Fantasy Baseball: Ray's Shortstop Rankings for 2010

Continuing in our Top 20 rankings, I discuss the Top 20 shortstops for 2010 fantasy drafts. Hanley Ramirez is the top shortstop in baseball, but the gap between him and guys like Troy Tulowitzki and Jimmy Rollins is narrowing, in my opinion. I have written here previously that Hanley's HR and SB trends are going in the wrong direction, and he could be a fantasy bust in 2010. Now the possibility of that happening is very small, but every year one of the first round picks has a down year-see David Wright and Jose Reyes.

Here are the Top 20 shortstops for 2010:

Name AB HR R RBI BB SO SB AVG
Hanley Ramirez 576 24 101 106 61 101 27 0.342
Troy Tulowitzki 543 32 101 92 73 112 20 0.297
Jimmy Rollins 672 21 100 77 44 70 31 0.250
Derek Jeter 634 18 107 66 72 90 30 0.334
Jose Reyes 147 2 18 15 18 19 11 0.279
Yunel Escobar 528 14 89 76 57 62 5 0.299
Stephen Drew 533 12 71 65 49 87 5 0.261
Alexei Ramirez 542 15 71 68 49 66 14 0.277
Jason Bartlett 500 14 90 66 54 89 30 0.320
Asdrubal Cabrera 523 6 81 68 44 89 17 0.308
Miguel Tejada 635 14 83 86 19 48 5 0.313
Elvis Andrus 480 6 72 40 40 77 33 0.267
Marco Scutaro 574 12 100 60 90 75 14 0.282
Rafael Furcal 613 9 92 47 61 89 12 0.269
J.J. Hardy 414 11 53 47 43 85 0 0.229
Alcides Escobar 125 1 20 11 4 18 4 0.304
Everth Cabrera 377 2 59 31 46 88 25 0.255
Orlando Cabrera 656 9 83 77 36 71 13 0.284
Ryan Theriot 602 7 81 54 51 93 21 0.284
Erick Aybar 504 5 70 58 30 54 14 0.312

There are six guys on this list who can steal 30 bases or more, and maybe 7 guys who could hit 20+ HRs in 2010. I see Jimmy Rollins improving in the BA category in 2010, while maintaining his 20 HR/30 SB pace. I don't see Jason Bartlett hitting for the same power in 2010, nor will he steal 30 bases, but he could steal 20.

Derek Jeter stole 30 bases in 2009. Where did that come from at his age? I can see his BA and SB totals dropping a bit in 2010, but he could hit the 20 HR level. One of these years, Yunel Escobar is going to break out, and I can see him going 20-100 in the next few seasons.

Stephen Drew should have a bounce back season as I think he could return to the 15-20 HR level with a .280 BA in 2010. Another guy I see bouncing back is the Twins shortstop J.J. Hardy. Hardy suffered through a horrendous year in 2009, but I can see him returning to his 20 HR output. His BA, BABIP and HR/FB rates were close to career lows in 2009. I see him regressing to his mean and putting up a season similar to his 2008 season where he went 24-74-.283.

A sleeper not listed is Nationals shortstop prospect Ian Desmond. Desmond is battling veteran Christian Guzman this spring. Even if he doesn't win the job out of spring training, Desmond should be the Nats shortstop by the end of the season, so he is one to watch.

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