NL Outfield Tiered Rankings: June

NL OF Tiers: May
NL OF Tiers: Preseason

I love Bob’s Burgers. That love stems from a love of H. Jon Benjamin, which stems from a love of Home Movies. However, I do not find Archer all that funny. It is the lesser show, and that’s that.

I’m sorting the tiers by secondary characters in Bob’s. It’d be too easy to rank Bob’s family. Or would it? Should I? No, I won’t. I’ll stick to the game plan.

Aside from the top tier, the rest of the hitters are ranked loosely in their respective tiers. An argument could be made for all of them to move up or down a couple of spots.

Teddy
Carlos Gomez
Giancarlo Stanton
Bryce Harper
Andrew McCutchen

So here he is. Harper, all of 22 years old and on pace for about a billion everythings. Among all the absurd things he has accomplished thus far, his walk rate might actually take the top honor. Despite everything, I’m still skeptical of his ability to play through a full season unscathed. He just plays so hard. The winds shift when he swings. Perhaps he deserves the No.-1 spot; I will gladly let him prove me wrong. Also, McCutchen’s knees may prevent him from being the perennial first-rounder he used to be. I know he busted his slump, but still, is anyone else other than me underwhelmed? R.I.P. Cutch’s stolen bases.

Ron
Justin Upton
Ryan Braun
Billy Hamilton
Joc Pederson
A.J. Pollock
Dexter Fowler
Starling Marte
Charlie Blackmon
Yasiel Puig
Corey Dickerson

Some -tons, some -sons, a -mon. Mostly dual-threat guys. Braun has reestablished himself as a credible offensive threat once more, and I’ve heard hardly a peep about PEDs (until, uh, now, I guess), so that’s nice. Hamilton is always tough to rank; Harper’s walk rate almost constitutes the entirety of Hamilton’s on-base percentage. The steals are nice, but he is truly a one-trick pony. Perhaps the most surprising name on the list is Fowler’s: he’s running again, and the power display appears to be legitimate — at least, my xISO equation thinks so.

Jocelyn
Hunter Pence
Cameron Maybin
Jason Heyward
Gregory Polanco
Matt Holliday
Denard Span
Ender Inciarte
Jay Bruce
Curtis Granderson
Chris Coghlan
Wil Myers
Michael Taylor

You could arguably merge this tier with the one above. We’re talking more dual-threat guys here, albeit at slightly lesser degrees. Is Granderson the new Bruce, or vice versa? Pence is a bit enigmatic coming off his DL stint, but he has typically proven himself a worthy fantasy commodity. His rank next month ought to be a better reflection of his talent.

Otherwise, there are really no glaring oddities in the plate discipline department (a skill set that’s important to me) — that is, except for Taylor and his astronomical 39.7-percent strikeout rate. I’m just such a sucker for his tools. Oh, and another surprising name: Maybin is back, my friends, albeit in a largely different form than you may have once remembered him. Josh Shepardson and I discussed him here and here.

Regular-Sized Rudy
Khris Davis
Marcell Ozuna
Alex Guerrero
Ben Revere
Nori Aoki
David Peralta
Jorge Soler
Matt Kemp
Carlos Gonzalez
Michael Cuddyer
Andre Ethier

I love Guerrero as much as the next guy — he quickly transformed his name from obscure to trendy — but let’s not get carried away with his home run rate. More one-trick ponies here in the form of cheap speed and power. Then there’s Soler, Kemp and CarGo. So, so disappointing. If you’re in a keeper or dynasty league, I think you have to stick with Soler, but I wouldn’t blame you for cutting bait in a redraft league. His bat speed and line drive stroke can sustain a batting average on balls in play (BABIP) in the .350-.360 range, but he’s not hitting many fly balls (and let’s not discuss the strikeouts, yeah?). Kemp and CarGo have perhaps hit the proverbial wall; xISO thinks the former may be getting shafted a bit, but the latter, relative to his formerly glorious self, is a travesty.

Lance the turkey
Yasmany Tomas
Odubel Herrera
Nick Markakis
Randal Grichuk
Christian Yelich
Angel Pagan
Justin Maxwell
Juan Lagares
Ichiro Suzuki
Gregor Blanco
Jon Jay
Scott Van Slyke
Michael Morse

Tomas may deserve more respect. He’s actually utilizing all fields rather than hitting for power, all while swiping a base here and there. However, he hasn’t proven himself particularly valuable yet, so my expectations remain tempered. Pour one out for Yelich’s untapped potential. You’re looking at the scrap heap now. Carl Crawford booked his annual vacation to the 60-day DL Monday, leaving room for your favorite underappreciated Dodgers platoon hitters and suddenly not-bloated contracts.

Notes:

  • FanGraphs does not list Ryan Zimmerman and Josh Harrison as outfielders on its leaderboards, so I have followed suit.
  • Where’s Mark Trumbo?! He’s in Seattle, ya dingus!
  • As always, please remind me how dumb I am or if I missed anyone!

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Currently investigating the relationship between pitcher effectiveness and beard density. Biased toward a nicely rolled baseball pant. Reigning FSWA Baseball Writer of the Year and 5-time award finalist. Featured in Lindy's Sports' Fantasy Baseball magazine (2018, 2019). Now a Tout Wars competitor.

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I really think you need to re-think that Carlos Gomez #1 overall ranking. The projection systems have Harper, Stanton and McCutchen blowing Gomez out the water by RoS wOBA and wRC+, and ZiPS has him at the 13th best wOBA moving forward. Those other three guys – plus arguably Upton and Braun – have more potent bats, and Upton and Braun are running as much, if not more. If your argument against any of the others is health, that’s funny, considering that Gomez is the only one in the group to have actually spent time on the DL in 2015.