First Basemen: Early Top-10 for 2014

 

 

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Playoffs???? Oh, that’s right. The playoffs are happening. But don’t worry, fellow fantasy junkies. We’ve got you covered. Last week, Clave gave an early look at his Top-10 fantasy catchers. This week, I’ll take a stab at first base.

It’s very early and a lot can change this offseason. Feel free to voice your disagreements, or to tell me that you think I’m wonderful, at the bottom.

  1. Paul Goldschmidt Has shown improvement every year, and was pretty good to begin with. He’d need to get a little more selective to compete for a batting title, but I wouldn’t be blown away if Goldy won a Triple Crown at some point in his career.
  2. Chris Davis Don’t make the mistake of dismissing Crush as a fluke. Goldschmidt’s a better hitter, so Davis likely needs another HR gap of 10-15 to be ahead of him. But if he stays healthy, Davis can struggle in 2014 and still hit 40 dingers. We profile him here.
  3. Joey Votto The Cincy first baseman gets on base an awful lot. In that lineup, that translates to 100 or more runs. He’s also a fantastic hitter, so a .300 average is a worst-case scenario. He doesn’t have the power to jump the top two guys, but isn’t bad by any means.
  4. Freddie Freeman Remember, he’s just turned 24. Freeman has always been a high OBP and RBI guy. In 2013, he added 60 points to his batting average, without dropping any homers. The power generally comes in the mid-late 20′s, so don’t be surprised if he has a big jump in that category this year. We profile him here.
  5. Edwin Encarnacion Don’t kid yourself into thinking you’re getting a .300 hitter here, you’re not. Still, I don’t see him dropping below .265. That, with 35-45 bombs, is pretty potent from the first base spot.
  6. Prince Fielder Not quite the power juggernaut that averaged 38 homers from 2006-2011 in Milwaukee. Still, Fielder will play every day, and I expect a power resurgence in 2014. He’s just too powerful to not get to 30.
  7. Adrian Gonzalez He’s lost a lot with power, but you can count on 20-25 homers, 95-105 RBI, and a .290-.300 average. There are better first basemen, but you could do much, much worse. We profile him here.
  8. Eric Hosmer If you’re looking for a guy who finished 2013 in a big way, look no further. He’s a young version of Adrian Gonzalez, with more power potential. Not quite as reliable, so he falls in a spot behind him, but the better upside belongs to Hosmer. We compare him to Belt.
  9. Allen Craig Quite simply, an RBI machine. In the St. Louis lineup, that is sustainable. Craig has never played more than 134 games in a season, and that is a concern. Also, he’s not a big longball guy. But very solid in RBI and average.
  10. Brandon Belt Not unlike Hosmer, Belt’s had consistency issues, but finished 2013 on a high note. He’s consistently struggled keeping it together for a full year, but this is a guy to gamble on if you want to fill other positions first and then gamble on a young first baseman. We compare him to Hosmer.

Just missed: Albert Pujols (showing too many signs of decline, wasn’t having a great year before his injury We profile him here), Mark Trumbo (looks like this generation’s Adam Dunn), Brandon Moss (a powerful hitter but still a platoon guy) and Kendrys Morales (solid player, but doesn’t have tremendous upside).

Topics: First Base, Paul Goldschmidt, Rankings, Top 10

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  • labambasaurus

    wow really. pujols played half the season on one leg and was still on pace for 80 runs, 28 bombs and 104 rbi’s and you put Brandon freaking belt in front of him?!?!

    • http://fantasybaseballcrackerjacks.com/ Clave

      We hear you. Pujols is a Hall of Famer and and when healthy he could still put up numbers that will put him higher on this list.

      But he wasn’t healthy and he may not be. Potential versus actual, and all that.

      It’s an early list. It’ll shift as everyone’s health is evaluated closer to the season beginning. If the news is good from Albert’s knee and foot, he very well may be a sneaky steal as Nash eluded to when he profiled him this week.

      And it’s Mr. Brandon Freaking Belt to you. Overlook Belt at your peril! :)

    • mdixon85

      Yeah. It is early and that could well change by the time Spring Training rolls around. He’s just been moving in the wrong direction over the last few years, missing more and more time. Belt is moving in the right direction and should get a good spot in the SF order, which is really important there.

      Also, I really don’t like the .258 average from Pujols. I know that he can still hit for power. But he’s failed to hit .300 in each of the last 3 years, declining each time.

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