a jim jividen blog

Here's the thing. I'm watching one of these shows on the Cooking Channel featuring food trucks. There's a Scottish expat making fish and chips; in a thick brogue he somewhat wearily explains his irritation with Americans who habitually order a side of tartar sauce: "tartar sauce is basically gherkins." That's this blog. I claim no particular insight, no revelation. If you enjoy the flavor, great, but this blog is basically gherkins.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Top 10 MLB Players at Each Position, 2011 ed.

The MLB Network did a series of shows over the winter breaking down the current "top 10" players at each position.  I have U-Verse, and we've just added MLB Network, so I was unaware of these lists.

But it's a good idea, so I'll play.  As I see the re-airings of their shows, I'll edit in those choices in parentheses for comparison.  So, again, these rankings are mine - the MLB Network rankings are in parentheses, or will be once I see the episodes.

Top 10 Catchers in MLB Right Now
1. Joe Mauer (2)
2. Brian McCann (3)
3. Buster Posey (2)
-The greatest catcher, by career value in San Francisco, in SFG history is Tom Haller.  He is not long for that spot.  Note that I have my guy ranked 3rd whereas MLB has him second.  This should disabuse you of notions I'm playing favorites.
4. Carlos Santana (6)
5. Geovany Soto (unranked)
6. Carlos Ruiz (7)
7. Kurt Suzuki (9)
8. Yadier Molina (5)
9. Matt Wieters (10)
10. Miguel Montero (unranked)
MLB#4 Victor Martinez
MLB#8 John Buck

I'd have Martinez ranked 5th if he were still a catcher; I didn't consider him eligible for this list.  

Top 10 First Basemen in MLB Right Now
1. Albert Pujols (1)
2. Joey Votto (4)
3. Miguel Cabrera (2)
4. Mark Teixeira (5)
5. Adrian Gonzalez (3)
6. Prince Fielder (7)
7. Ryan Howard (6)
8. Justin Morneau (9)
9. Paul Konerko (8)
10. Derrek Lee (unranked)
MLB#10 Kendrys Morales

Top 10 Second Basemen in MLB Right Now
1. Dustin Pedroia (3)
2. Robinson Cano (1)
3. Ian Kinsler (6)
4. Dan Uggla (4)
5. Rickie Weeks (7)
6. Kelly Johnson (9)
7. Ben Zobrist
8. Chase Utley (2)
-That's an injury ranking.  
9. Brandon Phillips (5)
10. Aaron Hill
MLB#8 Brian Roberts
MLB#10 Neil Walker

Top 10 Shortstops in MLB Right Now
1. Troy Tulowitzki (2)
-My spell check red flagged it, suggesting Berkowitz (like the Son of Sam) or tuberculosis 
2. Hanley Ramirez (1)
3. Yunel Escobar (unranked)
-The guy they have third I don't have ranked at all.  We'll see at year's end who was right.
4. Alexei Ramirez (7)
5. Jose Reyes (4)
6. Rafael Furcal (unranked)
7. Stephen Drew (8)
8. Starlin Castro (10)
9. Jimmy Rollins (6)
-Harold Reynolds said Rollins was one of the six best players in all of baseball.  I am concerned that Harold Reynolds has been duped into watching tapes from 2007 and thinking they are current games. I would like to offer him the entire National League vs. the Rockies for the pennant and put up our respective salaries.  
10. Cliff Pennington (unranked)
MLB#3 The Late Derek Jeter
MLB#5 Elvis Andrus
MLB#9 Marco Scutaro

Top 10 Third Basemen in MLB Right Now
1. Evan Longoria (1)
2. Kevin Youkilis (4)
3. David Wright (6)
4. Ryan Zimmerman (2)
5. Alex Rodriguez (3)
6. Adrian Beltre (5)
7. Pedro Alvarez
8. Chipper Jones
9. Pablo Sandoval
10. Scott Rolen (8)
MLB#7 Mark Reynolds
MLB#9 Placido Polanco
MLB#10 Casey McGehee



The Top 10 Left Fielders in MLB Right Now
1. Ryan Braun (1)
2. Carlos Gonzalez (3)
3. Josh Hamilton (2)
4. Carl Crawford (4)
5. Matt Holliday (5)
6. Ryan Ludwick
7. Jason Bay (8)
8. Luke Scott
9. Martin Prado (7)
10. Alex Gordon
MLB#6 Delmon Young
MLB#9 Carlos Lee
MLB#10 Raul Ibanez





The Top 10 Center Fielders in MLB Right Now
1. Matt Kemp
2. Alex Rios
3. Curtis Granderson
4. Chris Coghlan
5. Andrew McCutcheon
6. Denard Span
7. Adam Jones
8. Shane Victorino
9. BJ Upton
10. Andres Torres

The Top 10 Right Fielders in MLB Right Now
1. Nelson Cruz (6)
2. Jayson Werth (3)
3. Jay Bruce (unranked)
-Similar to the shortstop ranking, they don't have Bruce ranked, and I don't have their top RF ranked.  We'll see at season's end who was right.
4. Mike Stanton (8)
5. Jason Heyward (5)
6. SS Choo (2)
7. Andre Ethier (5)
8. Jose Bautista (4)
9. Nick Swisher (unranked)
10. Torii Hunter (unranked)
-My guess is they'll put Hunter in their CF rankings.
MLB#1 Ichiro Suzuki
MLB#9 Nick Markakis
MLB#10 Justin Upton
-Gonna take a lot of singles for Ichiro to be better than Jay Bruce in 2011.

The Top 10 Pitchers in MLB Right Now
1. Felix Hernandez
2. Tim Lincecum
-I had Halladay ahead in my top 100 overall, in fact, I've made multiple changes since then; were one to say I'm overly favoring my guy here I wouldn't necessarily disagree.
3. Roy Halladay
4. CC Sabathia
5. Cliff Lee
6. Justin Verlander
7. Josh Johnson
8. Jon Lester
9. Jered Weaver
10. Clayton Kershaw

The Top 10 Relief Pitchers in MLB Right Now
1. Joe Nathan
2. Heath Bell (6)
3. Mariano Rivera (1)
4. Joakim Soria (3)
5. Brian Wilson (2)
6. Aroldis Chapman (10)
7. Rafael Soriano (8)
8. Jonathan Papelbon
9. Jonathan Broxton
10. Matt Thornton
-Most relief performance is unreliable from season to season; it could be that Luke Gregerson is a better pitcher this year than Thornton, but it's a hard thing to forecast.  
MLB#4 Neftali Feliz
MLB#5 Carlos Marmol
MLB#7 Andrew Bailey
MLB#9 Jose Valverde