2014 Rest of Season Rankings: Top 20 Shortstops

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

With the All-Star game closing in, now is the perfect time to start looking at our updated Rest of Season rankings.  Who’s worth buying?  Who isn’t?  Let’s take a look (the number in parenthesis was the players preseason ranking):

1) Troy Tulowitzki – Colorado Rockies (2)
2) Hanley Ramirez – Los Angeles Dodgers (1)
3) Starlin Castro – Chicago Cubs (9)
4) Ian Desmond – Washington Nationals (3)
5) Jose Reyes – Toronto Blue Jays (4)
6) Dee Gordon – Los Angeles Dodgers (29)
7) Jimmy Rollins – Philadelphia Phillies (12)
8) Alexei Ramirez – Chicago White Sox (18)
9) Jhonny Peralta – St. Louis Cardinals (17)
10) Alcides Escoabar – Kansas City Royals (13)
11) Elvis Andrus – Texas Rangers (7)
12) Asdrubal Cabrera – Cleveland Indians (10)
13) Jean Segura – Milwaukee Brewers (5)
14) Ben Zobrist – Tampa Bay Rays (8)
15) J.J. Hardy – Baltimore Orioles (14)
16) Jed Lowrie – Oakland A’s (16)
17) Erick Aybar – Los Angeles Angels (20)
18) Andrelton Simmons – Atlanta Braves (11)
19) Brad Miller – Seattle Mariners (15)
20) Xander Bogaerts – Boston Red Sox (NR)

 

Thoughts:

  • Ian Desmond has struggled with strikeouts this season, and it’s been a consistent issue (over 30% in all but one month).  While he’s continued to hit for power as well as chip in some stolen bases, it’s going to completely limit him from an average standpoint.  While it doesn’t erase his value, it could send him spiraling if the power were to dry up.
  • The season has been a bitter disappointment for Jean Segura.  While we all expected the power to regress, no one could’ve expected the average to plummet the way it has.  While we’d expect a better BABIP (.261), it’s not like he is a line drive machine (18.3% after an 18.0% mark in ’13).  As they always say, you can’t steal first base.  Until he shows signs of improving his average, his value is going to be limited.
  • Would it surprise you to find out that Alcides Escobar (.287, 2 HR, 28 RBI, 40 R, 21 SB) and Elvis Andrus (.269, 2 HR, 22 RBI, 49 R, 19 SB) have extremely similar lines thus far?  Which player has more upside moving forward?  It’s actually extremely close, though we do have to take into account Andrus’ history of regressing in the second half of the season.  That gives Escobar a slight edge for me, though it really could go either way.  We looked at this comparison about a month ago, coming to the same conclusion (click here to view).
  • J.J. Hardy has finally broken through in the power department, but he’s also benefited from a .335 BABIP despite a 17.9% line drive rate.  While there’s hope for more power to come, it’s hardly a given and there’s actually a good chance of an overall regression.
  • It’s easy to overlook Jhonny Peralta, who has contributed 13 HR based on a realistic 13.4% HR/FB.  Obviously that alone doesn’t justify pushing him up the rankings, but he owns a 21.4% line drive rate and just a .264 BABIP.  In other words, there’s a lot more upside in his numbers moving forward.
  • Everth Cabrera had performed poorly to begin with, and a trip to the DL with a hamstring strain just further hampers him.  If healthy he has the potential to make a significant impact, mostly with his legs, but that’s a big if right now.

Source – Fangraphs

*** Make sure to pre-order Rotoprofessor’s 2014 Fantasy Football Draft Guide!!  The guide comes complete with projections of over 350 players, expended rankings, sleepers, and so much more (including constant updates up until opening day).  For just $6 you will get everything you need to dominate your fantasy league and one lucky subscriber will win a free autographed Brett Favre 8×10!  For more information and to place your order, click here. ***

13 comments

  1. Todd says:

    Aybar has been very good this year, no faith he will continue? He’s almost on a 20-20 pace and in that lineup, will both score runs and knock in runs hitting 5th.

  2. S says:

    Surprised to see Aybar so low but I did just trade him for Jay Bruce so I hope youre prediction is right

  3. Rotoprofessor says:

    Aybar has been good, but it’s also easy to argue that we’ve seen the best we are going to see from him. Also hard to buy into big power numbers from him.

    BTW, love the trade of Aybar for Bruce!

  4. Charles Leroy says:

    Looks like Alcantara is staying up with the Cubs. If he stays in the majors ROS, where would he rank in this list? Thanks!

  5. Marky Mark says:

    Not counting Gordon, which SS is the best bet for the most SB’s the rest of the way? (and someone who won’t destroy my AVG & OPS ratios would be nice)

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      Best guess would be Reyes, but on the “lower” end it’s Alcides Escobar or Segura (right now I’d lean Escobar)

      • Marky Mark says:

        Wouldn’t have guessed Reyes as the top choice. His injury history and that turf in Toronto have scared me off him almost entirely…..but Reyes is a trade I could probably pull off actually.

        • Rotoprofessor says:

          Agreed that injuries are always going to be a concern, but he still has 17 SB thus far this season (right around where the others are). It really all depends on the cost.

          • Marky Mark says:

            The cost is the least of my concerns. I don’t care if I lose the trade on paper, so long as I get what I need. The deal would be Reyes for Kemp straight up.

            I’m in win-now mode and sitting in first, but middle of the pack in Runs and SB. I’ve got Braun/J.Upton/Ellsbury, so I can afford to deal Kemp. I’ve currently got Bogaerts/Betts as SS options, and obviously neither is getting the job done, so an upgrade there is needed. There’s not a better, equal, or even slightly lesser option than Reyes available via trade or WW. I wouldn’t keep Kemp next year anyway, just like I won’t keep Reyes, so I’m not even losing anything long-term here.

            All I have to do is hit accept. It seems like it should be a easy decision, as a healthy and productive Reyes would very much help….but I’m having a hard time convincing myself that’s what I’d be getting.

  6. Rotoprofessor says:

    Unfortunately with Reyes, you never know if he’s going to be healthy or not. At the same time, can you really say the same thing about Kemp?

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>