Matthew Pouliot

Strike Zone

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Outfielder Keeper Rankings

Thursday, August 18, 2011

This year's final set of Strike Zone player rankings focuses strictly on 2012 and beyond. I'm looking mostly at the next two years in these keeper rankings, though I am providing a little credit for 2014 and '15. As always, there are position rankings with notes and an overall top 250 list.

Click to see other Keeper rankings:
Top 250 | SP | RP | OF | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | C | DH

  • I had a difficult time ranking all of the quality young outfielders between No. 10 and No. 30. Heyward was perhaps the toughest call. I had him ranked 14th among outfielders going into this year, and I certainly thought he'd be in the top 10 by 2012. However, he's been struggling to play through injuries for nearly a season and a half now, and while I think he still has a chance to become even a top-five outfielder next year, I'm showing a little caution with his ranking.

  • The game's two best prospects, Bryce Harper and Mike Trout, come in at Nos. 52 and 35, respectively. Remember, I'm primarily focusing on 2012-13 here. For a permanent keeper league, both should be treated as top-30 outfielders right now. I have Trout quite a bit higher because he's a basestealer and he figures to be the first to establish himself as a regular. Perhaps there's a chance Harper will break camp with the Nationals next spring, but I think it's a long shot.

  • Beyond Rasmus at No. 23, the Blue Jays have Rajai Davis (No. 51), Travis Snider (No. 77), Eric Thames (No. 85) and Anthony Gose (No. 114) on the list. Of course, they're going to have Jose Bautista play alongside Rasmus next year, so there's only going to be one spot open for the others. Thames looks like the favorite to get it now. I still think Snider is the better player of those two, but his latest failure in Toronto makes him a trade candidate. Davis is also likely to depart this winter. Gose, who was the center fielder of the future before the Rasmus trade, now has his path blocked to the majors. I'm not very high on his bat anyway, but with his 50-steal potential, he couldn't be left off the list. It's possible the Jays could eventually shift Rasmus to left to make room for him. There are actually several directions they could go: they could put Adeiny Hechavarria at shortstop, Yunel Escobar at third base and Brett Lawrie in the outfield in 2013.

  • RankPlayer NameTeam
    1 Ryan Braun Brewers
    2 Matt Kemp Dodgers
    3 Jacoby Ellsbury Red Sox
    4 Justin Upton Diamondbacks
    5 Carlos Gonzalez Rockies
    6 Andrew McCutchen Pirates
    7 Carl Crawford Red Sox
    8 Matt Holliday Cardinals
    9 Curtis Granderson Yankees
    10 Mike Stanton Marlins
    11 Josh Hamilton Rangers
    12 Jason Heyward Braves
    13 Michael Bourn Braves
    14 Hunter Pence Phillies
    15 Drew Stubbs Reds
    16 Adam Jones Orioles
    17 Nelson Cruz Rangers
    18 Desmond Jennings Rays
    19 Shin-Soo Choo Indians
    20 Jay Bruce Reds
    21 B.J. Upton Rays
    22 Chris Young Diamondbacks
    23 Colby Rasmus Blue Jays
    24 Brett Gardner Yankees
    25 Andre Ethier Dodgers
    26 Shane Victorino Phillies
    27 Alex Gordon Royals
    28 Nick Markakis Orioles
    29 Jayson Werth Nationals
    30 Corey Hart Brewers
    31 Cameron Maybin Padres
    32 Logan Morrison Marlins
    33 Alex Rios White Sox
    34 Carlos Beltran Giants
    35 Mike Trout Angels
    36 Ichiro Suzuki Mariners
    37 Austin Jackson Tigers
    38 Carlos Quentin White Sox
    39 Jose Tabata Pirates
    40 Lance Berkman Cardinals
    41 Nick Swisher Yankees
    42 Denard Span Twins
    43 Coco Crisp Athletics
    44 Domonic Brown Phillies
    45 Peter Bourjos Angels
    46 Vernon Wells Angels
    47 Matt Joyce Rays
    48 Brennan Boesch Tigers
    49 Jason Kubel Twins
    50 Torii Hunter Angels
    51 Rajai Davis Blue Jays
    52 Bryce Harper Nationals
    53 Bobby Abreu Angels
    54 Grady Sizemore Indians
    55 Michael Brantley Indians
    56 Alfonso Soriano Cubs
    57 Angel Pagan Mets
    58 Josh Reddick Red Sox
    59 Delmon Young Tigers
    60 Jeff Francoeur Royals
    61 Josh Willingham Athletics
    62 Juan Pierre White Sox
    63 Marlon Byrd Cubs
    64 Seth Smith Rockies
    65 Jason Bay Mets
    66 Melky Cabrera Royals
    67 Mike Carp Mariners
    68 Dexter Fowler Rockies
    69 Chris Coghlan Marlins
    70 Carlos Lee Astros
    71 Dayan Viciedo White Sox
    72 Chris Heisey Reds
    73 Yonder Alonso Reds
    74 Franklin Gutierrez Mariners
    75 Andres Torres Giants
    76 Andy Dirks Tigers
    77 Travis Snider Blue Jays
    78 Lorenzo Cain Royals
    79 Magglio Ordonez Tigers
    80 Trayvon Robinson Mariners
    81 David DeJesus Athletics
    82 Johnny Damon Rays
    83 Ryan Ludwick Pirates
    84 Jon Jay Cardinals
    85 Eric Thames Blue Jays
    86 Cody Ross Giants
    87 Brett Jackson Cubs
    88 Nate Schierholtz Giants
    89 Gerardo Parra Diamondbacks
    90 Hideki Matsui Athletics
    91 Lucas Duda Mets
    92 Ben Revere Twins
    93 Nyjer Morgan Brewers
    94 Jordan Schafer Astros
    95 Casper Wells Mariners
    96 Rick Ankiel Nationals
    97 Kosuke Fukudome Indians
    98 Jonny Gomes Nationals
    99 Alex Presley Pirates
    100 John Mayberry Jr. Phillies
    101 Will Venable Padres
    102 Tyler Colvin Cubs
    103 Leonys Martin Rangers
    104 Carlos Gomez Brewers
    105 Luke Scott Orioles
    106 Nate McLouth Braves
    107 Jason Bourgeois Astros
    108 Jerry Sands Dodgers
    109 David Murphy Rangers
    110 Raul Ibanez Phillies
    111 Sam Fuld Rays
    112 Ryan Kalish Red Sox
    113 Kyle Blanks Padres
    114 Anthony Gose Blue Jays
    115 Chris Carter Athletics
    116 Garrett Jones Pirates
    117 Charlie Blackmon Rockies
    118 J.D. Drew Red Sox
    119 Roger Bernadina Nationals
    120 Gary Brown Giants
    121 Aaron Cunningham Padres
    122 Conor Jackson Athletics
    123 Allen Craig Cardinals
    124 Wily Mo Pena Mariners
    125 Juan Rivera Dodgers
    126 Ryan Sweeney Athletics
    127 Nolan Reimold Orioles
    128 Tim Wheeler Rockies
    129 Tony Gwynn Jr. Dodgers
    130 Scott Hairston Mets

    Matthew Pouliot is the Executive Editor of and has been doing the site's baseball projections for the last 10 years. Follow him on Twitter @matthewpouliot.
    Email :Matthew Pouliot

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