitely a top 5 favorite movie for me. The dude abides.

  6. heisenberg says:
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    Nice list Coolwhip…Every list I’ve looked at is treating Senzel as a complete nobody. What am I missing? 2nd overall pick in draft..312 minors avg. w/.895 OPS…Great speed..lock for 25-30 sb..In 1st exposure to majors last year he didn’t set the world on fire, but was never overmatched, and was also injured a lot. As far as outfield glut, only an idiot would not play him everyday somewhere. Would love to know what you think of him. Thanks Cool!

    • heisenberg says:
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      and he makes contact and somehow went from a top prospect to a bum ..Dude has 375 mlb at bats. Love your work btw. Entertaining as is all of Razz

      • Coolwhip

        Coolwhip says:
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        Thanks a lot. appreciate the kind words.

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      So I’m not trying to throw shade at him; he still has a lot of potential. For my initial post he just didn’t crack the top 75 for me after I did the math. His first taste of the majors, though not bad, wasn’t exactly up to expectations and then the Reds outfield depth chart got hella crammed with guys having more of a track record or contract. On top of all that, he was just cleared Monday to participate in activities recovering from labrum surgery. So as things sit right now to start camp, he’s got a lot more question marks then some others. I need to see some progress before I move him up my list and onto my board.

  7. Ramon says:
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    HELLO, is there any site where I can find explained rules of FAAB. I play Yahoo and they just added that…

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Its Free Agent Aquisition Budget, basically you have a certain amount of dollars you can bid on new free agents / wire claims during the season. limits how many and forces you to choose how badly you want said player at given time. Yahoo should have an explamation of their specific rules on site. Or maybe theirs a reddit with it.

  8. Sagacious Sally says:
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    Hey Coolwhip –

    I play in a NL only H2H Weekly Points League, 260 auction draft, and have been offered a deal for Jeff McNeil-$5 who qualifies for three position the upcoming year. After this year I can hold him for $5 or sign him to a 3 year contract at $10 each year. The same is true for the two players I’ve been offered. Wong @ $2 and McMahon @ $6.

    Thanks for your advice.

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      In this situation I’d hold McNeil. Thats pretty good value for his flexibility.

      • Sagacious Sally says:
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        Thank you.

  9. Mike says:
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    12 team 5×5 categories league. 2 keepers max, it’s draft round -1. So a 3rd round pick kept costs 2nd round pick this year. But first round picks can be kept for the 1st round and 4th round pick.
    I drafted Tatis Jr in the 18th round, obvious keeper there.
    Deciding between: Juan Soto who was drafted in 3rd round and will cost my second round pick (still value)
    Or Ronald Acuna Jr. my favorite player, but was drafted in first round so would lose 1st and 4th round picks.
    Draft order isn’t set yet, but I’m leaning toward acuna no matter what. Thoughts?

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Yeah It’s a bit pricey but you gotta go with the 40/40 threat in my opinion when you can lock it in. It can cover so many mistakes during the season.

      • Coolwhip

        Coolwhip says:
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        Plus you have Tatis on the cheap so it evens out

  10. Bets on OF says:
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    Luis Robert or Kyle Tucker in dynasty keep forever?

    • Coolwhip

      Coolwhip says:
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      Robert

      • Bets on OF says:
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        Is it close? Or truly 50 spot difference even if both had starting jobs?

        • Coolwhip

          Coolwhip says:
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          In a redraft if both had starting jobs, they would be pretty close, I think Robert will come out of the gate a bit slow, or start fast then go cold then rise up due to plate discipline. In keep forever looking at careers, Robert has the higher ceiling as a freak athlete, he could be THAT good long term.

          • Bets on OF says:
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            Thanks much appreciated! Keep up the good work man

Comments are closed.