2015

First Baseman are First in Fantasy Depth — 2015 Fantasy Rankings

2015 First base rankings

I’ve already taken part in two mock drafts, including the first round of a 2015 Fantasy Baseball Mock Draft on FantasySports.About.com (with the second round posted on this site) and one that MLB.com hosted here.

In both instances, Miguel Cabrera, who lost his third-base eligibility for 2015, was the top first baseman selected (second and third overall).

MLB.com’s Cory Schwartz explained his choice (after Mike Trout and Andrew McCutchen were taken first and second respectively), this way:

“It’s aawwwwfully tempting to take Giancarlo Stanton here but I’ll stick with chalk and take Miguel Cabrera. In a down year by his standards he hit .313-25-109 with 101 runs, and his career averages are around .320-35-120. Losing the 3B eligibility hurts (although he’ll still have it in 10-game leagues), but he’s in a class by himself as far as money-in-the-bank four-category production.” – @Schwartzstops

The other Fantasy writer that took Cabrera (second overall), was RotoWire.com’s Jeff Erickson, who mentioned that he doesn’t think Cabrera’s stats will fall off a cliff just yet, despite his age (32), and that he should be a 30-100-.300 player again this season.

Diamondbacks slugger Paul Goldschmidt was a close second place, getting picked up among the top seven overall draft picks in each draft.

Who’s the Worst at First?

Despite Billy Butler’s trip to the World Series, he just doesn’t have enough power to serve as a top-20 Fantasy first basemen. If he can go back to batting over .300 on the season, like he did three times in the past six years, then “Country Breakfast” would certainly shoot up the rankings inside the top 15.

And two players with big names on high profile teams will likely go higher than their true Fantasy value deserves are Mark Teixeira and Allen Craig.

Big Tex will be 35 next season, and wrist surgery sapped his ability to hit safely – hitting just .216 on the season, which was his first year under .245. If he regains some strength, in both his wrists and upper body, he could be a 25-HR hitter again.

Craig, however, believes a foot injury he suffered in 2013 cause his problems in 2014. After being a .300 hitter for three straight seasons (averaging over 15 home runs per season), he batted just .215 with eight home runs for the Cardinals in 126 games.

2015 First Base Rankings

These catcher rankings are for standard Rotisserie formats for 12-team leagues that reward home runs, RBI, runs scored, stolen bases and batting average.

RkPlayerNotes
1Miguel Cabrera, DETJust 32 yo, plenty of big seasons left in his bat
2Paul Goldschmidt, ARICould post .300-30-110-100-15 in age 27 season
3Jose Abreu, CHWNo longer an unknown, Abreu is a 1st rounder
4Edwin Encarnacion, TORCapable of 40-HR season after ’13 wrist surgery
5Freddie Freeman, ATLSome of those 43 doubles ready to be HRs
6Buster Posey, SFBest Fantasy catcher won’t play 1B for you
7Anthony Rizzo, CHCAs Cubs improve, Rizzo’s RBI will skyrocket
8Carlos Santana, CLENo longer C eligible, Santana remains stud at 1B/3B
9Chris Davis, BALBack to earth in ’14; mid-rd gamble for power return
10Adrian Gonzalez, LADRBI machine in middle of 2nd-best offense in NL
11Victor Martinez, DETFree agent would do well back in Detroit for Fantasy
12Todd Frazier, CINMight never steal 30 bags again, but improved all over
13Mark Trumbo, ARIStruggled through injury-plagued 1st season in NL
14Joey Votto, CINBad quad ended his ’14; Big bargain ability in mid-rounds
15Prince Fielder, TEXNeck surgery killed 1st yr in Texas, reb. candidate
16Albert Pujols, LAATough to expect .270-28-100 again from Pujols
17Joe Mauer, MINTurning 32 in April; Drop in BA/OBP looks as bad as HR
18Eric Hosmer, KCJust turned 25, so power/RBI potential still exists
19Matt Adams, STLOlder than Hosmer (26), but with better power future
20Brandon Moss, OAKHad offseason hip surgery, should be fine for spring
21Lucas Duda, NYMHas ability to hit for average, just not with power
22Jon Singleton, HOUBig free swinger, could see 200Ks if he gets 550 ABs
23Mike Napoli, BOSComing off worst season since ’07, but just 33 yo
24Mark Teixeira, NYYWill he overcome surgically repaired wrist at age 35?
25Billy Butler, KCJust average or below average in hitting categories
26Justin Morneau, COL3 yrs with 17-19 HR, 77-82 RBI, but better BA in ’14
27Allen Craig, STLFoot injury slowed him, but is that all?
28Adam LaRoche, FAAveraged 26 HR/85 RBI over the past 3 seasons
29Kendrys Morales, FASat for 3 months as FA, then hit .218 once he returned
30Brandon Belt, SFTough to see improvement if Giants offense steps back

I’ll be updating these 2015 First Base rankings as the offseason progresses, so make sure you check back after the winter meetings and into spring training. Drop a comment below if you disagree – or agree – with a ranking so our readers can get multiple viewpoints.

David Gonos spent 5 years as a CBSSports.com Senior Fantasy Writer and three more years writing with SI.com. Over the past 17 years, his work has been published on NFL.com, MLB.com, FanDuel, FoxSports.com and USA Today. Since 2001, he has been tracking down the Top 50-plus Free Fantasy Football Draft Tools online. You can contact David Gonos here.

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Jeff

    November 24, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    Lucas Duda — “Has ability to hit for average, just not with power” Ummmm, is this right?

    • Gonos

      November 24, 2014 at 8:17 pm

      Haha, supposed to be other way around. Thanks for catching!

  2. rick taylor

    December 21, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Sir:

    My main league is keeper-league/AL only. That non-routine system raises questions about some of the rankings.

    For example—James Loney is not ranked above; while A.Craig, B.Butler and Jon Singleton each are listed.

    Interesting Hot Stove debates.
    Anxiously awaiting the updates & comments.

    Thank you

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