Jacob Dunne | February 12th, 2020
Third base gave fantasy owners a lot to be thankful for in 2019. The hot corner supplied elite power numbers, batting average, and even had a few players swipe 20-plus bases. Heading into the 2020 season, third base has everything you need to make a run at a fantasy championship.
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Don’t panic if you aren’t able to secure a top-tier third baseman in the early rounds of your fantasy drafts. There is plenty of power available in the middle-to-late rounds who can still help your squad. Keep in mind, there were a total of 16 third base eligible players who hit 30-plus home runs in 2019 and this year shouldn’t be any different. Let’s dive in.
The following rankings are based on 5×5 roto scoring. They are also based on redraft leagues. When a player gets a boost or drops in the rankings due to format or scoring, it will be noted with their outlook. Consistency, durability, and the ability to steal bases are also taken into account.Embed from Getty Images
Arenado is far and away the most consistent third baseman in Major League Baseball. Over the past five seasons, Arenado has averaged over 600 at-bats per year while hitting anywhere between 37-42 home runs and 110-plus RBI. He doesn’t steal bases (a little over 2 per year), but what he lacks in speed he makes up for in durability, home runs, RBI, and batting average.
2. Alex BregmanEmbed from Getty Images
Right behind Arenado is another durable third baseman in Alex Bregman. Bregman has managed to improve his overall statistics every year since taking over the starting third base gig for the Astros back in 2017. Not only did he up his home run total from 31 to 41 in 2019, but he also upped his walk total from 96 to 119. Being patient, powerful, and consistent is a lethal combination in fantasy. At age 25, his dynasty stock is pointing up.Embed from Getty Images
Rendon found a new home over the offseason joining the Los Angeles Angels. He is coming off a career-year where he hit 34 home runs and 119 RBI while sporting a .319 batting average. Those are elite stats. At the age of 29, he could be entering his prime. Even in a new uniform, I believe his gaudy 2019 stats will carry over to his new team hitting behind fellow Angel Mike Trout.
4. Jose RamirezEmbed from Getty Images
It was a tale of two halves for the former 2018 MVP candidate. In the first half, Ramirez hit only 7 home runs and 35 RBI in 317 at-bats. In the second-half, Ramirez exploded for 16 home runs and 48 RBI in just 165 at-bats. The rough start to the year was not ideal for the fantasy owners who invested a first-round pick in him, but he made up for it in the second half. He has a safe floor with his ability to steal bases. If he can carry that 2019 second-half momentum into the 2020 season, he has the potential to be a Top 10 overall fantasy baseball player.Embed from Getty Images
Like Bregman, Rafael Devers has improved on his overall statistics every year since being called up by the Red Sox three years ago. Last season, Devers hit 32 home runs and 115 RBI with a .311 batting average. He also stole 8 bases for good measure. Devers possesses the power to hit to all fields, and I see him producing similar numbers to what he did last season. Dynasty league owners need to take notice of this 23-year-old slugger.Embed from Getty Images
Suarez was a consistent source of power all year for the Cincinnati Reds belting 49 home runs and 103 RBI. To close out 2019, Suarez hit 10 home runs and 18 RBI while batting .337 over the last 25 games. He is as safe of a pick as they come when it comes to the power department at the hot corner.Embed from Getty Images
The San Diego Padres invested $300 million in Machado just to watch him hit a career-low .256 batting average in 2019. Despite the low batting average, Machado managed to hit 32 home runs and 85 RBI while sporting a .334 on-base percentage. His batting average and stolen bases should remain lackluster, but as long as he stays healthy, he’s a lock for 30-plus home runs and 100-plus RBI.
8. Yoan MoncadaEmbed from Getty Images
Moncada took a significant step forward in his third year in the major leagues. Not only was he able to raise his home run and RBI total, but he raised his batting average by 80 points. In 511 at-bats, Moncada hit 25 home runs and 79 RBI with a .315 batting average and .367 on-base percentage. I expect Moncada to keep building on his 2019 power numbers and stolen bases heading into his age-24 season. His dynasty arrow is pointing up.Embed from Getty Images
The former American League MVP has found a new home in Minnesota. Donaldson signed a four-year $92 million contract and is expected to bat cleanup for a talented Minnesota Twins lineup. Last season, Donaldson shook off the “injury-risk” tag by playing in 155 games for the Atlanta Braves while hitting 37 home runs and 94 RBI. If Donaldson can stay healthy, he is looking at another productive year hitting in the middle of an explosive lineup.
10. Max MuncyEmbed from Getty Images
Muncy has hit exactly 35 home runs in each of his first two seasons in the major leagues. He hits for a loaded Los Angeles Dodgers lineup and is first and second base eligible in most fantasy formats. Sign me up!
11. Kris Bryant
Bryant was able to bounce back last season after a shoulder injury cut his 2018 season short. He hit 31 home runs and 77 RBI in 2019. He’s a lock to produce solid fantasy numbers hitting in the middle for a talented Chicago Cubs lineup.
12. DJ LeMahieu
LeMahieu is one of the least flashy players on this list. While he doesn’t provide the power numbers that the top-notch third basemen above him provide, he makes up for it with elite production in runs, batting average, and on-base percentage. Expect LeMahieu to produce a lot of runs batting leadoff for the New York Yankees.
Guerrero Jr. had a ton of hype coming into the 2019 season. He mostly underwhelmed by only hitting 15 home runs and 69 RBI with a .272 batting average in 464 at-bats. He’s coming into 2020 as the unquestioned starting third baseman for the Toronto Blue Jays where he should be able to build off his 2019 numbers. I’m expecting the 20-year-old to hit 25-plus home runs and 90-plus RBI while keeping his batting average near .300. Needless to say, his dynasty stock is pointing straight up.
14. Matt Chapman
Chapman has an elite floor when it comes to runs, home runs, and RBI. Unfortunately, his batting average is nowhere near elite. If your team can weather the .250-.260 batting average, Chapman’s consistent production in all other categories makes him worth a mid-round selection.
15. Eduardo Escobar
Escobar came out of nowhere last season to hit 35 home runs, which completely demolished his previous career-high of 23. At the age of 31, I don’t expect his numbers to reach the gaudy 2019 level of production, but he should be able to produce respectable power numbers.
16. Mike Moustakas
Moustakas has found his power stroke over the last three seasons averaging 33 home runs and 89 RBI. He signed a multi-year deal with the Cincinnati Reds over the offseason, which should only help his power numbers moving forward playing in the hitter-friendly confines of Great American Ball Park. If you can swallow the inevitable .250 batting average, Moustakas should provide consistent power numbers for your fantasy team.
17. Yuli Gurriel
At age 35, Gurriel set new career-highs in every stat category last season. He hit 31 home runs, which was how many he had the previous two seasons combined. He is bound to regress, but I like his chances to produce very useful numbers hitting for a talented Houston Astros lineup. He also qualifies at first base.
18. Jeff McNeil
In his first full season as a starter, McNeil hit 23 home runs and 75 RBI while having a .318 batting average. His superb batting average alone gives him a high-floor heading into the 2020 season. I expect McNeil to hit around 20 home runs and 75 RBI while swiping at least 10 bases. His eligibility at second base and outfield increases his value considerably.
19. Tommy Edman
Edman spent the first 2 months of the 2019 season in AAA before being called up to be a utility player. He proved to be much more than that posting 11 home runs, 36 RBI, 59 runs, and 15 stolen bases in 326 at-bats. Edman is capable of giving your team a boost in runs, stolen bases, and batting average. He is also eligible at second base in most fantasy formats.
20. Justin Turner
Despite an inconsistent 2019, Turner was able to churn out 27 home runs in just 479 at-bats. Turner can help your team in batting average while providing decent power for your fantasy team.
21. Miguel Sano
Despite the recent signing of Josh Donaldson, the Twins still plan to keep Sano’s powerful bat in the lineup by switching him from third to first base. First base eligibility will only increase his value.
22. Hunter Dozier
Dozier took a significant step forward from his rookie to sophomore year. He went on to hit 26 home runs and 84 RBI while sporting a .279 batting average and .348 on-base percentage. He is a cheap source of power.
23. J.D. Davis
Before Davis’s breakout campaign, he was an under-utilized player for the Houston Astros. The New York Mets traded for Davis over the 2019 offseason and used him to replace various injured players in the lineup. He proved to be a useful bat last season and has earned an everyday role in 2020. He could be a cheap source of batting average and power.
24. Nick Senzel
Senzel had sky-high expectations heading into his 2019 rookie year. He may not have lived up to those expectations, but Senzel was still a solid source of runs and stolen bases. I expect more of the same this year.
25. Ryan McMahon
McMahon underwhelmed in his first stint as a starter in 2019, but he turned it around in the second half. In the second half, McMahon hit 17 home runs and 47 RBI in just 242 at-bats. McMahon’s cheap power and multi-position eligibility make him a great late-round flier.
26. Miguel Andujar
Coming off an incredible 2018 rookie season, Andujar was marred by injuries in 2019. If he can stay healthy in 2020, Andujar should be able to mirror his rookie season numbers of 27 home runs and 92 RBI. Dynasty owners may want to buy-low on this promising third baseman.
27. Scott Kingery
Like Dozier, Kingery took a big step forward following a disappointing rookie year. He was able to vastly increase his stats across-the-board in his sophomore season. Not only does Kingery qualifies for multiple positions and has 20 home run and 15 stolen base potential. There is serious value to be had here late in your drafts.
28. Matt Carpenter
What happened to Matt Carpenter last season? In 2018, he hit 36 home runs, 81 RBI, and scored 111 runs. He followed that up by hitting 15 home runs, 46 RBI, and just 59 runs while losing his starting job. To say 2019 was a regression year for Carpenter would be an understatement. Carpenter is a low-risk bounce-back candidate heading into 2020.
29. Kyle Seager
Seager has hit 20+ HRs in eight consecutive seasons. If you can stomach the poor batting average, he makes for an almost free source of power in your draft. At his current ADP of 366, he is a solid option in deep leagues at the hot corner.
30. Colin Moran
Over the past two seasons, Moran has averaged 12 HRs and 69 RBI with a .277 BA. At 27 years old, I expect Moran to increase those numbers to about 15 HRs and 80-85 RBI while keeping his BA around .275.
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Main Credit Image: Embed from Getty Images