Raise your hand if you want more dynasty rankings? That’s right, we all love dynasty rankings. Last week we ranked both first base and third base. This week it’s time for middle infielders. The second base rankings and analysis are below, and shortstops will be released tomorrow.
Second base has been a headache this season. The elite options have been fine, but most of the other veterans seem to be having a down season. Luckily there have been some solid rookies like Ian Happ, and several other offensive minded options developing in the minors. This position might be all over the place now, but it won’t be for long.
Below the rankings are analysis on select players.
#1 Jose Altuve – Is there anything this little five-foot-six pint-sized ball of fantasy awesomeness can’t do? That answer is no. At least not from a fantasy perspective. The top second baseman in the game is putting together another monster fantasy season hitting .348 (third in MLB) with 14 home runs, 18 steals, and 64 runs scored. At just 27-years-old, we should see several more dynamite seasons out of Altuve. He is undoubtedly the top dynasty second baseman moving forward. The only one that could challenge his throne is number four on this list.
#2 Daniel Murphy – Think the Mets front office is still kicking themselves for letting Murphy walk? When talking about the best pure hitter’s in the game, Murphy’s name has to be in the conversation. All he’s done in 846 at-bats with Washington is hit .347. That’s all. He’s got plenty of extra base power too, combining for 41 home runs and a league leading 70 doubles since the beginning of the 2016 season.
Daniel Murphy gets a hold of a pitch in the 8th and drives a solo homer over the right-field wall, extending the Nationals' lead to 7-3!!! pic.twitter.com/n5f2tIjcQc
— TheRenderMLB (@TheRenderMLB) June 21, 2017
#3 Robinson Cano – It doesn’t seem like it but Cano is the old man in this top 10. There’s no reason to start dropping him quite yet as he’s still plugging along at age 34. His first two seasons in Seattle made many believe his days as a feared slugger were over, but Cano came roaring back last year with 39 home runs and 103 RBI. His hold as a top option might not be a long one, but for now, he’s still one of the top dogs at second base.
#4 Yoan Moncada – The temptation to put Moncada higher on this list was overwhelming. There’s just so much fantasy potential here. You name it, Moncada can do it in fantasy. Just look at his minor league statistics since the Red Sox signed him back in January of 2015:
2015 (306 AB): 8 HR, 49 SB, 61 runs. .278/.380/.438/.817
2016 (405 AB): 15 HR, 45 SB, 94 runs. .294/.407/.511/.918
2017 (300 AB): 12 HR, 17 SB, 56 runs. .287/.382/.457/.838
Moncada is becoming a more complete fantasy weapon this season. He’s a strong kid, so the power should continue to develop as he matures. There’s an incredibly high chance he passes Murphy and Cano on this list when I update these rankings next spring. He’s going to be a beast.
#5 Ian Happ – For some reason that I can’t quite put my finger on, Ian Happ just doesn’t get enough attention in dynasty leagues. Happ has accumulated roughly a third of a season of at-bats since his call-up. If you extrapolate his numbers out to a full season, you’d have 39 home runs, 93 RBI, 87 runs, and nine steals to go along with a .253 average. He’ll never win any batting titles, but he’s everything Odor is but with more batting average potential.
#6 Rougned Odor – If you ignored the average, Odor would be a couple spots higher on this list. Overall, his counting stats look almost as good as last season. It’s just the average that has suffered and limited his value this season. He’s currently on pace for 30 home runs, 70 RBI, 82 runs scored, and 16 steals. Unfortunately, those come with an underwhelming .215 batting average.
#7 Brian Dozier – Dozier is basically the veteran version of Odor. The counting stats are usually bountiful but the batting average year to year is limited due to the high number of strikeouts.
#8 Jonathan Villar – I feel like a broken record in this article. Villar is another case of “he’d be ranked higher is his average was better.” The 2016 season will probably go down as the best in Villar’s career. His 19 home runs and 62 stolen bases last year made him one of the most valuable weapons in fantasy. This year has been a different story. However, with speed being harder to come by, Villar is still plenty valuable. Hold tight on him and hope the batting average stabilizes.
#9 Dee Gordon – You know what you’re getting with Gordon. He’s a solid three category producer (AVG, R, and SB) but is non-existent in the power department. That’s never going to change.
#10 Ozzie Albies – You want speed? Albies has it. The young Curacao native already has 21 steals through 353 at-bats, and that’s just the beginning of his speed potential. Albies has the makings of a dynamic leadoff hitter that can hit for a high average, score a ton of runs, and provide a hint of pop as well. He’s not that far off from making an impact in Atlanta.
#11 Jonathan Schoop – If anyone thought Schoop’s breakout season last year was a fluke, he’s doing all he can to prove doubters wrong this season. Even though he’s a free swinger, he’s proving he can be a solid four category contributor, including batting average. It’s unconventional but has worked for his teammate Adam Jones. There aren’t many better power options at this position.
— Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) July 12, 2017
#12 Willie Calhoun – If you thought the Dodgers were hard to beat now, just wait until they start calling up their top prospects. Calhoun has a small but powerful frame and has been hitting homers in bunches this year. In 329 Triple-A at-bats, he has racked up 19 home runs, 59 RBI, and 23 doubles. He’s not just an all or nothing masher either. His average currently sits at .310 and he only has 45 strikeouts on the season. Calhoun definitely has the potential to be an elite dynasty option at this position.
#13 Starlin Castro – After watching Castro these past several years, he seems to be becoming a poor man’s Hanley Ramirez. He carries plenty of potential but doesn’t appear to always give full effort. That’s part of what ran him out of Chicago, and it will continue to limit his value moving forward.
#14 Jason Kipnis – A changing of the guard is happening at the keystone position. A lot of aging veterans, Kipnis included, are beginning their decline. The 2014 and 2015 seasons are looking like a better baseline for Kipnis’ expected production moving forward than last season does. He’ll be good for low double-digit home runs and steals, some runs, and a low average. It’s time to move on from Kipnis.
#15 Scott Kingery – Not many had heard of Kingery before this season. He’s making sure people know his name now. Kingery has busted out in a big way this season with a .310 average, 22 home runs and 52 RBI in 342 combined at-bats at Double-A and Triple-A. The Phillies are once again a pathetic team, so Kingery should get the call soon.
#17 Ian Kinsler – There haven’t been many more consistent power/speed threats over the past decade than Kinsler. Now in his 11th major league season, Kinsler has amassed 221 home runs and 218 stolen bases. However, this year has been a struggle for the 35-year-old. His average has dropped to .237 and he’s only on pace for 16 home runs and 12 steals. Every player has to decline eventually. That time appears to be now for Kinsler.
#18 Dustin Pedroia – Living in New England has allowed me to watch Pedroia play every day for the last decade. He’s a guy you love having on your team, but as he approaches his mid-30’s, his fantasy contributions are becoming limited. Count on a high average and a good amount of runs, but not much in way of power or speed.
#19 Javier Baez – Until he locks down a full-time spot, Baez is never going to fully reach his fantasy potential. Even then, he’s probably a poor man’s Dozier at best. There’s some potential here but don’t fool yourself into thinking he’s a fantasy stud waiting to happen.
#20 Scooter Gennett – Anyone named Scooter is okay by me. He’s turning into a decent hitter this season, as well. Granted, a quarter of his 16 home runs came in one game, but Gennett is proving to be a decent backup dynasty option.
#21 Devon Travis – There were high hopes in the fantasy world for Travis, but he hasn’t been able to live up to expectations yet. I’m starting to think he never will either. He’s young enough to prove me wrong, though.
#23 Keston Hiura – He’ll have a slight delay to start his pro career after needing Tommy John surgery, but Hiura was one of the most advanced bats in this year’s amateur draft.
#28 Shed Long – Some scouts have compared Long to Calhoun above. He’s an offense first second baseball with budding power. Double-A has been rough on him through his first 20 games at the level, but he’s a talented hitter than should be manning 2nd base for Cincinnati within the next year or two.
#31 Kolten Wong – Remember him? Wong was a rising dynasty asset just a few short years ago, but his development has stalled and even taken a few steps back. He’s hitting .300, albeit with not much else, in limited action this year but still has the potential to become a useful dynasty piece. Time is running out though.
Got a question about a player not covered here? Feel free to follow and ask me on Twitter @EricCross04. Thank-you as always for reading and check back next week for dynasty rankings on outfielders and catchers.