Top 60 fantasy outfielders for 2011

Other 2011 fantasy rankings by position:
Catcher || First Base || Second Base || Shortstop || Third Base || Corner and Middle Infield

To remind everyone: These rankings are based on position eligibility. Players who are eligible at multiple positions will be ranked in comparison with others at each relevant position. You will also note asterisks next to the names of certain players. These indicate health risks. Health concerns have been taken into consideration, as have expected talent and expected playing time to yield expected production.

Position eligibility and evaluation criteria for these rankings are explained here.

Rank      Player              Team           Oliver Slash (2011)**
1         Ryan Braun          Brewers        .307/.367/.533
2         Matt Holliday       Cardinals      .301/.380/.500
3         Josh Hamilton*      Rangers        .301/.360/.501
4         Carlos Gonzalez     Rockies        .288/.340/.508
5         Carl Crawford       Red Sox        .287/.341/.426
6         Matt Kemp           Dodgers        .270/.328/.454
7         Jason Heyward       Braves         .308/.393/.539
8         Justin Upton        Diamondbacks   .291/.372/.536
9         Nelson Cruz*        Rangers        .272/.341/.504
10        Shin-Soo Choo       Indians        .294/.387/.480
11        Andrew McCutchen    Pirates        .277/.357/.448
12        Alex Rios           White Sox      .265/.313/.408
13        Jayson Werth*       Nationals      .261/.361/.460
14        Ichiro Suzuki       Mariners       .309/.351/.392
15        Jay Bruce           Reds           .265/.336/.486
16        Mike Stanton        Marlins        .283/.359/.623
17        Jacoby Ellsbury*    Red Sox        .266/.324/.359
18        Hunter Pence        Astros         .270/.324/.445
19        Drew Stubbs         Reds           .232/.306/.354
20        Curtis Granderson*  Yankees        .246/.324/.433
21        Andre Ethier        Dodgers        .278/.356/.485
22        Torii Hunter        Angels         .273/.346/.441
23        Domonic Brown       Phillies       .271/.336/.449
24        B.J. Upton          Rays           .244/.338/.394
25        Chris Young         Diamondbacks   .238/.320/.420
26        Colby Rasmus        Cardinals      .259/.338/.467
27        Jose Bautista       Blue Jays      .239/.347/.478
28        Grady Sizemore*     Indians        .250/.342/.453
29        Manny Ramirez*      Free Agent     .272/.371/.463
30        Nick Markakis       Orioles        .280/.358/.424
31        Brett Gardner       Yankees        .256/.353/.345
32        Carlos Beltran*     Mets           .278/.362/.447
33        Shane Victorino     Phillies       .267/.332/.413
34        Vladimir Guerrero   Rangers        .284/.332/.449
35        Desmond Jennings    Rays           .261/.335/.382
36        Jason Bay           Mets           .254/.352/.457
37        Adam Jones          Orioles        .271/.318/.429
38        Bobby Abreu         Angels         .257/.348/.404
39        Vernon Wells        Blue Jays      .272/.324/.446
40        Jose Tabata         Pirates        .298/.351/.422
41        Corey Hart          Brewers        .271/.327/.463
42        Ben Zobrist         Rays           .256/.361/.418
43        Juan Pierre         White Sox      .273/.329/.323
44        Carlos Quentin*     White Sox      .252/.339/.480
45        Angel Pagan         Mets           .278/.331/.417
46        Delmon Young        Twins          .292/.330/.464
47        Michael Bourn       Astros         .254/.325/.331
48        Travis Snider       Blue Jays      .263/.329/.470
49        Lance Berkman*      Cardinals      .262/.374/.443
50        Luke Scott          Orioles        .252/.331/.454
51        Nick Swisher        Yankees        .249/.346/.443
52        Coco Crisp          Athletics      .268/.338/.401
53        Logan Morrison      Marlins        .286/.376/.452
54        Hideki Matsui       Athletics      .253/.339/.412
55        J.D. Drew           Red Sox        .243/.350/.423
56        Aubrey Huff         Giants         .265/.339/.448
57        Michael Cuddyer     Twins          .270/.340/.449
58        Matt Joyce          Rays           .240/.340/.445
59        Rajai Davis         Blue Jays      .275/.316/.374
60        Carlos Lee          Astros         .259/.305/.412

*Assuming health (which means assuming the amount of health I expect from them), being tendered a contract.
**Oliver’s 2011 projections have been updated. Most of the projections are essentially similar, but for the most up to date projections, subscribe to THT Forecasts by clicking here. If you are unsure of whether to subscribe to THT Forecasts, you can read about why I love THT Forecasts by clicking here

For those of you who caught the unfinished version of this list in my third basemen rankings two weeks ago, I apologize for the overwriting error. The numbers here represent my present-sense rankings after some tinkering.

These rankings place a premium on balance and counting stats over batting average. Outfielders tend to be the most balanced fantasy players, providing the most speed/power combination of any position. Balance is the key to a successful fantasy baseball campaign because it simultaneously fills out categories and diversifies risk. While some like to invest in single-stat commodities with higher upside, I will take two more balanced players.

For example, some might draft a few power guys (e.g., Nick Swisher) and a few steals guys (e.g., Juan Pierre) to collectively fill out their total production. This is unwise in my view for two reasons.

One, it takes up precious roster space, which—unless you are in a deep bench league—should be used for utility players, speculation picks and backup plans. Moreover, in the specialization approach to fantasy baseball, you put a lot of stock in individual players. If Jacoby Ellsbury was your steals guy last year, for example, you were ruined before May. An injury to a single player in the specialization approach can jeopardize your season, especially if his specialized skill set is hard to replace on the waiver wire. After all, how many of the top producers in steals and home runs are sitting on the waiver wire as back-up options?

If you draft for balance, however, even if balance sacrifices upside, you mitigate the risk. If a 15/15 guy goes down, you can likely find a 10/10 guy to replace his production while he is on the DL. Furthermore, the total amount of category you lose by that single injury is less because you’ve distributed your team’s total stats per category among the players on your team. Accordingly, balance is a smart choice unless you are in shallow leagues or have an “all-or-nothing,” high risk/reward, all-eggs-in-one-basket approach to fantasy baseball.

This mindset in mind, these rankings become more clear. In addition to balance, I put a premium on the counting stats. I view batting average as too volatile to predict accurately, and while I do not ignore it, I do not draft for it. That is why you might view some batting average outfielders as ranked “too low” on this list. Feel free to adjust them accordingly or argue their case in the comments.

Missing from these rankings are several names that I like: Chris Carter (.250/.339/.489), Josh Willingham (.253/.358/.456), Julio Borbon (.272/.319/.346), Denard Span (.276/.356/.371), Kyle Blanks (.261/.349/.452), Lastings Milledge (.263/.319/.375), and Ryan Kalish (.255/.331/.401). I could not justify including any in the rankings due to some perceived flaw, such as serious playing time concerns (Carter, Kalish, Millege), health concerns (Willingham, Blanks), or the team’s dynamics and the player’s unrefined skill set (Julio Borbon and base stealing). I also wish I could include Nolan Reimold (.244/.329/.399), but he’s a pure wild card at this point.

I have some players ranked quite high here that I personally would not draft. Guys like Carl Crawford, Ichiro Suzuki, Jacoby Ellsbury, Luke Scott, and Brett Gardner are certainly valuable, but they are too “specialized” for my tastes. I owned Ichiro last year and while his batting average was useful, I learned just how much an underperforming (or injured) specialized talent can affect your team’s bottom line. Instead, I’d rather take the balance approaches of Justin Upton, Matt Kemp, Shin-Soo Choo, Jay Bruce, Drew Stubbs, Chris Young and Angel Pagan, even if they individually offer less of a production ceiling overall.

I know that five players in particular seem controversial: Desmond Jennings, Domonic Brown, Manny Ramirez, Grady Sizemore and Carlos Beltran.

With respect to Jennings and Brown: Both are “unpolished” rookies who underwhelmed in their brief September call-ups last season. Each, however, offers fantastic upside, has nothing left to prove in the minors, will be an Opening Day outfielder for his team, and has produced impressive major league equivalent batting lines.

Without a doubt, Jennings is a “Carl Crawford of the future” type*. He is the reason the Rays were able to so comfortably let Crawford walk without bidding more than an offer of arbitration for 2011 to the departed free agent (now a Red Sox). In the minors, Jennings stole 171 bases in 204 attempts over 420 games, producing an .824 OPS on the heels of a 10.6 percent walk rate and doubles power. While Jennings’ touted power potential (15-20 home run capability) has yet to materialize, he is still only 24 and one of baseball’s best prospects. He’s a career .299 hitter in the minors, and I would not be shocked to see Jennings hit for a .280-plus batting average with five to 10 home runs, three-plus stolen bases and over 100 runs from atop the Rays’ lineup (with upside to spare). Even better is the high floor given his skill set of walking, hitting for average and foot speed.
*I recently had to downgrade Jennings value, as the Johnny Damon signing is expected to bump him down to Triple-A to start the season.

Like Jennings, Brown is an incredibly talented hitter. He’s the prospect the Phillies refused to trade for either Cliff Lee (the first time they got him) or Roy Halladay. Given those expectations, Brown’s .257/.257/.355 line over 70 plate appearances last season was disappointing. Nonetheless, Brown is a talented hitter with more upside than Jennings, albeit less polished, as evident by his splits against same-handed pitching in the minors.

After putting up a minor league career line of .296/.373/.464 with 48 home runs to 89 stolen bases over 424 games, Brown demonstrated himself capable of 20+/20+ production with a strong batting average. Oliver expects a .271/.336/.449 line from Brown in 2011, while Bill James expects 25+/25+ production next season with a batting average around .290. My expectations for Brown are high, given his high ceiling (and high perceived floor).

The last three names—Ramirez, Sizemore, and Beltran—all come with their own blend of risk and upside. Manny is currently unemployed, going on 39 years old, hates playing day games and has been a perpetual injury risk. Irrespective of the injury risk and lack of employment, however, Ramirez has been quite fantasy-productive when he takes the field, especially in OBP leagues, and a move to the DH role should help preserve his health and keep him playing in those “tiring” day games. Over the past two seasons, Manny has averaged a .295 batting average, 20-plus home run production per 150 games, and good run/RBI rates, while posting OBPs north of .400. Reliable four-category production is rare and while deploying Manny as your first or second outfielder would be unwise, he makes a strong third or fourth outfielder risk that should be complemented with a backup option.

Both Beltran and Sizemore present big gambles. As recently as two seasons ago, both were perpetual top-20 fantasy picks. They were as safe and balanced and production as could be. Beltran was a lock for a .280-plus batting average with 25 or more home runs, 15-20 stolen bases and 100 run/RBI production from the middle of the Mets’ fearsome offensive lineup. Sizemore was a perpetual 30/30 lock. In recent memory, however, both have been injured toxic assets.

For two years in a row, Sizemore burned those who took high-risk gambles on him (even last year, he cost me $18 via auction). Over the past two seasons, Sizemore has played only 139 games, over which he hit 18 home runs, stole 17 bases, and hit well under .250. Even injured, however, he still produced 88 runs and 77 RBI from atop the Indians’ relatively weak lineup. Furthermore, Sizemore is only 28 years old and reportedly recovering well from his injury. While you should not pay top or even medium dollar for Sizemore, he remains a strong bounce-back player for 2011 if healthy, easily capable of top 30 production. His ranking here reflects my expected production, not his expected price tag. Do not spend more than $5 at auction.

Like Sizemore, Beltran could provide large dividends to those who gamble on him. Beltran has played 145 games over the past two seasons and while his polar BABIPs (.352, .275) in each of the past two seasons has caused wild batting average fluctuations (.325, .255), he has nonetheless been cumulatively productive while playing injured (a combined 17 home runs, 14 stolen bases). Now 33, Beltran’s production ceiling, especially in light of his injuries, is lower than it was a few years ago. Nonetheless, Beltran has shown himself 20/20 capable while playing injured. Barring DL stints, Beltran should approach or exceed a 20/15 line in 2011, with a decent batting average to boot. He’ll likely cost just as much as Sizemore, but offers less risk/reward potential.

As always, leave your love hate in the comments.

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  1. DrBGiantsfan said...

    Might want to consider Andres Torres and Cody Ross as honorable mentions.  I see several names on the top 60 list that I would probably prefer either of them to.

  2. Ben Pritchett said...

    I like your overall rankings with the exception of Ethier and Bautista, but you’re going to have to explain to me what you’re thinking with Delmon Young…

  3. Mitch said...

    Thanks for the list. A few comments, observations, nit pics, etc.

    -Crawford is no longer a Ray.
    -Alex Rios looks a little out of place there although I grant you he does steal bases. Even still I’d certainly think Heyward would take his slot given that gaudy projection.
    -Also surprised not to see Andres Torres here.
    -It’s Travis Snider, not Snyder.

  4. William said...

    I’m stunned no one has jumped all over you for where you put CarGo and Hamilton! Not that I am going to, because I’m just not going to pay what I think they’ll go for. I couldn’t agree more about Braun, largely because he is the definition of strongly balanced. That said, I would put Crawford higher, because while he is certainly not what you’d call balanced, he does have a good probability of having decent power to go along with all those steals and runs, which I think will be so high that he is worth a premium despite the lack of total balance.

    And as a flyer, I might take more of a shot at Adam Jones than your list would have him, though I of course can understand the caution… but then again, there were reasons he went for as much as he did last year…

  5. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Oops! Thanks for pointing that out. Fixed

    Because Ibanez is an aging health risk with declining power and contact. I do not think he is worth rostering this year, but heck, maybe I’m wrong. His upside is super limited at this stage in his career. Oliver projects 19 HR, a .262 AVG, less than 75 R/RBI. Bill James thinks likewise. I concur, but think that’s his ceiling.

  6. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Cody Ross is not remotely rosterable. Maybe in NL only. He’s not even top 70 in my mind. Torres might make a OK OF5 (10/10 capable, but without AVG or RBI potential), but he’s barely top 70 in my view. Again, different scenario in NL-only

  7. Jeffrey Gross said...


    I hate Delmon Young. I do think his ceiling is 20-25 HR. He whiffs too much, but no K% translation. This guy is not Big Daddy Vladdy. Last year was a fluke in my eyes.

  8. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Thanks for the heads up. I can’t believe I made those errors on Cawford and Snider.

    See my above comment on Torres. OF is deep enough that a 10/10 OF who can’t likely hit .260-.265 is passable in mixed leagues.

    Rios is a 20+/20+ capable OF, able to hit .285+. He’s got 30/30 potential. Thats what you want in a player.

  9. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Thanks for not jumping me. I like cargo and hamilton, but I’ve ranked them based on realistic 2011 projections, not their outstanding 2010’s. I love CarGo, but he’s a .285 hitter with poor OBP skills, not last year’s .330 or whatever it was kind of hitter. As the OBP falls, I expect him to get about 5 less SB. I am expecting a 25-30/25ish season from him. Still great, but he belongs where he is ranked.

    Re: Crawford, people have been touting “his power” for years, but I still have yet to see it. At this point in his career, there’s no power upside. At least not for a Lefty playing at Fenway.

    Not a fan of Jones either. I recognize his potential, but not a fan of his downside, aka the last season and a half.

  10. Ethan said...

    Surprised that Fowler isn’t on the list here … he would be towards the bottom for sure but I would place him above most guys in your bottom 15.

  11. Jeffrey Gross said...

    Still too worried about Fowler’s P.T. in the OF. I debated ranking him, but he’s really only 10-15/25 capable if given a full time job. Part time, I say meh to his production line.

  12. Joe S. said...

    Delmon Young. Do most guys have FLUKE seasons at age 24? That doesn’t seem reasonable. High school draft picks are more difficult to track growthwise, right? And for power, growth occurs in ages 25 – 30, right? That would make it look pretty standard.
    I think Delmon is a jerk in real life which turns folks off. Also he has probably been a draft pick of yours and dissapointed big time at some point. Am I wrong? With his hype and his underachievement this is widespread and EMOTION begins to play a large role in our evaluation. It’s like betting on the Jets if you’re a Jets fan. Difficult to be objective. Not a crime and probably the case with most of us at some point in player evaluation (e.g. I’m a Mets fan so I don’t want to think Heyward is Ted Williams). Please tell me if these are valid arguments. Thanks you.

  13. Jeffrey Gross said...

    People have fluke seasons at all ages

    Over the past 3 years combined, here are the leaders in swings-and-misses Mark Reynolds (17.5%), Ryan Howard (15.3%), Josh Hamilton (14.1%), Carlos Pena (13.7%), Alfonso Soriano (13.5%), Adam Jones (12.9%), Delmon Young (12.7%), Jack Cust (12.6%), Aaron Rowand (12.4%), Corey Hart (12.3%). Dunn only swings and misses (11.7%), while Vlad does so less than 11% of the time.

    Now I think we can all agree that Delmon Young is not Josh Hamilton. Notice anything about the rest of this list?

    Delmon Young does not walk, I think is going to translate out in to more strikeouts in the immediate future, and his AVG will fall. I expect a .280/320/.470 season tops, with plenty of downside to spare

  14. Ethan said...


    Understand concerns about PT, but Fowler is a projected starter (with maybe a bit of a rotation).  Bill James projects 145 GS/575 PA’s.  Put that way, if he starts 145+ games he makes the cut, right?  For my money, I’d take his upside over most of those retreads (Sheehan has him as a breakout player for 2011).

  15. Jeffrey Gross said...

    Well even Bill James only expects 7 HR, 18 SB and a .285 AVG with lack luster (a very poor 46 RBI total) out of him.

    I think Fowler will be a nice source of R/SB who won’t hurt you in AVG, but he’ll hurt your RBI totals and maybe even HR count

  16. Jeffrey Gross said...

    IF fowler plays full time and is expected to hit 10+ HR, howevr, he’s probably in company with Adam Jones’ value ranking (#38-42 area).

  17. Sal said...

    I might be put in a position where I have to make a decision between keeping Rios or Weeks. Who would you keep given the following:

    6×5 (+OPS), 4 OF league (Rios would be the third OF I keep), and 2B and MI positions (no more reliable option to keep besides Weeks).

  18. Jeffrey Gross said...

    Weeks. I’d say Weeks is the more risky player, but 2B is shallow and your comments make it seem that 2B is very shallow in your league. You are more likely able to find a good OF4 than a good 2B and the differential between Rios and Weeks does not offset that gap in my mind

  19. Sal said...

    Thanks. There are only 7 players kept so the top options (Cano, Utley, Kinsler, Pedroia, Phillips, and Uggla) will all be kept. Beyond that, everyone on your 2B rankings will likely be available. Still Weeks in that case?

  20. Sal said...

    Thanks again. Rios really scares the heck out of me though. His second half was so painful (I play in a H2H).

  21. DrBGiantsfan said...


    Cody Ross’ average line for the last 3 years:  .266/.321/.457 with 20 HR’s.  It takes more than 1 hand to count how many players on your list have a worse projected 2011 line.

  22. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Maybe my hate is irrational. I’ve twice owned young before and twice been burned. but my hate stems more from the fact I think he is a low OBP, mediocre AVG guy with modest power, than the fact that he cant improve. I evaluate downside as much as upside. I will concede he’s flashed more power in recent years, but no projection system on the market see’s him hitting even 22 bombs.

    Bill James, who overestimates hitters production like crazy every year, expects 19 HR(and 8 SB for some reason…despite 7 over the past 2 seasons…). Oliver thinks 17. ZiPs 18.

    Ill try and address my comments in full later this evening. I have my GF telling me to get off the computer right now….

    I appreciate your readership, sorry if i seem too disagreeable here

  23. Trey said...

    Wow, Oliver must have been hanging out with Bill James a lot this off season.  Some of these projections seem awfully optimistic, including those for Heyward, Stanton, and even my dynasty cornerstone, Justin Upton.  Upton’s slash looks terrific, the best I’ve seen of any system yet, and Stanton with a .600+ SLG?
    No chance D. Brown hits those Bill James numbers…he’s a top candidate for bust, at least in 2011, for me. 
    Thoughts on Oliver’s optimism for these players?

  24. Jeffrey Gross said...

    @Trey, Oliver’s research indicates players peak at age 25ish. Performances like Stantons at what, 21?, show ceiling.

  25. David said...

    Why no love for Austin Jackson?  Bill James predicts 95 runs, 28 steals with a .297avg.  Even if you’re skeptical about a lower OBP, still should get more play than Crisp, Rajai, and a few others hitting in front of M-Cab, V-Mart, and Magglio with his minor league track record consistant with his rookie performance.

  26. Jeffrey Gross said...

    Austin Jackson I feel might hit 280-85 (good LD clipper), but will post a low OBP that will limit R/SB.

    xBABIP pegs his 2010 talent line @ 0.263/0.318/0.370
    Oliver: .273/.328/.382, 6 HR, 18 SB

    James tends to be overoptimistic on hitters.

  27. Joe S. said...

    I agree that Delmon Young is no Josh Hamilton. Hamilton’s first big league season he was 26 yrs old. Young will turn 26 at the end of the 2011 season. Pedigree is much different though, right? Hamilton was the #1 pick overall in 1999 and D. Young was the #1 overall pick in 2003.

    Before his “breakout” year Young had 1741 ML
    ABs and a .290 BAVG over that span.

    Now look at Young’s HR rates

    2006 – 2008 (age 20 – 22)
    1346 / 26 =
    1 HR every 51.7 A.B.s

    2009 (age 23)
    395 / 12 =
    1 HR every 32.9 A.B.s

    2010 (age 24)
    570/ 21 =
    1 HR every 27.1 A.B.s

    Does that look like a progression or an aberration to you?

    And unless you think he is going to regress at age 25 and with 2200 at bats under his belt where is the .280 hitter you mentioned?

    And your first post regarding him started with ” I hate Delmon Young”. You’re telling me you are not emotional about this player?

    The swing and miss rates are a useful guideline for most players but you are being obtuse if you don’t recognize that there are exceptions. Your sample and stat was pretty arbitrary you must admit. Walking a lot is not a requirement for someone to have a high BAVG.

    Before during and after the 2009 season my brother and I had the exact same debate over Kendry Morales. Some guys are aggressive and don’t fit your mold. Your type of analysis probably said Cahill and Pelfrey would stink last year because they don’t really account for player development. It’s why even the most hardcore sabremetrics GMs stil keep those “dumb” scouts around.

    BTW I do enjoy your column and find it interesting but I can’t stand this argument you present.

  28. aladou said...

    Just curious—when people say that James projections are optimistic, is it 1) that they assume too little injury time, so that in aggregate they are too high since invariably some players lose time, or 2) that individual players’ projections are generally too high even when they don’t lose significant time?

  29. Killface said...

    Yikes. So am I to understand that this entire list is based on personal bias?  Player projections based on personal opinions regarding management (Jennings) and past grudges (D.Young)???  Well, I guess thanks for letting us know to not take any of this seriously.
    I’m sorry, but to list Jennings that high without any info on him other than “well, they let Crawford walk so he must be awesome” is ludacris.  And don’t throw his minor league numbers at me.  I know them.  Expecting this kid to be the air apparant to Crawford is not only unfair, it’s unrealistic.
    .240 80R 7HR 55RBI 28 SB is a realistic projection, which puts him outside of 50, not within the top 25.  Cmon man.

  30. Jeffrey Gross said...


    It means that James’ rates and totals tend to sell high. He tends to overestimate power, AVG, RBI and often even SB.

  31. Jeffrey Gross said...


    My rankings are not based soley on personal bias. They are evaluated in light of projections, peripherals and expected playing time. I then apply personal judgment if I disagree with any of the above. Rankings are personal, inherently. No one said to be a ranking slave. This is merely my index of value and no one claims you need to accept it. Feel free to disagree as you wish.

    But when Jennings whoops your butt and Delmon Young underwhelms in 2011, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

  32. Jeffrey Gross said...

    Again, just to end all I am going to say on the topic of Delmon Young. the HIGHEST expected HR total from any projection system out there is 21, with most topping out at 19/20. This guy isn’t nick markakis, who is often overspent on. But hey, if you want to spend big on a .280/19 HR guy, that is your choice.

  33. Ed D. said...

    Whenever I see a stat trend that someone describes as “power on the rise”, I try to replace it with “true power talent less than last year’s power display”.  Delmon Young is a fascinating player to project in 2011.  He has a number of limiting issues as noted above, but his pedigree always makes me second guess my pessimism.

    I did a quick lookup of <25-year-olds with two years of improving AB/HR rates and found the following (data 1993-2009):

    Year AB/HR
    — ——
    Y1   40.8
    Y2   28.2
    Y3   22.4
    — ——
    Y4   24.0

    So, even though that power profile is a bit heftier than what Delmon has shown so far, there is something to the idea that he might hold his ground in 2011 in the power department.  Normally, I would be on regression all the way, and was actually surprised at what the data showed in this case.

  34. Pops said...

    “Balance is the key to a successful fantasy baseball campaign because it simultaneously fills out categories and diversifies risk. While some like to invest in single-stat commodities with higher upside, I will take two more balanced players.”

    While I agree with your point, please explain how Colby Rasmus is “specialized.”  In my opinion, he is a guy that can do exactly what you described above.

  35. Jeffrey Gross said...


    You raise a great point. I misspoke in how i described Rasmus and I will fix it. Rasmus is a balanced option, BUT he is a AVG killer in my view (he’ll hit .250-60 next year). Thats why he’s ranked OF3, not higher

  36. Shauntell said...

    Sorry to come back to Delmon Young, but for me there is no reason he should be put way behind guys like Markakis. Let’s compare the two:

    Markakis: – power on the decline in his prime years (12 HRs last season)
          – 2010 xAVG .286
          – runs & RBIs should rise back up a bit, but plays on a crap team, has to hope Roberts gets on base to get RBIs

    Young: – Power on the rise,
        – still young, (getting better),
        – only 3 “lucky” homers out of 21
        – plays on good team, gets Morneau back
        – 2010 xAVG .300

    I’d say SBs are a wash, but everything points to the fact that Young has improved in a big way and should be at least be as good next season.

  37. Pops said...

    Thanks for the clarification, Jeffrey.  I’m looking forward to a big season from Rasmus.  Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions.

  38. emoti-conman said...

    Just caught a typo in your rankings.  Jay Bruce, Mike Stanton, and Drew Stubbs are ranked 15-17 instead of 35-37. You may want to fix that before people read the rankings and think you’re crazy.

  39. Joe S. said...

    Not to beat a dead horse, but I just think that Delmon Young’s value may well be with his BAVG in ‘11. If you look at the brutal sterech that Young had in ‘10 he was hitting w/o Morneau, Mauer, and Thome in the lineup. I think hitting #4 was overwhelming for him and if he doesnt have that pressure you could see him in the top 20 for bavg.

    btw i agree with you Stanton and Stubbs rtankings, those guys have ceilings that make it worth it.

  40. Jeffrey Gross said...

    I’m sure this piece of news will make all my haters out there ecstatic, but I’ve moved Delmon Young up in the rankings. He is now top 50.

  41. Anthony said...

    These rankings don’t do much for me, as it seems they’re mostly geared for general 5×5 Roto leagues, and I play in leagues that count 2b/3b/OBP. You have a ton of players too high while a ton are too low, again this is probably because you don’t play in a league that counts doubles, triples and on base %. The rankings overall aren’t THAT bad, but nothing I could use for my leagues.

  42. Jeffrey Gross said...


    Sorry to hear. Just bump the OBP guys up. Manny/Bautista are that much more valuable, as would be Bay, Abreu, Gardner, and Morrison. Delmon Young, in your league, can probably go to hell.

  43. Jeffrey Gross said...

    I like the prospect of getting McCutchen, but do not overpay. He’s really just Carl Crawford with a .285 batting average. Not a fan of paying big for Arroyo or Minor for 2011 (love Minor for 2012 and beyond). Franklins not worth much and closers are very fungible.

    What would you have to give up for Stubbs and McCutchen? I’d rather have Dom Brown and Pagan than Tabata. Brown is a must keep in my eyes

  44. Josh said...

    One immediate problem is that we can’t keep players that aren’t on the ML roster come opening day. I know it’s only a slight question mark, but the Phils aren’t totally in agreement that he’s ready—Amaro was talking about sending him down again.

    I had in mind trading Pagan, Bernadina, and Seth Smith (3, 5, 1 dollar, for 2, 2, 1 year respectively) for Stubbs (17 dollars, 2 years), and Garcia, Leake, and Fowler (5, 5, 1 dollar for 2,2, 1 year) for McCutchen (5, 1)

    This would make it Dom Brown, CarGo, McCutchen, Stubbs, Castro, Prado, Wainwright, Chacin, and 2 to pick from Minor, Franklin, Arroyo, and Torres.

    Does that seem like overpaying for Stubbs and/or McCutchen? I want to build around cheap speed and power, so both those guys qualify to some degree. Pagan I don’t know if I trust, though he has value. Maybe him + Garcia would be enough for McCutchen, leaving me with Fowler to keep too.

    Appreciate the help.

    P.S. I like Tabata. Do you think Pagan + Minor would hypothetically snag him ($3 and $5 for 2 years each for Tabata’s $5 salary for 2 years).

  45. Jeffrey Gross said...

    I’d make that deal. But that’s just me. 2 years of Stubbs is certainly worth what you are giving up. I like Pagan (i’m a cubs fan, never understood why we just gave him to the mets), but am always skeptical of his type of hitter.The only guys I honestly like in either deal is Pagan and Garcia. These rest are fungible, even in NL-only. So just ask if you are willing to part with both of them for mccutchen and stubbs. Call me crazy, but I’m not a fowler believer. Thats why i left him off my top 60.

  46. Josh said...


    I’m in a 4×4 NL Only, with a $260 cap and 10 keepers per each 10 teams.

    My surefire keepers are Wainwright for $25, CarGo for $5, Prado for $5, Starlin for $5, and Chacin for $5 (the last 2 for two years).

    I’m thinking of packaging a bunch of guys (I have about 17 keepers) for McCutchen, Stubbs, and Tabata, as well as pitchers. Is that the right move, considering the fact that I have Pagan for $3, Torres for $5, Dom Brown for $5, Jaime for $5, Leake for $5 (all for 2 years), as well as Ry Franklin for $6, Mike Minor for $5, and Bronson Arroyo for $4. How much, wild guess, do you think I’ll have to dole over for 1 year of McCutchen at $5?

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