This article is the third in a series of articles where I am looking back at my pre-season rankings. Today, I look back at my third base rankings. Gotta tell you, this is a learning experience, as ranking hitters is not easy.
I ranked Alex Rodriguez as the top third baseman and he certainly was not the same hitter he was in the past as he "only" went 30-125-74-.270-.341-.506. The RBIs were nice, but many fantasy owners expected more than 30 HRs in 2010.
Another third baseman I was wrong about was Mark Reynolds. I bought into his huge 2009 season where he went 44-102-98-24-.260-.349-.543. He responded by hitting 32 HRs, not bad right? He drove in 85 and scored 79. I'll take that. But he stopped stealing bases, as he only stole 7 bases this year, and his BA was atrocious. Reynolds hit .198-.320-.433 in 2010, and could find himself as a platoon player by mid-season 2011 if he can't hit for a better BA.
A few other guys I ranked high, yet underperformed in 2010 were Aramis Ramirez, Pablo Sandoval and Gordon Beckham. Ramirez hit for solid power (25 HRs, 83 RBIs), considering he was injured alot and only had 466 at bats. Sandoval's over-aggressiveness at the plate finally hurt him as he hit just .268-.323-.409 after hitting .330-.387-.556 in 2009. He's another guy who could find himself in a platoon or bench role if he doesn't turn things around at the plate.
I was down on Met's third baseman David Wright coming into the 2010 season, but did say this about him:
I rank David Wright 5th because I think he can rebound to maybe 20 HRs in 2010. That along with the 25+ SB potential, a .300 BA and hopefully, 90+ RBIs is valuable. But should he return to hit less than 20 HRs in 2010, he could drop out of the top 10 for me. He can't put up another 10 HR/72 RBI line this season.
Well, Wright hit .283-.354-.503 with 29 HRs, 103 RBIs, 87 runs scored and 19 stolen bases, so I was in the ballpark with my prediction. He could be the top-ranked third baseman going into the 2011 season.
I was high on Red Sox third baseman Adrian Beltre coming into the 2010 season as well, and wrote the following:
A couple guys coming off injuries are the Braves Chipper Jones and the Red Sox Adrian Beltre. Both will be undervalued in 2010 drafts, and could have bounce back seasons. I could see both approaching 25 HRs and 90 RBIs in 2010. Jones, if he proves healthy, should hit .300 again.
Beltre made me look good, as he was probably the top ranked third baseman in 2010, as he hit .321-.365-.553 with 28 HRs, 102 RBIs, and 84 run scored. Beltre seems to turn things on in his walk years, and this year was no different. I am not sure he can duplicate his 2010 numbers in 2011 should he not re-sign with the Red Sox. As a Dodgers fan, I hope he returns to LA.