Late last week we began releasing our Top 40 outfielders for 2019 (click here for the Top 20). Who were the names that fell just short of our Top 20? Who in the next wave could push for a Top 20 spot by year’s end? There’s definitely some intriguing options in the next wave, many of which could easily have a big season.
With that being said, here are a few things to remember as you review the rankings (and if you want to see even deeper rankings, make sure to order our 2019 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide that includes a Top 30, by clicking here):
- A player being ranked #3 doesn’t mean you should draft him in that spot. In most cases you shouldn’t have to, it just shows the potential value that he holds.
- These rankings are based on our projections and expected production for 2019.
Who are the names we should trust? Who should be ignored? Let’s dive in and take a look:
21. Eddie Rosario – Minnesota Twins
22. Wil Myers – San Diego Padres
23. George Springer – Houston Astros
24. Tommy Pham – Tampa Bay Rays
25. Nick Castellanos – Detroit Tigers
26. Lorenzo Cain – Milwaukee Brewers
27. Ender Inciarte – Atlanta Braves
28. Justin Upton – Los Angeles Angels
29. Stephen Piscotty – Oakland A’s
30. Nomar Mazara – Texas Rangers
31. Starling Marte – Pittsburgh Pirates
32. Andrew McCutchen – Philadelphia Phillies
33. Michael Brantley – Houston Astros
34. Aaron Hicks – New York Yankees
35. Mallex Smith – Seattle Mariners
36. Dee Gordon – Seattle Mariners
37. Trey Mancini – Baltimore Orioles
38. Hunter Renfroe – San Diego Padres
39. Joey Gallo – Texas Rangers
40. Austin Meadows – Tampa Bay Rays
- One of the bigger risks on this list may be Hunter Renfroe, who faces competition for playing time in San Diego. Assuming he gets regular at bats there is no questioning the power (he hit 13 of his 26 HR on the road in ’18) and he also showed an improved strikeout rate as the season progressed (20.9% in August, 22.9% in September). He still may never post a strong average, but if he’s in the lineup there’s going to be more than enough production (think .250+ with 30+ HR).
- Austin Meadows has long been hyped, but he was never able to get an opportunity in Pittsburgh. His trade to Tampa Bay should finally give him regular AB, and with his strong approach (13.0% strikeout rate, 7.5% SwStr% at Triple-A) and potential to reach 20/20 he’s a player who could flourish.
- Staying in Tampa Bay, we already have seen one reclamation project take his opportunity and figure it out. After struggling in St. Louis Tommy Pham landed with the Rays and promptly hit .343 with 7 HR over 39 games. While he isn’t quite that good, he has proven capable of posting a .300/20/20 type season before and there is every reason to think that he’ll get back there again.
- When will Nomar Mazara finally put it all together? We all hoped it would be 2018, but instead he stagnated to the tune of a .258 AVG to go along with 20 HR and 77 RBI. There were injuries, which caused part of the problem, but a 55.1% groundball rate would mean continued struggles to generate home runs. It will be interesting to see if he can make the adjustment and carry a strong first half (.291 with 15 HR over 353 AB) for an entire season or if it was more the aberration.
- Will Nick Castellanos finally be traded? That’s the hope, and depending on where he lands would obviously impact his potential value. For now we’ll have to wait and see, as there are a few other dominoes that may need to fall first.
Sources – Fangraphs, Brooks Baseball