The Dynasty Guru’s Top 125 Dynasty Outfielders, Nos. 76-125
Congratulations on surviving another off-season. Now that the new year is upon us, it’s time to spend the next month traveling across the positional landscape, labeling players with numbers that correspond to their value. It’s the very definition of freedom. A ton of hard work was put into these rankings, and will continue to be put in as we bring you just an ungodly amount of information over the next month. We hope you enjoy the product we’ve created, and if you’d like to show appreciation for that work you can do so through this link, or via the donate button on in the upper right-hand corner of the homepage. All donations are truly appreciated.
76) Steve Pearce, Baltimore Orioles (Age: 31, Previous Rank: NR)
Pearce is coming off a career season where he hit 21 home runs while batting a robust .293 over 102 games. He is set for a more full-time roll in 2015 where he should see time at first base, left field, and designated hitter. Optimists are looking at a 20-homer, .270 average campaign.
77) Rymer Liriano, San Diego Padres (Age: 23, Previous Rank: 68)
AJ Preller made life much more difficult for the young Liriano when he revamped the outfield, acquiring both Wil Myers and Matt Kemp. Liriano is a talented guy who could go 15/15 but at this point the only way that happens is with another team.
78) Michael Morse, Miami Marlins (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 124)
The Morse signing was an excellent one for Miami since it represents a high upside, low risk move. Morse will play almost exclusively at first base where he has played 151 games during his career hitting .322 with 28 home runs at the position. His average and ISO at first base are far and away his highest at any position.
79) Aaron Judge, New York Yankees (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)
Arguably the Yankees top position prospect, Judge is a deceptively athletic man for his massive 6-foot-7, 235 pound frame. The future corner outfielder carries an impressive .308/.419/.486 slash line over his 131 minor league games. In 2015, he will look to add even more power to his patient approach at the plate.
80) Manuel Margot, Boston Red Sox (Age: 20, Previous Rank: NR)
Margot did a little of everything during the 2014 season as he batted .293, hit 12 home runs, and stole an impressive 42 bases across Low- and High-A. With Jackie Bradley Jr.’s bat in doubt, Margot now dons the mantle of top center field prospect for the Red Sox organization.
81) Michael Taylor, Washington Nationals (Age: 23, Previous Rank: NR)
With Jason Werth doubtful to start 2015 healthy the Nationals will turn to the talented Taylor to fill his shoes. Taylor is a true 20/20 threat but is held back by his high strikeout percentage. He will take a few years to become acclimated enough to hit for a decent average.
82) Austin Meadows, Pittsburgh Pirates (Age: 19, Previous Rank: 74)
Enough already with the outfield prospects, Pittsburgh! Starling Marte, Gregory Polanco, Josh Bell, and now Austin Meadows represent an embarrassment of riches for the outfield-thick Bucs. Meadows is far off but profiles as a high average right fielder with power potential—though he has yet to show much pop or health.
83) Albert Almora, Chicago Cubs (Age: 20, Previous Rank: 54)
Almora’s fall in our rankings is somewhat tragic because he truly is a victim of his own talent. He has such good bat to ball skills that he tries to hit everything, and has a complete lack of regard for the idea of taking a walk. His path will to the majors may not be traditional but betting on talent isn’t a bad strategy. Here’s hoping he will adapt and be a very productive pro.
84) Michael Saunders, Toronto Blue Jays (Age: 28, Previous Rank: 78)
Saunders will look to resurrect his career with the power-heavy Blue Jays in 2015, where he is set to bat seventh and play left field. The last time Saunders had over 550 plate appearances was in 2012, and he came one home run shy of a 20/20 season. He can be had very cheaply.
85) Allen Craig, Boston Red Sox (Age: 30, Previous Rank: 9th at 1B)
Perhaps no one on any of our lists has experienced as precipitous a fall from grace as Craig. Just one year removed from a string of three straight seasons with an average north of .300, there are few better lottery tickets, given his current price.
86) Seth Smith, Seattle Mariners (Age: 32, Previous Rank: NR)
Smith takes his talents north to Seattle, where he will do his best to mash right-handed pitching for a Seattle lineup starved for power. Even though he won’t get many starts vs lefties he should see 450 plate appearances or more.
87) Stephen Piscotty, St. Louis Cardinals (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 104)
Piscotty should hit for a high average and eventually challenge for a 15/10 season. He represents a great insurance policy should Jason Heyward get hurt or decide to leave in free agency.
88) Torii Hunter, Minnesota Twins (Age: 39, Previous Rank: 60)
Much like a spawning salmon returning to his place of birth before he passes, Hunter is returning to Minnesota where his baseball career got its start. At 39, he is still a great bet to hit for a decent average and play in a lot of games. Hunter may be a boring option but he is still more effective than most.
89) Josh Reddick, Oakland Athletics (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 57)
It’s unlikely that he’ll ever soar as high as he did during his 32 home run campaign in 2012, but if he coud just stay healthy, Reddick will be a good bet to approach 20 bombs in 2015. The average won’t be very good but he’s a cheap source of power who should bat third and see plenty of RBI chances.
90) Domonic Brown, Philadelphia Phillies (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 35)
Unfortunately for Brown and his fantasy owners it seems like last season is a better indication of his true talent level than his 27-home run 2013 season was. While he isn’t likely to repeat the ridiculous 19.3 percent HR/FB rate that propelled him to those numbers, he will certainly should be better than the 7.9 percent mark from last year.
91) Shane Victorino, Boston Red Sox (Age: 34, Previous Rank: 42)
If you believe he’s going to stay healthy then please, stop reading right now because I have some bitcoin to sell you. What, not interested? Fine. Victorino played just 30 games last season due to back issues and a recurring hamstring problem and dropped 50 spots in our rankings from just a year ago.
The veteran stopped switch-hitting in 2013 and hasn’t been on the field enough (.268/.303/.382 in 133 plate appearances in 2014) for us to determine just how good he really is anymore. With all of his problems staying healthy, there’s no guarantee he’s going to be on the field enough to have any fantasy value, plus he has to compete with promising youngsters Rusney Castillo and Mookie Betts for at-bats. At age 34, after a season in which he dealt with hamstring issues, the stolen bases probably aren’t coming back. Let someone else pay for an unlikely return to fantasy relevance.
92) Michael Bourn, Cleveland Indians (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 55)
“We’ve talked to Bournie a lot,” said Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona on Jan. 26. “He’s one of the most conscientious and nicest kids you’ll ever meet. But quite frankly, whether it’s because of injuries or not, he hasn’t been the kind of guy who wreaks the havoc that we kind of envisioned when we signed him when it comes to stolen bases.”
We couldn’t have said it any better Tito. The Indians clearly want Bourn to run more (he stole just 10 bases on 16 attempts last season), but after three separate stints on the disabled list with a hamstring injury last year, at age 32, projecting anything more than 20 steals seems like a reach. Speed doesn’t age well, especially when your legs start breaking down, which is what we are seeing with Bourn.
93) Drew Stubbs, Colorado Rockies (Age: 30, Previous Rank: 122)
He’s a platoon player at this stage of his career, but is one of the better ones in the game today. Stubbs won’t get more than 500 plate appearances, which limits his upside, but he has managed to pop at least 10 home runs and swipe at least 17 bases in each of the past three seasons with three different organizations. You can bank on a few more home runs (15 in 2014) and an inflated batting average (career-high .289 last season with a preposterously-high .404 BABIP) thanks to the #CoorsEffect.
Seriously, Stubbs posted a .999 OPS at Coors Field last year! If you use him correctly, against left-handed pitching at Coors, he’s a nice matchup plug-and-play for fantasy purposes to have on your bench.
94) Jake Marisnick, Houston Astros (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 75)
Can he hit? We still don’t know for sure, but the fact that the Marlins gave up on him so quickly, and that Houston appears poised to give playing time to Colby Rasmus over him, casts some doubts about his abilities at the dish. Marisnick hit just .249/.281/.326 with three homers and 11 steals in 237 plate appearances last season. The speed is nice, but he provides almost nothing else that is appealing for fantasy owners. He’s only 24 years old, so there is still some time for him to improve, but you’re speculating on a player with some serious flaws (extremely low walk rate, consistent strikeout/contact problems and limited power upside) at this point.
95) Colby Rasmus, Houston Astros (Age: 28, Previous Rank: 51)
After getting benched by the Blue Jays to close out last season, Rasmus was only able to land a one-year deal with the Houston Astros this offseason, where he will likely start in centerfield. His offensive profile has devolved into a free-swinging, three true outcomes hitter, as his contact rates have declined in three straight years (75, 74, 68, 63) while the strikeouts have gone through the roof during that span, topping out at 33 percent with Toronto last season. Rasmus is more than capable of hitting 20-plus home runs in Houston this season, but those home runs come with a terrible batting average and he simply doesn’t run anymore. Rasmus is not a long-term building block and you can certainly do better in a dynasty league.
96) Brandon Nimmo, New York Mets (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)
The Mets first-round selection in the 2011 MLB Draft, Nimmo hit .278 with 10 home runs and 14 stolen bases across three levels last season. Nimmo has the upside to hit double-digit home runs annually, but the big-time power has not really materialized through four minor league seasons. The Mets are desperate for an impact outfielder and there’s no reason to hold back on Nimmo, who may get the call at some point late in the year if he hits at Triple-A.
97) Dustin Ackley, Seattle Mariners (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)
When Ackley was initially called up, we all heard the same thing from scouts and prospect evaluators that ”he’s a guy who is always going to hit.” Since batting .273 in his rookie season back in 2011, he hasn’t hit above .255 in the Majors since. After a brutal first half in 2014 (.214 with four home runs in 243 at-bats), he tore the cover off the ball in the second half (.274 with 10 home runs in 259 at-bats) and showed some signs of life despite the fact that his walk rate plunged to a career-low 5.9 percent.
So which Ackley is going to show up in 2015? He’s been so streaky that your guess is as good as mine, but there is still some potential in his bat. At only 27 years old, Ackley is just entering his prime and could be a nice buy-low opportunity for dynasty owners when you consider that his stock can’t really get much lower.
98) Anthony Gose, Detroit Tigers (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 100)
What were the odds that Gose would actually gain a spot in the rankings after posting an unsightly .226/.311/.293 line with two home runs and 15 steals over 274 plate appearances with Toronto last season? Blame Craig Goldstein and the voters at Sandwich Prospectus for this atrocity.
Gose was dealt to the Detroit Tigers this offseason and should be in line for a significant increase in playing time. If you’re looking for signs of a stolen base breakout, Gose did improve his walk rate to a career-high 9.1 percent last season. If he gets on base, you know he’s going to be running. If you like to speculate on under the radar stolen base breakouts, like Dee Gordon a year ago, Gose is your guy.
99) Kevin Kiermaier, Tampa Bay Rays (Age: 24, Previous Rank: NR)
A defensive wizard, who produced his fair share of web-gems as a rookie last season, Kiermaier will likely spend much of the 2015 campaign platooning between center and right field in Tampa Bay. The power numbers he put up as a rookie (10 home runs) surpassed anything he had done in the minors, so don’t bank on double-digit home runs again, but he has some legitimate stolen base upside and his spectacular defense will help him become a mainstay in the rebuilding Rays lineup. Kiermaier is a nice speculative pickup that could pay off big-time in deeper dynasty leagues if it all comes together in the future.
100) Bradley Zimmer, Cleveland Indians (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)
Cleveland’s first-round pick last June, Zimmer could move quickly through the minor leagues as one of the most advanced college bats from the previous draft. He’s still light years away from the Majors for dynasty owners, but has an outstanding left-handed swing. At this point, there is no reason to think he can’t be a five-category producer in the future. The time to invest is now before he takes off after a full-season in the minors.
101) Nori Aoki, San Francisco Giants (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 45)
If you can’t beat em, join em. Aoki has seen his stolen base numbers decline in each of the past two seasons and his power is nearly non-existent at this point (just one home run last season) and the homers should all but evaporate in the cavernous ballparks of the N.L. West. Aoki is a slap-hitter with a reverse platoon split, who should lead off for a solid offense in San Francisco. He has fantasy value, but it’s becoming more of just an empty batting average and a handful of steals, than anything else as he ages.
102) Andre Ethier, Los Angeles Dodgers (Age: 33, Previous Rank: 59)
If you close your eyes hard enough you can just picture Ethier driving down a California highway (Yasiel Puig riding shotgun) singing the chorus to Toby Keith’s “As Good As I Once Was “…I ain’t as good as I once was…I got a few years on me now…but there was a time, back in my prime when I could really hold my own… I ain’t as good as I once was, but I’m as good once (against right-handed pitching) as I ever was…”
103) Rajai Davis, Detroit Tigers (Age: 34, Previous Rank: 102)
Cheap speed alert! Davis isn’t exciting anymore, but he’s stolen over 30 bases in six consecutive seasons. He may be 34 years old, but he’s shown no signs of slowing down and the counting stats (runs and RBI) have been solid since arriving in Detroit and he is slated to bat at the top of a loaded Tigers lineup. These are the type of value picks that help fill out a dynasty roster and help you win your league.
104) Nick Markakis, Atlanta Braves (Age: 31, Previous Rank: 58)
Proud new owner of baseballs annual “Questionable Free Agent Contract Award”, Markakis garnered a four-year $44 million deal from the Atlanta Braves as a free agent this offseason. Don’t blame him for signing it, heck, I would’ve too, but you have to wonder what the Braves are thinking after selling off assets like Jason Heyward, Justin Upton and Evan Gattis, sinking money into a 31 year old outfielder coming off neck surgery. Markakis has put up nearly identical numbers every season since 2008, but doesn’t do one thing well enough to have significant fantasy value and the move to a less favorable park in Atlanta doesn’t help him going forward.
105) Roman Quinn, Philadelphia Phillies (Age: 21, Previous Rank: 69)
Appears fully recovered from the torn Achilles he suffered last fall and is still one of the fastest runners in the minor leagues. Quinn projects to be an impact stolen base specialist for dynasty league owners once he finally reaches the Majors. He’s worth stashing as he works his way into the picture for the rebuilding Phillies.
106) Steven Moya, Detroit Tigers (Age: 23, Previous Rank: 69)
Any prospect that flaunts the type of power-potential he possesses needs to be on your fantasy radar, but Moya comes with a few more red flags than some of the big-name power bats in the minors. As my colleague Ben Carsley would say, Moya strikes out so much (161 whiffs in Double-A last season) that he “could provide power for a city by swinging and missing.”
Moya is a large human being who can hit some dingers and that’s useful for fantasy owners, but his plate discipline (just 23 walks last year) needs to improve for him to have a major fantasy impact down the road.
107) Matt Joyce, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (Age: 30, Previous Rank: 81)
Traded to the Angels in exchange for reliever Kevin Jepsen this offseason, Joyce is a useful platoon player both Los Angeles and fantasy owners in leagues that allow daily lineup changes for his ability to mash right-handed pitching. Joyce owns a .261/.356/.463 career slash line against righties in 2,175 plate appearances. You know what to do.
108) Alejandro De Aza, Baltimore Orioles (Age: 30, Previous Rank: 61)
If you are in need of cheap speed on your dynasty roster, De Aza will cost only a spare hay penny on draft day and has the potential to swipe 20 bags in 2015 and beyond. He turns 31 years old in mid-April, but don’t let that deter you from investing a pick in the veteran, who is in line for regular playing time filling the gaping holes in the Orioles outfield left by the departures of Nelson Cruz and Nick Markakis. De Aza has only cracked double-digit home runs once (2013) in his big-league career, so don’t expect anything more than a few thefts, if you make him a part of your outfield rotation.
109) Travis Snider, Baltimore Orioles (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 69)
Seriously, how is Snider only 27 years old? It feels like he has been around forever. Orioles GM Dan Duquette has made a living over the past few years turning players other teams have discarded into quality major league assets and Snider, whom he acquired in late January, appears to be his latest reclamation project.
Snider showed some signs of life in the second-half last season, hitting .292/.360/.517 with nine home runs over his final 178 at-bats, and posted the 9th-best batted distance in the Majors last year according to Baseball Heats Maps. There is some definite potential here and the change of scenery plus guaranteed playing time, provides some optimism that we could see Snider develop into a valuable fantasy contributor. For now, however, lets wait till we see some results on the field over a full season before reaching for him as anything more than a late round pick on draft day in dynasty formats.
110) Gerardo Parra, Milwaukee Brewers (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 64)
Parra has fallen nearly 60 spots from last year’s list, which seems odd given the similarities between his 2013 and 2014 campaigns but indicates we finally recognize he is who he is. Expect Parra to hit around .260 with 10 homers and steals apiece moving forward, and he gets on base enough to make his potential run totals alluring, playing time figures to be a possible issue. He’s a much better MLB asset than a fantasy one.
111) Jon Jay, St. Louis Cardinals (Age: 30, Previous Rank: 112)
It’s quite fitting that Jay didn’t move up or down at all (almost), because he’s among the most boring fantasy assets in the game. Some years he hits .300 with no power. Some years he hits .275 with a little bit of pop. Every year he’s an ok backup outfielder in 14-team leagues, and while he’s utterly devoid of ceiling, he’s useful for his counting stats in deeper formats. He’s the perfect Cardinal.
112) Randal Grichuk, St. Louis Cardinals (Age: 23, Previous Rank: NR)
The man drafted one pick before Mike Trout got his first taste of MLB action in 2014, and while he didn’t do much of note with St. Louis, the 25 homers he hit in Triple-A are sure to grab your attention. Grichuk is a short-side platoon player through and through, but he can do real damage against left-handers. If you play in a league that allows you to set your lineup daily, Grichuk provide you with power and a little speed on the cheap for years.
113) Lewis Brinson, Texas Rangers (Age: 20, Previous Rank: 114)
If you catch Brinson on the right day, it’s hard not to fall in love. He’s got a long, athletic body with plus-plus speed and a build that suggests he could grow into some power, and if he figures out how to hit, he’s going to be a fantasy monster. That’s a big “if,” though, as Brinson is still very raw and has an ugly swing at times. His approach took a step forward in 2014, but he’ll need to walk more and strikeout less if he’s going to make it past Double-A pitching. The sky’s the limit if he does, though.
114) Domingo Santana, Houston Astros (Age: 22, Previous Rank: 106)
If you love Javier Baez’s ability to swing and miss but hate the fact that he’s an infielder, Santana is the player for you! The 22-year-old has big-time power and walks enough to get on base at a decent clip, but making contact remains the key limiting factor here. After hitting .296/.384/.474 in Triple-A last year he’s got little left to prove in the majors, but the Astros actually have decent outfield depth.
115) Carlos Quentin, San Diego Padres (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 90)
On the one hand, the Padres’ offseason acquisitions of Matt Kemp, Justin Upton and Wil Myers would seem to leave Quentin out of a job. On the other hand, it’s possible those trades bump Quentin to first base, where he could have a better chance of staying heal-gah never mind he just got hurt again as this was written.
116) Jarrod Dyson, Kansas City Royals (Age: 30, Previous Rank: NR)
In a vacuum (ba dum dum chh), Dyson should rank higher after stealing 36 bases in just 290 PA last season. He doesn’t figure to see enough playing time to truly be fantasy relevant, though, and that’s because he really doesn’t do anything other than field or run. In 20-team TDGX-esque leagues, pick him up for cheap speed. Otherwise, look elsewhere.
117) Juan Lagares, New York Mets (Age: 26, Previous Rank: NR)
Remember what you thought Jackie Bradley Jr. was going to be from a fantasy perspective? That’s pretty much what Lagares has become, what with his OK average, modest speed and tolerable OBP. He’ll contribute modestly in all five categories but stand out in none, but given how often his defense should keep him bat in the lineup, don’t underestimate just how meaningful those counting stats could be in deep leagues.
118) Michael Conforto, New York Mets (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)
This may seem too low a ranking for Conforto, but contextual factors matter for our purposes, and it’s a bummer he’ll probably end up calling Citi Field home. Conforto has the bat and pop to be an interesting fantasy asset, but his ceiling is more OF3 than anything particularly flashy, and he’s still a few years away.
119) Gabriel Guerrero, Seattle Mariners (Age: 21, Previous Rank: NR)
Guerrero did bad things to Cal League pitchers in 2014, and while the Cal League tends to inflate offensive numbers, it’s hard not to be impressed by .307/.347/.467 either way. He’s still more raw tools than refinement at this point, but his power-speed profile and proximity to the majors (probable ETA of 2016) make him a borderline top-100 fantasy prospect.
120) Angel Pagan, San Francisco Giants (Age: 33, Previous Rank: 95)
The man who was probably named by Ambrose Bierce had another quietly productive season again in 2014, stealing 16 bases and posting a .300/.342/.389 line in 413 PA. He missed a good amount of time with injuries and that’s unlikely to change now that he’s 33, but if you can get him on the cheap, expect the AVG, R, and SB totals to be worth your time.
121) Tyrone Taylor, Milwaukee Brewers (Age: 21, Previous Rank: NR)
Dynasty league owners have been tempted by Taylor’s raw tools for years now, and it was really encouraging to see his approach improve in High-A to the tune of a .278/.331/.396 line. The hit tool is still in question, but Taylor can run and show grow into some power, and if he gets to call Miller Park home, his ceiling is as an OF3.
122) David Peralta, Arizona Diamondbacks (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)
One of 2014’s more anonymous pop-up players, Peralta entered last year without any experience above High-A, yet ended up hitting a very respectable .286/.320/.450 in 348 MLB PA. It’s not clear how much playing time he’ll get in 2015, but Peralta’s shown the ability to contribute modestly in all five categories and could be a nicer sleeper pick late in drafts. Let’s hope he’s scrappy enough to stay in Arizona.
123) Scott Van Slyke, Los Angeles Dodgers (Age: 28, Previous Rank: NR)
Van Slyke isn’t a terribly enticing long-term dynasty option given that he’s already 28 and is a short-side platoon guy, but for the next year or so, he has the ability to provide some significant return on investment. The Dodgers’ fourth (fifth?) outfielder hit .297/.386/.425 with 11 homers and four steals last year, and while his .394 BABIP means he’s a poor bet to come close to repeating that average, the power and RBI/R potential is real for those in very deep leagues.
124) Derek Hill, Detroit Tigers (Age: 19, Previous Rank: NR)
Hill is a better prospect IRL than for our purposes thanks to his potentially dazzling defense, but his impressive speed and theoretical ability to make a good amount of contact still make him a notable fantasy asset. This is a classic player who’s going to shoot up regular prospect rankings before he does dynasty prospect rankings, providing savvy owners with the ability to sell him off at his high point once he’s closer to the majors.
125) Michael Choice, Texas Rangers (Age: 25, Previous Rank: 70)
A precipitous fall down the rankings, to be sure. Choice gets the nod thanks to opportunity and track record more than anything he showed in 2014. The young slugger struggled mightily, but the Rangers failed to add talent to the outfield, and in fact lost Alex Rios to free agency. Choice was an utter failure in every respect last year, but progress isn’t linear and his talent should be able to shine in that park.