Third Base Consensus Ranks for the Second Half

By now, you might have a favorite ranker among the four of us. That’s fine, we’re adults. We’ve gathered to give you four options for a reason. In fact, we’ve gathered these four guys in particular for a reason.

Jeff Zimmerman primarily uses ZiPs rest-of-season projections, with a few tweaks, and so he’s our Sober Suzy. ZiPs does use information from this year, weighted against information from past years, and it does include playing time projections, but it does not get caught up in the excitement of a player in a breakout. Zach Sanders has his own projections, which are more intuitive, and he uses his value calculator to stack the players up against each other. On the other end of the spectrum, you have me and Mike Podhorzer. We are more intuitive, and yet we have different ideas about the players and different levels of cynicism.

Taken as a whole, you should get a reasonable set of rankings that doesn’t get too caught up in a hot month, or too upset about a bad start. That’s the aim.

You’ll see that Zimmerman likes David Freese a little less than the rest of us, for example. And that he likes Chris Davis a little more. Interesting to find these two so close to each other. One has little power and should have a good batting average. The other has power and only power — and some years a good enough batting average to make it work. Both are flawed. And sandwiched in between them is a normally steady Eddie in a new park that loves righty power — Kevin Youkilis. That trio should inspire some conversation.

Add in your opinion (and your appraisal of your league’s opinions) and the puzzle should be complete. Good luck with the second half.


FanGraphs Consensus Rankings:
Third Base
New Last Player Name Eno Sarris Mike Podhorzer Jeff Zimmerman Zach Sanders
1 1 Miguel Cabrera 1 1 1 2
2 2 Jose Bautista 2 2 2 1
3 3 David Wright 3 4 3 3
4 6 Adrian Beltre 6 5 6 6
5 4 Hanley Ramirez 4 3 5 11
6 5 Brett Lawrie 5 8 4 8
7 11 Pablo Sandoval 7 7 9 7
8 21 Mark Trumbo 9 11 7 4
9 15 Edwin Encarnacion 8 6 14 5
10 8 Ryan Zimmerman 10 10 12 9
11 14 Mike Moustakas 12 13 10 10
12 9 Alex Rodriguez 11 12 13 12
13 12 Aramis Ramirez 13 9 11 15
14 18 Martin Prado 15 15 15 14
15 7 Michael Young 16 14 16 21
16 10 Evan Longoria 14 23 8 25
17 16 Chase Headley 19 26 19 13
18 19 Mark Reynolds 20 16 17 30
19 13 David Freese 18 19 30 18
20 20 Kevin Youkilis 17 20 24 26
21 26 Chris Davis 21 17 18 31
22 47 Trevor Plouffe 22 24 25 19
23 17 Emilio Bonifacio 23 25 28 16
24 35 Kyle Seager 27 29 20 24
25 42 Will Middlebrooks 25 21 32 23
26 25 Pedro Alvarez 24 31 21 28
27 22 Chipper Jones 28 27 33 17
28 43 Todd Frazier 29 34 22 22
29 24 Mike Aviles 30 28 23 27
30 28 Jed Lowrie 26 18 46 20
31 23 Daniel Murphy 31 30 27 41
32 27 Ryan Roberts 34 38 31 32
33 36 Casey McGehee 33 40 37 29
34 40 Alberto Callaspo 32 41 35 33
35 37 Chris Johnson 37 36 29 40
36 30 Placido Polanco 38 32 38 36
37 44 Stephen Lombardozzi 37 43 36 34
38 34 Sean Rodriguez 42 33 42 37
39 41 Wilson Betemit 43 22 43 48
40 45 Jordan Pacheco 39 44 39 35
41 50 Jose Lopez 36 48 26 47
42 39 Lonnie Chisenhall 35 42 34 51
43 31 Scott Rolen 47 35 48 43
44 48 Chris Nelson 41 46 41 45
45 46 Alex Liddi 40 45 40 50
46 38 Juan Uribe 50 37 51 39
47 29 Danny Valencia 44 51 44 42
48 42 Brandon Inge 48 39 49 46
49 33 Ian Stewart 46 53 47 38
50 49 Elian Herrera 45 47 53 44
51 43 Chone Figgins 49 49 50 52
52 44 Jimmy Paredes 51 50 52 49
53 32 Brent Morel 52 52 45 53




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


28 Responses to “Third Base Consensus Ranks for the Second Half”

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  1. Ned Colletti says:

    Uribe should be SO MUCH higher. Come on guys, don’t you remember his 2010? Nobody even ranked Jerry Hairston Jr? Buuuuullshit!!!!!!

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  2. James says:

    Pedro Alvarez is only one spot ahead of Placido Polanco according to one of you? Say what you will about Alvarez, but at worst, he’s a watered down version of Adam Dunn. At best, he continues to build on his hot past month (.294, 8HR, 26RBI, top-20 rank in fantasy) and blossoms into a star. Meanwhile, Polanco (.266, 2HR, 18 RBI for the season) continues to lose playing time for the flioundering Phillies, and offers almost no upside.

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    • Jay29 says:

      At worst? I think, at worst, Pedro Alvarez strikes out every other plate appearance and gets sent to the minors. At his worst he can be literally the worst hitter in baseball. And I’m not just being pedantic.

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    • batpig says:

      Pods has stated in many fantasy articles that he thinks many fantasy analysts underrate the impact of batting AVG when doing rankings, so I think this is a reflection of that.

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  3. kid says:

    I couldn’t give away Michael Young if I tied a $100 bill to his back.

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  4. kid says:

    No love for Plouffe, eh? Behind Reynolds, Crash Davis and Headley is pretty disrespectful for a guy who could hit .270/30 by the time all is said and done.

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    • thalooch says:

      Love me some Plouffe too, but these rankings have to be conservative. I think his lack of track record is what has him so low. If he keeps it up, he’ll move up for sure.

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  5. Andy says:

    But what about Adrian Gonzalez????

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  6. ChuckNChino says:

    If Tulow is down in the mid-20-somethings for SS, how can Longoria be mid-teens? Not sure he even makes it back this year… I see at least 5-6 guys ranked BELOW him, that I would gladly take. SELL MORTIMER, SELL! ZIPS (R) shows 242 PA’s — no way he gets to that number.

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    • batpig says:

      well the problem is (stop me if this sounds like a broken record) that JZ uses ZiPS ROS without adjusting for playing time, thus him ranking Longo at #8 for the position. This screws up the rankings quite a bit because of the averaging.

      ENO – do you guys use a simple arithmetic mean to average the consensus rank?

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      • Eno Sarris says:

        He does some adjusting, and ZiPs does some adjusting too. I know where you’re headed, but I value ZiPs RoS enough (with JZ’s adjusting) to leave it as a simple average.

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      • batpig says:

        if he does adjusting, how does Longo still come in at #8 for the position when he’s not due back until August? And Tulo still at #11 at SS, with Lowrie down at #32? methinks he’s not adjusting enough.

        ZiPS RoS does some PT adjustment but it’s basically weighted averages, it cannot operate with real world information (i.e., player X is expected to be out until this date). Projections systems are notoriously weak at projecting playing time, as it’s something that is often not predictable statistically and based on real world decisions by managers.

        Take Lowrie for example — based on his past history of part time play mixed with injuries, and statistical projection is going to ding him heavily for playing time. But external factors have changed, he’s now a starting player and should easily blow past the 48 games played and 186 AB that ZiPS RoS projects. The impact on his counting stats will be huge if he plays 70 games instead of 48 in the second half.

        I do think there’s value in the “dumb” projection as a statistical hedge against the subjective biases of human rankings, but sometimes you need to adjust when you have better information than the computer.

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      • Jeff Zimmerman says:

        I should have Longo at #11 or one plus the number of teams in the league. He should be top 3 when he returns, so pick up a replacement level 3B for now and use him when he gets back.

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  7. hernandez17 says:

    Michael Young being as high as he is relative to Plouffe and Alavarez makes this list look a whole lot like a preseason ranking. It’s like big first halves were discounted entirely. There are several 3B in the top 15 that I wouldn’t touch with a flagpole.

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  8. Tom says:

    Why is Encarnacion ranked above Trumbo in the first base rankings but below him in the third base rankings? Eno in particular has them switched in his ranks.

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  9. ThirteenOfTwo says:

    Seager’s outdoing Lawrie in HR, RBI, and 2B while posting a BABIP of .272, 30 points lower than his mark from last year, which was in turn lower than everything he ever did in the minors. Plus eligibility at other IF positions… No love?

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    • batpig says:

      the question is who would you rather have GOING FORWARD. Seager’s been in a freefall for over a month. Plus Lawrie has literally a FIFTY point edge in AVG. Just look at their ZiPS RoS if you want a sense of the reason for the gap in the rankings. The big takeaway is that Lawrie is likely to be better going forward, whereas Seager is likely to be worse…

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      • ThirteenOfTwo says:

        Seager’s “freefall” is due to a delightful .224 June BABIP, followed by a .182 mark in July, both spurred on by his LD% going through the floor. After having matched his 2011 BABIP numbers (~.305, nicely in line with league average) in both April and May, he was maimed by Safeco in June.

        A .224 BABIP is almost never sustainable. Seager is likely to regress strongly back towards his April/May performance.

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  10. Mario Mendoza of commenters says:

    More irrational love for Hanley.

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    • batpig says:

      irrational? you are aware this is fantasy right? and that Hanley, even without the .300 AVG, is still a 4-category stud?

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      • Mario Mendoza of posters says:

        No, I’m not aware that he is a 4 category stud. Because he’s not.

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      • Mario Mendoza of posters says:

        He’s even worse in OBP & Ottt leageus.

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      • batpig says:

        OK, who’s the irrational one?

        Hanley’s on pace for 90/20/80/25. What 3B below him on the list can match that production?

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  11. juan pierres mustache says:

    you guys should go back when all the final numbers are in at the end of the year and do a notgraphs piece on the most hilariously incorrect comments about the rankings

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  12. MustBunique says:

    Zim, I’m with you on the E5 regression train.

    PS Throw some fire on that green shading next to Freese’s name.

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  13. Seth says:

    In what _possible_ universe is Kyle Seager ahead of Casey McGehee. Have you seen how McGehee is playing? Not to mention that you have the jobless Todd Frazier, the non-3B Aviles, the platooning Daniel Murphy, and the absolutely _abysmal_ Ryan Roberts ahead of the guy who’s been as hot as any 3B in baseball over the last 30-45 days. Are you guys serious with this?

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