RotoGraphs Consensus Rankings: First Base

Thing might look a little different this year. We’ve got tools upon tools for your drafts this year, and they should be easier to get to now. But we will still do consensus rankings, and we’ll still do tiered rankings. Because it’s all helpful in different ways.

But it’s time for the consensus ranks first.

It’s also worth putting down on ‘paper’ why we do the consensus ranks the way we do them. We have Jeff Zimmerman, Mike Podhorzer and Zach Sanders submitting their individual ranks alongside mine for a couple of reasons. The first is that four is the minimum ‘n’ we can give you: more of a sample should give you a better ranking. It’s like a mini crowd-source. And the second reason is really the same, in an alternate package: each of us uses projections to a different extent, and each of us uses intuition and research to a different extent. And yes, we have the Steamer projection numbers listed here, but no, none of the rankings is solely based on those projections. In any case, you’ll get five numbers to look at, and you can choose which one you like.

To the first basemen!

There’s a lot of consensus near the top of this ranking, but look how quickly it all falls apart. The second half of the top twelve elicited very different opinions from our four rankers. You might be able to see why in the Steamer projections for some of them. Anthony Rizzo, Freddie Freeman and Edwin Encarnacion are all within a couple home runs of each other. But don’t stop looking there, spots 12-24 will probably be owned in most mixed leagues, too. Interesting to see how far the Yankee first baseman has fallen, no?

RotoG ES JZ MP ZS Name PA AVG R HR RBI SB
1 1 1 1 2 Albert Pujols 653 0.299 99 36 110 7
2 3 3 3 1 Prince Fielder 649 0.292 97 31 103 1
3 2 2 2 8 Joey Votto 629 0.298 92 26 87 5
4 4 4 9 3 Billy Butler 661 0.298 87 24 94 2
5 5 7 5 6 Paul Goldschmidt 594 0.268 78 26 87 11
6 7 5 6 5 Adrian Gonzalez 639 0.294 84 27 96 1
7 9 9 4 7 Edwin Encarnacion 558 0.265 76 27 85 6
8 8 8 11 4 Buster Posey 538 0.302 72 19 77 2
9 6 6 12 10 Anthony Rizzo 622 0.267 82 31 94 5
10 10 11 8 13 Allen Craig 546 0.290 73 23 79 3
11 12 12 10 9 Freddie Freeman 624 0.269 78 24 87 2
12 11 15 7 18 David Ortiz 501 0.279 70 22 76 1
13 13 10 13 16 Eric Hosmer 606 0.267 72 19 76 11
14 14 14 15 12 Paul Konerko 545 0.278 71 24 78 1
15 15 17 19 11 Joe Mauer 533 0.299 64 10 60 3
16 16 13 18 17 Ike Davis 638 0.252 79 30 91 1
17 18 21 16 14 Mark Trumbo 502 0.255 63 24 74 3
18 17 18 14 22 Mark Teixeira 573 0.259 77 27 85 2
19 19 22 21 21 Chris Davis 487 0.261 61 25 70 2
20 22 27 20 15 Adam LaRoche 561 0.258 68 23 77 1
21 20 23 23 27 Nick Swisher 615 0.259 79 23 82 2
22 21 28 17 28 Michael Cuddyer 459 0.276 57 17 64 6
23 25 26 22 30 Kendrys Morales 517 0.261 62 22 71 1
24 26 24 31 23 Michael Young 569 0.288 63 12 62 2
25 27 31 24 24 Todd Frazier 502 0.242 55 19 63 7
26 32 32 25 20 Carlos Santana 549 0.247 70 20 71 3
27 24 20 33 33 Brandon Belt 527 0.266 62 15 63 9
28 36 16 36 29 Daniel Murphy 626 0.286 75 9 57 6
29 23 30 27 40 Ryan Howard 524 0.248 66 26 77 1
30 38 37 26 19 Justin Morneau 464 0.266 55 16 59 1
31 37 19 34 31 Dustin Ackley 699 0.241 81 13 58 10
32 34 33 30 26 Garrett Jones 515 0.262 61 21 71 3
33 30 25 35 39 Corey Hart 481 0.259 59 19 66 3
34 33 29 37 32 Yonder Alonso 589 0.255 62 12 65 4
35 29 38 41 25 Adam Dunn 612 0.213 78 31 81 1
36 35 39 29 36 Mike Napoli 427 0.251 56 21 61 2
37 28 35 32 46 Lance Berkman 446 0.273 61 17 61 3
38 31 36 42 42 Logan Morrison 510 0.251 58 16 62 2
39 41 45 39 37 Brandon Moss 392 0.241 47 17 52 3
40 39 34 45 45 Jeff Keppinger 532 0.280 62 10 53 2
41 50 42 46 34 Adam Lind 387 0.260 46 15 51 1
42 43 44 43 43 Mitch Moreland 357 0.262 43 13 46 2
43 40 40 47 49 Mark Reynolds 531 0.225 66 25 70 2
44 42 49 40 50 Chris Carter 368 0.238 45 17 50 3
45 50 41 44 55 Tyler Colvin 390 0.256 45 15 54 4
46 50 52 48 47 Chris Parmelee 358 0.246 38 10 40 1
47 50 43 49 55 James Loney 451 0.266 48 9 47 2
48 50 47 51 51 Jordan Pacheco 323 0.275 32 5 34 3
49 44 48 54 55 Carlos Pena 567 0.210 67 23 68 2
50 50 51 50 52 Brett Wallace 370 0.253 41 12 44 1
51 45 56 53 54 Justin Smoak 331 0.228 35 10 36 1
52 50 55 52 55 Luke Scott 338 0.237 39 13 42 3

Others ranked by only one ranker: Carlos Lee, Casey Kotchman, John Mayberry Jr, Matt Carpenter, Mike Olt and Todd Helton.




Print This Post

Graphs: Baseball, Roto, Beer, brats (OK, no graphs for that...yet), repeat. Follow him on Twitter @enosarris.


47 Responses to “RotoGraphs Consensus Rankings: First Base”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
  1. lester bangs says:

    The first column centered would be nice (I know, I’ve got issues). Good luck this year, Fangraphers.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. Chief Keef says:

    Napoli below Ackley is relatively shocking, Ackley can’t hit and plays in Seattle, Napoli is playing first base in Boston…what am I missing?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  3. Mike610 says:

    mauer’s ranking continues to amaze me. Especially considering that if I end up with someone like dunn, than i’ve completely negated his strongest area of contribution.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  4. pogotheostrich says:

    Did Votto steal Zach’s girlfriend or something?

    +28 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • ManwichMan says:

      Yeah, a lot of Sanders’ other rankings don’t make much sense either. Posey (catcher in playing in SF) and Butler (Who isn’t in a great position for run production, and could easily end below .290 and 25 HRs) at 3/4. Konerko at 12, and Morneau above Teixeira (!). This is an extremely deep year, where babip and hr/fb luck will separate everyone in the end, but that’s why it really doesn’t make sense that he has guys at high risk positions, in bad ballparks, and weak lineups above others with similar, if not higher upside in better positions.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • Ender says:

        I can’t tell if you think 12 is too high or too low for Konerko since he is starting to decline and at his age it could be a sudden collapse. No reason at all to expect Butler to hit under .300.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Zach Sanders says:

      Factored in health concerns into his numbers. On a rate level, he’s where the other folks have him, but I’m just projecting less ABs.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • GilaMonster says:

        At least on Votto, can you explain health concerns on him vs. Pujols? Both had knee surgery, while Votto is 29 and Pujols is 33.

        However it seems like Pujols’s surgery was at the end of the season, so there was nothing for people to panic over for next season.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

      • jim says:

        i suppose, but to drop him all the way to 8th as a result? seems way too far

        Vote -1 Vote +1

  5. GilaMonster says:

    I think ZiPS projection for Pujols are more accurate and his 2013 season will be slightly better than 2012, but not by much due to age. He is in decline.

    As for Votto, I have no clue why projections are so bearish. He was off the charts last season and got injured. But wait…. After his injury he maintained a .408 wOBA without hitting a home run… That is ridiculous. As for power concerns, his HR/FB% was 19% prior to the injury and his FB% was unchanged.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  6. Anon says:

    Please tell me this is a badly titled post and other positions the player is eligible for are taken into account in the rankings, otherwise Michael Young over teammate Ryan Howard seems really really weird.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • grassyjones says:

      I agree about Young over Howard being off. Once again it was one person who ranked way off the others that put him in a weird place on the list.
      I personally think he should be up in the Chris Davis / Nick Swisher area.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Brad Johnson says:

      The Howard ranking caught me a bit by surprise, especially Zack’s ranking of #40. He’s a flawed asset and one I’m quite bearish on for 2013, but I don’t see much reason to be concerned about playing time, health, or power numbers. A 30 HR, 100 RBI season is quite possible.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  7. dl80 says:

    Just a quick question: why would anyone take Hosmer over Konerko? I get that Konerko has fewer projected PAs, but he also has more HRs, more RBIs, and a much better projected average, and only loses Rs by 1. Wouldn’t Konerko plus replacement (fantasy-level replacement, not real world) for a few games be worth far more than Hosmer? Or are the authors not going by the projections?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  8. MLB Rainmaker says:

    Goldschmidt’s elite ranking across all fantasy sites continues to amaze me. I don’t doubt he’ll hit 27HR, but I can’t believe he’ll get anywhere near 18SBs again in ’13 and its clear that a large part of his high valuation.

    I just can’t see him worth more than Adrian Gonzalez.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  9. Shawnuel says:

    Thanks for the perspective, Zach. I figured that was where you were coming from, as well as the lack of power when he came back last summer. If he answers those questions positively, he is a clear #1 for me.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  10. Shawnuel says:

    Likewise….if Berkman ends up healthy, I could see him rising at least 20 spots on this list.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  11. dtpollitt says:

    Glad to see Country Breakfast getting so much love this pre-season. Is there a better model of consistency than Butler? Fielder?

    I don’t understand the love for Edwin. I’m scared of him as a fantasy player, and will definitely not be drafting him. Why? I’d count last year as an outlier and not one that he can replicate again. 2012 saw a wRC+ nearly 40 points higher than his career average, 16 more homers last year than his previous high, ISO was 70 points higher than his career average, etc., etc. Edwin hit out of his mind last year, but I don’t see the signs that he’s going to be able to replicate anywhere near 2012 numbers. I’d rather take Rizzo, Craig, Posey, Ortiz, Freeman. I’d put Edwin around the 12-15 spot.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

      • GilaMonster says:

        Seeing the 3B/OF makes me sad because he lost this 3B eligibility in Yahoo leagues :(

        Vote -1 Vote +1

    • GilaMonster says:

      You are so down on E5, but the guys you list are also risky.

      Rizzo could have a sophmore slump.
      Craig is injury prone and hasn’t had a full major league season at 29.
      Ortiz is old and is coming off an awful injury.
      Freeman lacks a ton of power and and strikes out too much.

      Edwin has a floor of 85/26/85/.275 with 2012 season upside. A healthy Jose Bautista, Reyes, and Melky in front of him can only help.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • npmiller28 says:

        Craig is not injury prone. He severely injured his knee running into a wall in mid-2011 and recovery carried over into the beginning of 2012 (after a 3-HR World Series on a bum knee).

        None of his 5 minor league seasons games played suggest he was injured at all assuming ~120 games is a full minor league season.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

      • dtpollitt says:

        Good piont, GilaMonster. The risks of the guys I listed should be noted. I do think the upside of Edwin is the lineup that surrounds him. I do like the upside of Craig or Rizzo more than Edwin’s, however.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

  12. Cody says:

    I really enjoy Zach Sanders work, but he is clearly becoming the AJ Mass of RotoGraphs.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  13. Gentleman Ninja says:

    These rankings are bizarre. D Murphy over R Howard? C Carter with only 368 PA’s? I could go on, however I’ll leave some meat on the bone for the next guys in line.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Eno says:

      The rankings are not based on those steamer projections alone. We each have our own mumbers we ate looking at. Perhaps I should remove the stats if that’s confusing people.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  14. MDL says:

    “It’s like a mini crowd-source.”

    Now that would be a good idea! Hey Fangraphs, can you guys add a way for users to submit their own position rankings, so we can add a FAN column to these consensus rankings?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Eno Sarris says:

      Yes I love this. Great idea. Not sure it’ll happen this preseason, but I love it.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

    • David says:

      Couldn’t you just use ADP?

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • MDL says:

        That could work — best ADP for the position is ranked #1, next best ADP is #2, etc. But what site’s ADP would you use? I guess you could use the, um, average of a few sites’ ADPs or something like that.

        I would prefer the crowd-sourced approach because it would be Fangraphs-specific… and because I enjoy providing my input to the crowd-sourced features on this site.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

      • David says:

        I suppose its all about the tradeoff between n and quality of prediction, if you believe that fangraphers, or more specifically, the people who contribute to crowd sourcing on fangraphs are likely to provide much higher quality projections, then it would be worth ignoring all of the ADP data (maybe an average of ESPN and YAHOO?) and sacrificing your larger sample…

        Vote -1 Vote +1

      • tylersnotes says:

        ADP is the whole universe, where the fangraphs crowd is generally of different opinions than the average yahoo, espn, or even NLBR/MDC user.

        You could approximate this using fVAR against FANS projections, though. A bit more work on the FG end, but the data is already there. But being able to submit our own positional rankings data would be a blast and also go a long way to hinder my productivity even further.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

  15. NBH says:

    I don’t understand all the Ryan Howard hate this year. Yes, he is in decline and was always just a HR/RBI guy. But he played on one leg last year and still hit 14 HR with 56 RBI in only 71 games. Yes, his K% spiked and his ISO is trending down, but I would probably place him after Swisher.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • GilaMonster says:

      He is like Adam Dunn without the BB%,Hitters Park, decent offense…..

      Vote -1 Vote +1

      • tylersnotes says:

        he’s not as extreme as dunn. The bb% is a concern but outside of OBP leagues hardly matters and these rankings at least generally appear to be 5×5 roto format (although I don’t see that listed anywhere).

        CBP is less of a hitters park than US Cellular but is still a hitters park. The Phillies offense is not amazing but should be expected to be somewhere between 2010/11 and 2012. I think Swisher is a decent comp, where Howard is probably a bit riskier but also higher upside.

        Vote -1 Vote +1

  16. Zac says:

    Ugh, I hate catcher-eligible being listed among 1B (and I will hate Ryan Doumit’s inevitable appearance on the OF rankings). No one is ever sure how to rank them. Are we just ranking them as how they would be playing the 1B position? Are we ranking them as players overall (which is weird, because a big part of their value comes from the lower replacement level hitting of catcher)? Those players should be excluded from other lists.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Owen says:

      Yeah, this. I assume position eligibility is being ignored here, because otherwise Posey would be higher, no? I get including them for sake of completeness, and it’s possible that you end up with something weird like Posey, Santana and Ike (sounds like an old tv show) so you would conceivably want to use a catcher as a 1B. Anyway, some clarity there would be appreciated. (And this article is very helpful, especially to a first time drafter like me.)

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  17. theeiffeltower says:

    lol at Daniel Murphy and Dustin Ackley over Mike Napoli

    Vote -1 Vote +1

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>