A list of the top second basemen to draft for 2015 fantasy baseball.
1. Jose Altuve Houston Astros
Altuve turned in a remarkable season for Houston, earning the second All-Star nod of his young career en route to winning the AL batting title with a .341 average. The 24-year-old led the majors with 67 multi-hit games and 225 hits, which far surpassed Craig Biggio's club record of 210 hits in a single season. Altuve's success at the plate can be attributed to an improved approach, which saw his contact rate (92%) rise by six percent and his strikeout rate (7.1%) dip significantly compared to the year prior. Altuve's .414/.566/1.013 slash line against lefties was particularly impressive, and while he only slightly improved his walk rate (5.1%), he terrorized opponents on the basepaths with an AL-leading 56 steals. His 86 percent success rate on stolen base attempts may prove to be an outlier, however, considering his success rate for his career coming into last season was 73.5 percent. While it might be wise for fantasy owners to anticipate regression from Altuve this season, there's no denying his value as an elite source of steals who will score plenty of runs and get on base at a healthy clip.
2. Robinson Cano Seattle Mariners
Cano's power was the subject of much debate last offseason after he signed a 10-year deal with the Mariners. But he actually showed more power at Safeco Field than on the road with nine homers and a .470 SLG at home in 37 fewer at-bats than on the road (five home runs, .440 SLG). Still, his homers and doubles were the fewest since 2008. As for his average, he simply picked up where he left off in New York, batting .314 for the second year in a row. He also struck out in just 10.2% of his plate appearances, a five-year low. Cano's RBI count dropped by 25 thanks to his offensively inferior new team. Perhaps that changes this year with the addition of Nelson Cruz to the lineup. With Cruz hitting behind him, it shouldn't take much for Cano to surpass 100 runs scored again. If nothing else, pitchers can't simply pitch around Cano as they too often did last season (his 9.2% walk rate was the second highest of his career).
3. Anthony Rendon Washington Nationals
Rendon's first full season in the majors was a resounding success. Not only did he begin to shake off the "injury-prone" label that had dogged him since college by playing in 153 games, he cranked out 21 home runs, swiped 17 bases on 20 attempts and slashed .287/.351/.473 while playing above-average defense at both second and third base and collecting a Silver Slugger Award at the latter position. Now established as one of the more exciting young players in baseball and a franchise cornerstone for the Nationals, the 24-year-old will likely settle in as the club's long-term solution at third base, with Ryan Zimmerman's ongoing shoulder issues forcing a move across the diamond. It's always possible, however, that the Nats could eventually acquire a third baseman and shift him back to the keystone. As ridiculous as it may seem, given Rendon's hit tool, plate discipline and developing power from the right side, Edgar Martinez comparisons aren't entirely out of line. The kid is legit.
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2015 Fantasy Rankings
Who are the top players you should be considering in your fantasy baseball drafts this year? Find out by browsing our overall rankings for 2013.
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