OT: Fantasy Baseball Rankings Series, Second Base

Second Base

1. Robinson Cano - Cano is absolutely the cream of the crop at the position and an easy first round pick. He has hit over .300 with 25 home runs, and 100 runs in every one of the last 4 years. He's also averaged over 100 RBI the last 4 years as well. He's the true elite of the position.
2. Ian Kinsler - He's passed on the injury-prone tag with two 700+ plate appearance seasons. Those two seasons, he's averaged 26/26 with 113 runs and 74 RBI. He is a bit of a batting average risk as he bounces around in average and is just as likely to hit .250 as he is to hit .300. The rest will be very solid, though.
3. Brandon Phillips - He's not a young guy any more, in his age 32 season this year, but he's been a 15/15 guy with high runs and solid RBI each season with a solid average. He's not going to be a .300 guy, but he's going to be solid all across the board, and he always gives his owners 600 plate appearances.
4. Dustin Pedroia - He's shown a lot of nicks and bumps the last few years, and his numbers aren't at the elite level of 2008-2009, but he's still a guy who will give you solid average, decent runs, and 15-20 homers and steals when he's healthy.
5. Ben Zobrist - Zobrist brings added value to some players with multi-positional eligibility, but really, 3-6 in the rankings can be mostly interchangeable depending on what you're looking for. Zobrist will be about .270ish with 15/15 and solid runs/RBI. This will be his age 32 season, so you could start seeing him go downhill at some point, but he should be solid in 2013 still.
6. Jason Kipnis - Kipnis of the 3-6 group is the high-upside choice. He blew up the first half of the season, but he went downhill from there. That said, he still had 14 homers and 31 steals. He's not a .300 guy, but he shouldn't kill your average, and he has the possibility of going 20/30, which is tremendous, but he also has a bad habit of going through major streaks in his minor league career, and you saw it in his second half of 2012.
7. Rickie Weeks - People who didn't see his second half might have missed out. He had such a poor first half that most had written him off for the season. In just the second half, Weeks put up a .261 average with 13 home runs and 10 steals. He's not going to blow you away with average, but he's a solid power/speed guy who gets good runs numbers.
8. Chase Utley - His name carries a lot more weight than his performance does at this point. That said in his half season of 2012, he produced 11 homers and 11 steals. His health is a huge question mark going forward, so he has to stay here in my ranks, but if he plays a full season, he could put up great numbes, so he's a solid mid- to late- round risk.
9. Aaron Hill - This is a personal cheeseball of mine. I know he's struggled many times over, but his 2012 season showed what he can do in a solid ballpark. He's had at least 26 home runs 3 of the last 4 years. His batting average can be a bit of a worry, dropping below .250 2 of the last 4 years. He is in a great park for his abilities, but there are still worries to be wary of.
10. Jose Altuve - The little engine that could. He's packing a ton into that little frame. What was surprising was the 7 home runs, but he is a very good contact hitter with good speed that should provide a .280+ average with 30+ steals. He's a perfect late round guy that could provide you a solid production for cheap.

Unlisted, underrated: Neil Walker - Walker isn't going to hit 20 home runs or steal 20 bases, but he's a solid contact hitter who will give you 12-15 home runs, steal 5-10 bases, and solid run totals. He's the type of guy you can pick very late that won't hurt you, even if he doesn't blow you away.

Unlisted, overrated: Danny Espinosa - He's a 20/20 guy, certainly, but not much else. His average hurts you horribly, though, and his runs/RBI are subpar for a guy getting 650 plate appearances. Espinosa seems to get a lot of hype and even top rankings at the position, but he just doesn't measure up when he's compared with others.

Position strategy: This position drops off a TON after the top 6. I would be willing to pay the extra to make sure I had a top level guy here. There are some bounce back guys and underrated guys that could pop here, but this is a position that could be very difficult to find value in, so I would be willing to draft a little early or pay extra for an elite 2B for 2013, unless you completely rock every other position and can afford a possible mediocre position.

This FanPost does not express the views or opinions of Talking Chop.

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