There was a time that second base was viewed as one of the weaker positions in the league. At this point that definitely doesn’t hold true in the American League. Most people wouldn’t be disappointed with having any of the Top 9 as their starter, and the next three have potential as well. Let’s take a look at how things shake out:
- Robinson Cano – New York Yankees
- Dustin Pedroia – Boston Red Sox
- Ian Kinsler – Texas Rangers
- Ben Zobrist – Tampa Bay Rays
- Jemile Weeks – Oakland Athletics
- Jason Kipnis – Cleveland Indians
- Dustin Ackley – Seattle Mariners
- Kelly Johnson – Toronto Blue Jays
- Howard Kendrick – Los Angeles Angels
- Johnny Giavotella – Kansas City Royals
- Sean Rodriguez – Tampa Bay Rays
- Gordon Beckham – Chicago White Sox
- Jason Kipnis or Dustin Ackley? Dustin Ackley or Jason Kipnis? The two youngsters are linked together closely as we head into 2012. Which would you rather own? The Rotoprofessor staff recently weighed in and it was a clean sweep in favor of Kipnis. Take a look at why everyone felt that way by clicking here.
- The top three options at the position all reside in the AL. While, for me, it is Cano, Pedroia and then Kinsler, there definitely is room for debate. However, the one thing that will always remain constant for me is that Kinsler is a distant third behind the other two. I know he’s a 30/30 player who is going to score 100+ runs at the top of the Rangers lineup, but he has never found a balance between power and average. He’s hit 30+ HR twice in his career, yielding averages of .253 and .255. He just has to swing for the fences too much to get there, limiting his ability to hit for a strong average. For more on my thoughts of Kinsler, click here.
- We all know the hype that surrounded Howard Kendrick and the 18 HR he hit in 2011 is just going to make people believe that he’s finally reached the expectations. However, his consistent groundball rate of over 50% shines serious doubt that he can replicate that type of power. He posted a 16.5% HR/FB rate, his career high by a great deal. Don’t overpay for the hype.
- Does anyone believe that Gordon Beckham is going to finally reach the potential we all heard about? He’s now played over 100 games in three straight seasons failing to hit more than 14 HR or better than .270 (he’s had years of .252 and .230). Opportunity is going to keep him as a low-end option, but that’s about it at this point.
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Make sure to check out all of our 2012 rankings: