[hitter_list list_id=”19883″ include_stats=”1″ season=”2018″]
Welcome back to Hitter List. Every Wednesday during the regular season, I’ll rank the current value of the top 150 hitters for the remainder of the year. Use these rankings to help get a sense of both a player’s expected performance and his trade value in your fantasy leagues moving forward. They’re constructed with 12-teamer, H2H, 5×5 leagues in mind; adjust as needed for your specific setup. Position eligibility does factor in to a degree.
As a reminder: There’s a ton of baseball left to be played, and these are rest of season rankings. We’re interested in the long view ’round these parts. That said, adjustments to the List were more aggressive this week and you can expect that to hold in the weeks to come. With that should come the acknowledgment that small shifts are often as much a consequence of other players’ more drastic movements as anything else. Put another way, please do not @ me if a guy moved up like two spots even if he’s failed to get a hit in the last couple games. I do, however, welcome more substantive grievances in the comments.
On to the highlights!
- Injury roundup: The hits just keep on coming, with multiple marquee names facing lengthy absences. A.J. Pollock was off to an incredible start, rewarding those who invested an early pick despite the injury history. He broke his thumb on Monday night and will miss the remainder of the first half. Also likely out until July is Adam Eaton; the Nationals’ outfielder underwent ankle surgery after a lengthy diagnostic process that frustrated fantasy owners. Adrian Beltre and DJ LeMahieu had both only recently returned from injury before having to go back on the DL this week. Beltre re-aggravated his prior hamstring strain, while LeMahieu suffered a sprained thumb. Yoenis Cespedes is healthy enough to pinch-hit, but the Mets placed him on the DL Tuesday morning as his sore hip has not improved. Miguel Cabrera remains out after experiencing soreness in his back and hip during rehab of an injury to neither of those parts of his body, which is just great. The big story, of course, is Robinson Cano. Owners had already braced for a lengthy absence after an errant pitch broke the veteran’s hand, but they’ll be waiting even longer than anticipated. Cano was handed an 80-game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance.
- New to or back on the List this week: Mitch Moreland, Ryon Healy, Nick Markakis, and Gleyber Torres. Moreland and Healy are both riding hot streaks that likely won’t last, though Moreland’s plum spot in a dangerous Boston lineup could continue boosting his counting stats even after he cools off. I still can’t wrap my mind around what’s happening with Markakis, but the results have been there and the peripherals pass the smell test.
- Willson Contreras has logged on. The Cubs catcher entered play last Wednesday hitting .230/.315/.354 with just one home run. Three games later, he’d quadrupled his homer total, more than doubled his RBI, and brought his triple-slash right in line with expectations at .281/.352/.516.
- Christian Villanueva to slump at some point, but this cold streak was particularly brutal. Villanueva was definitely on the chopping block this week as he entered Tuesday’s game hitless in his last 36 at-bats. He finally snapped that skid, going 2-for-3 with his 10th homer of the year. That’s just enough to earn a reprieve, though his place on the List remains in jeopardy.
Thank you for finally dropping Braun!!
I admit it was overdue.
Hold Braun over Teoscar, Duvall, Gardener, Cordero or Buxton? Everything about Braun feels like age and injury have finally caught up with him. 4 for 33 in the month of May. What do you think?
They’re all pretty bunched together in the rankings. Nothing wrong with betting on any of them, really. Buxton’s the speed play, Gardner for runs, Duvall for power, Franchy and Teoscar the pop/speed combos. Team needs are a fine tiebreaker if you’re torn.
Thx for the response. I grabbed Teoscar for the upside I’m a sucker for potential – ha) as you mentioned, the other guys are all pretty well known quantities. Keep up the good work.
Great to see most of my guys moving up. So, compared to Brandon Crawford, Kinsler is the better option ROS. But if I only plan to hold him for another month or so, might I be better off with Crawford temporarily or his good hitting will likely be much more short-lived?
If you’re not planning to roster either in a month regardless, then by all means ride the hot hand.
Not seeing very much from the Rangers….Mazara and Gallo not withstanding. Thisclose to unloading all my shares in Odor and the Dentist. Neither showing much at this point. Not crazy to grab Harrison of the WW when he gets back I would imagine. What about this kid Niko Goodrum from Det. Seems to do a bit of everything. Mallex is available and appears to do everything the DDS was supposed to do, right?
It’s hard to give up on Odor because even last year when he was a huge AVG/OBP liability, he still gave you 30/15 with decent run production, and he’s still only 24. As for DDS, not sure what you were expecting but he’s doing exactly what I figured on: .260ish average, around 100 run/50 SB pace, the occasional bonus dinger. Plenty of value in that. Nothing wrong with Mallex if you just need a change and/or buy the AVG. I personally do not, and he’s hitting at the bottom of a lousy lineup.
With the way Braun has been DTD, is he even worth holding in a 10-team redraft H2H weekly lock?
It always depends on the replacement options, but I think it’s fair to consider moving on in shallower formats, particularly a weekly league. I rank with daily leagues in mind because I think A) they’re more common and B) they should be more common because weekly leagues are bad.
Some of your rankings are completely divorced from reality. Markakis is a top 10 hitter right now but you just put him on the list?? In the 140s? You should stop clinging to your preseason rankings.
Well of course they’re divorced from reality, they’re fantasy baseball rankings.
Dad jokes aside, where would you have him? Markakis hasn’t been this good in…ever, and the last time he was close to this level was a decade ago. I am impressed by the improvement in already-good plate discipline and the significant increase in launch angle suggests that some of this run is sticky. But I still anticipate a fairly significant amount of regression. You evidently feel otherwise. And time may prove you right, but by then he’ll have moved up the List significantly because I may be dumb, but I ain’t stupid.
Also, to be pedantic, Markakis is a top 15 hitter right now.
I think Yuli Gurriel deserves to be on this list. If you squint hard enough you’ll be able to see what I’m talking about.
He’s a great source of Rs, RBIs, and batting average.
You’re able to squint very hard.
What are your thoughts on Marwin? I have him and I’m enthusiastic about your 99 ranking. Not sure why you have him so high. Thanks in advance for your feedback?
Being honest, I probably ought to have dropped him this week, and definitely will next time if he doesn’t show anything. He’s had a couple of 3-4 game bursts over the last few weeks, the next one needs to develop into sustained production.
He’s currently my first guy off the bench. I have Semien at SS (2 run tater off Sale tonight) so I’m holding on to Marwin because of his positional flexibility. Its a 6×6 H2H league with OPS. I’m just having a hard time with his High K rate and misserable OPS.
I have J.D. and would like to add Moreland for a mini-stack when they are in the lineup at the same time, and bail on Marwin. Moreland would be my first guy off the bench. Your thoughts kind sir?
I’ve got Sanchez, Healy/Zimmerman, Odor/Asdrubal, Moose, Correa, Ozuna, Upton & a better than avg staff but can’t buy a win. Trade Ozuna & Moose?
16 team league, Teoscar’a my 3rd OF’er
How much does the 2017 season and prior continue to weigh on these rankings? I don’t understand how Ozuna can be 100 spots ahead of Cron when he’s sour as grandmas fupa fold and Cron’s consistency is increasing his value significantly. When you compare Rhys and Cron, they’re 2018 production and fantasy contributions are almost equal. Why not have the list represent the current season’s situations better, instead of it taking career values, ROS projections and keeping guys in a place they shouldn’t be. That would make this list a much more useful tool for evaluating trades. Goldy does not have the value anywhere near your #20 ranking. Maybe I need a primer to better understand the way you are valuing these hitters. Nothing but love
If you owned Ozuna would you accept a straight up trade for Cron? I certainly wouldn’t, based on track record but also the fact that you drafted Ozuna in a high round and the Cron owner plucked him from the wire last week. 2018 will have its share of breakout hitters but you can’t give up on established hitters after a month and a half. I owned Machado last year and he was hitting around .200 for the first couple months, but he heated up significantly later and he’s performing huge so far this season too.
Agree with most of this, though I would caution against putting much stock in the initial investment. In redraft leagues, it doesn’t really matter what you paid to land a player once the games are being played. You don’t want to compound interest on sunk cost.
Just looking at what a player has done this season is a mistake, and it wouldn’t make for a terribly interesting List. You can easily sort leaderboards on FanGraphs or any of the major fantasy platforms if all you want is a ranking of 2018 performance. You do have to consider all those other factors. Track record, scouting reports, age, team/park context…all the pieces matter. Even when struggling, Goldy gets a longer leash than some Quad-A jabroni because he’s been elite for years. Is it possible that Goldy forgot how to hit and/or won’t rebound this season? Sure. Is it likely? I doubt it. Is Cron suddenly a stud after years of middling performances? Again, possible, but I’m not counting on it. Perhaps you have more faith in either or both scenarios, which is fine.
Eric Thames looked like a monster at this time last year – that didn’t really pan out. I don’t think it’s unfair to put the burden of proof on players who don’t have a track record of success. We’re only a quarter of the way through the season. As we progress, current performance will naturally take on more weight in these rankings. If you think I’m not putting enough emphasis on it right now, that’s fine – as Jules Winnfield once said, this is just where you and I differ.
Got offered Chris Archer for Miguel Cabrera. I’ve got plenty of cover at 1B, but do you see Archer being worth it?
I can get behind that. Miggy’s health is going to be an ongoing problem from the looks of things.
I’m still Looking to pull the trigger on Moreland and drop Marwin to add to my already having J.D. I don’t see Hanley on the List. Batting in the heart of a great offensive lineup, what are your thoughts on him and is he worth a SP4 or Sp5 such as a Manaea, Mikolas or J. Gray? 6X6 H2H with QS and I’ve already accumulated the most W’s, QS’s, and have the best ERA to date. Thanks again for the feedback.
Hanley is at # 84.
Are we certain Domingo still belongs on this list?
12 team h2h 5×5 cats
My Puig and Archer for their Polanco and Dee Gordon? The joy of dumping Archer and his volatility outweighs losing Puig and the hot run he’s on.
Baseball is such an interesting game.
Yeah! you said right