I know the list of quality third basemen has some depth. However, I have a real concern about the pending scarcity of power at the position.
Many teams have been on the prowl for a quality, hitting/power third baseman and have come up short. By virtue of supply and demand, my advice in a keeper league is to find your guy and hold on tight.
In general, the group is not aging. It's just a group with diminishing long ball pop. The same can be said for the game in general, but the corners are intriguing for their lack of depth.
Again, to paraphrase what I have said in my first two ranking articles, several factors are crucial to me:
- Where does the player hit in the lineup and who's around him to offer opportunity and protection?
- Where will the player be playing his home games?
- What is the quality of the division pitching he will face most often?
- Where is he in his career? Is he in his most productive years or at the beginning or end?
Of course, there are players I want on my team for their grit or style of play. I like rooting for them. There are players I want no part of and will not have on my team.
1. Miguel Cabrera - home runs, RBI, runs, average
2. Adrian Beltre - home runs, RBI, runs, average
3. David Wright - home runs, RBI, runs, average, stolen bases
4. Chase Headley - home runs, RBI, runs, average, stolen bases
5. Aramis Ramirez - home runs, RBI, runs, average
6. Evan Longoria - home runs, RBI, runs,
7. Pablo Sandoval - home runs, RBI, runs, average
8. Ryan Zimmerman - home runs, RBI, runs, average
9. Martin Prado - RBI, runs, average, stolen bases
10. David Freese - home runs, average, runs, RBI
11. Brett Lawrie - runs, RBI, stolen bases,
12. Mike Moustakas - home runs, RBI, runs
13. Pedro Alvarez - home runs, RBI
14. Will Middlebrooks - home runs, RBI, average
15. Lonnie Chisenhall - home runs, RBI
16. Kyle Seager - home runs, RBI
17. Kevin Youkilis - home runs, RBi
18. Manny Machado
19. Trevor Plouffe - home runs
20. Jeff Keppinger - average
21. Michael Young - runs, average
22. Alberto Callaspo
23. Wilson Betemit
24. Chris Nelson
25. Matt Dominguez
26. Jordan Pacheco
27. Maicer Izturis
28. Ryan Roberts
29. Chris Johnson
- Not much need be said about Miguel Cabrera. Imagine what happens with Victor Martinez and Torii Hunter joining the same lineup.
- I'm a huge Adrian Beltre fan. I think he will feel some pressure with a couple of big Rangers bats gone, but he'll still come through. Beware that it may take him a while to get it revved up.
- Aramis Ramirez had an extremely good season for the Brewers, but he didn't get much pub or love. He's a very consistent guy. If he's healthy he puts up the numbers.
- I wish David Wright had more offense around him.
- Yes, I expect some regression from Chase Headley, but I still think he's really becoming what many thought he would be - an outstanding hitter.
- Martin Prado will do everything possible to win. That means put the bat on the ball and drive in runs. I especially like him at Chase Field.
- My guy to watch is Lonnie Chisenhall. I still think he has the left-handed bat that can murder righties. But he'll most likely sit or struggle against lefties. That's the only reason I don't have him ranked higher.
- I have concerns about Kevin Youkilis making it through the season. And I didn't rank A-Rod because of his injury situation.
- Brett Lawrie is one of the toughest guys for me to rank. I still don't know what the guy brings from game to game. But some day he's going to put it all together.
Maybe it's just when I'm watching him, but Kyle Seager always gets big hits. I just like his game and I think he'll get better. He's just on the wrong team.
I'll be watching spring training games in Florida beginning March 8. I'll be tweeting daily from there.
I expect that I will have seen every team in Phoenix before I get to Florida. If not, I'll catch them all when I return. I hope to give you up-to-the-minute feedback.
- Didi Gregorius has a bad arm but is almost ready to play.
- A.J. Griffin looked very good in the start I saw for Oakland.
- I saw Adam Dunn take a pitch to left-center for a home run. When he does that it means he's on his game. Good sign.
- If I were the Yankees I'd ask Arte Moreno how much money he will pay towards the contract of Vernon Wells. The Yankees could use him. Or Alfonso Soriano.
- If he played in a different home park, I believe Yoenis Cespedes could be the American League home run champ. That's how strong and how solid his swing is. And he's made tremendous adjustments against breaking balls.
- I have a hunch Martin Perez makes the Rangers' rotation. He's improved his command and looked pretty solid to me.
- Loved Hyun-Jin Ryu's changeup. It's a very good pitch. His best pitch is a 90 mph fastball. I think he fits better in the bullpen until he gets totally settled here. We'll see.
- Portillo's opened in Phoenix at the corner of Shea and the 101. Unless you're from Chicago, you don't know what that means. If you're from Chicago – OMG.
Follow me on Twitter @BerniePleskoff or I'll be mad at you.
I invite you to read my scouting profiles on MLB.com. You can find me in Voices. Just scroll down.