2020 Dynasty Baseball RankingsDynasty Baseball

The Dynasty Guru’s 2020 Top 50 Second Basemen, #21-50

WELCOME BACK!!! Despite a scorching hot stove (I can’t believe the player you’re thinking of did or did not sign with the team you thought they would!), January and February can be some of the darkest months of the year (figuratively and literally, moreso for you Astros and Sawks fans out there). But fear not, restless readers. The Dynasty Guru is here to the rescue.

While you were celebrating the holidays and ushering in the New Year, our brave group of writers has been ranking, debating, re-ranking, re-debating, and re-re-ranking over 600 players for dynasty leagues. The fruits of our efforts will be filling January and February with the deepest, most thoroughly and painstakingly selected dynasty baseball rankings on the internet. We have top-40s, top-50s, top-125s, top-200s, and of course top-500s (of course!).

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Without further ado, it’s time to continue our 2020 consensus rankings by looking at the 21-50 second basemen in dynasty leagues.

21) Jurickson Profar, San Diego Padres, (Age: 26, Previous Rank: 17 as SS)

Jurickson Profar joins the Padres after a forgettable stint in Oakland. It’s hard to imagine anyone who played worse than Profar did out of the gate in 2019. He finished May with 198 AB and a .168/.258/.354 slash. Barf. While his numbers did improve somewhat, anyone starting Profar on a daily basis surely regretted it. There is reason for hope if one wants to be optimistic moving forward. The comically low .218 BABIP actually matches his season average, and is low even for a guy with a career .257 BABIP mark. His BB/K and ISO also remained consistent with his 2018 season, and he actually hit groundballs less often. If anything, his IFFB% is responsible for much of the damage. It spiked over 6% to 18.9%. That was highest in the league among qualified hitters. He’ll need to do better avoiding those easy outs. I’m not too optimistic that Profar will ever provide the value he did in 2018, but he’s a solid stop-gap option for teams looking to fill out their roster.  (Jonathan Merkel)

22) Aaron Bracho, Cleveland Indians, (Age: 18, Previous Rank: N/A)

Bracho signed out of Venezuela for more money than fellow rising international sensation George Valera, missed 2018 due to a fractured arm, but shined in his first taste of action. Bracho checked the boxes one should look for in a high-floor prospect: plate discipline and power. His strong BB/K of 1.10 and ISO of .296 over 137 PA in the Arizona League are encouraging signs of maturity from such a young player. Some have already compared Bracho’s offensive ceiling to Jose Ramirez. While the development curve is long for Bracho, and defense may always be an issue for him, he plays in an organization adept at maximizing their player’s potential. Even at 18, Bracho is a highly valuable dynasty stash with a ceiling one can dream on. (Jonathan Merkel)

23) Tommy La Stella, Los Angeles Angels, (Age: 30, Previous Rank: N/A)

Tommy La Stella was a total surprise in 2019. The long time utility man found himself in an everyday role after the Angels’ “Zack Cozart Experience” came to an unfortunate end. La Stella certainly made the most of it. By July he was at 283 AB. He already had 16 HR, 49 Runs, and 44 RBI and batted almost .300. Not bad for a dude who had 10 HR in his previous 947 plate appearances. But a foul tip turned into a broken tibia, and La Stella was only able to play in two more games the rest of the year; his dream season was over. Moving forward, new Angel Anthony Rendon has secured the hot corner and La Stella looks to be headed back for the bench. Will he have another chance to play everyday? I’m skeptical, and I’m doubtful the 30-year-old ever nears the heights he experienced briefly in 2019. (Jonathan Merkel)

24) Wilmer Flores, Free Agent, (Age: 28, Previous Rank: N/A)

Wilmer Flores, baseball’s favorite crier, has been a solid contributor in limited action for his whole career. The problem with limited action is it limits opportunities to contribute. This is why Wilmer has always been hard to trust. It’s also why, even though he can get hot, you probably pass over him when looking for help on the wire. The most he has ever played in a season is 137 games, and he’s only gone over 400 Plate Appearances once. He’s never even hit 20 HR or scored 60 runs. And now he’s on the hunt for a new team. Wherever he lands, he’ll probably be pretty good in limited action. And you will probably think about adding him at some point. But you won’t. It’s Wilmer Flores, after all. (Jonathan Merkel)

25) Isan Diaz, Miami Marlins, (Age: 23, Previous Rank: 39)

Isan Diaz debuted for the Marlins last season, and not much went well for him. I’d tell you about his numbers but I’d rather not sicken you. Still, this is a young prospect with pedigree, opportunity, some firsthand experience to build off of, and time to learn. He also hit 31 HR in both Triple-A and the majors last year. That’s not a bad recipe for hope. And while Diaz has always carried a strikeout percentage of nearly 30%, he has always balanced this negative tendency with some patience. This balance will help Diaz keep his offensive game afloat as he continues adjusting to major league pitching. As he develops, he’ll soon be able to take advantage of pitchers’ mistakes with considerable power. Now that Starlin Castro is a Nat, it’s Diaz who should be rocking Miami’s keystone for years to come. In time, he could become a valuable asset up the middle for the new-look Fish. (Jonathan Merkel)

26) Jonathan Schoop, Detroit Tigers, (Age: 28, Previous Rank: 16)

Jonathan Schoop was an All-Star for the Orioles just two seasons ago. Now, three teams later, he is a cast-off manning the keystone in a circle of modern baseball hell: Detroit. An everyday-by-default opportunity should be good for his fantasy volume, but whether he’s able to return much fantasy value remains to be seen. I’m not optimistic. His 2019 Exit Velocity, xBA, and xwOBA are all below league average. That’s not good for an all-or-nothing power hitter. More and more, it looks like Schoop’s All-Star year was a product of good luck. It now appears that if he gets lucky, he might be average for your fantasy team. (Jonathan Merkel) 

27) Cesar Hernandez, Cleveland Indians, (Age: 29, Previous Rank: 18)

Cesar Hernandez joins the Indians after Philly let the second baseman walk. Hernandez has been interesting to me for the marginal ways he has been able to support a fantasy squad in runs and stolen base categories, but overall he’s very replaceable. Like many in this tier, Cesar’s value is tied to volume more than talent. He’ll be an everyday player in Cleveland and he could see some time near the top of the order which is good, but very little that Hernandez does with that opportunity will be meaningful to your fantasy squad. He won’t hurt you much, but getting a 12/12 ceiling doesn’t look too promising. You can do better. (Jonathan Merkel)

28) Shed Long Jr., Seattle Mariners, (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 40)

Shed Long is a player who will enter spring fighting for playing time. Personally, I’m hopeful he’ll emerge as the winner of Seattle’s second base job. His lite-power/lite-speed combo has always intrigued me enough to keep him on the radar in dynasty leagues. Never a player who will be the best at anything, Long looks like a solid piece who can contribute both homers and steals in a pinch without detracting much anywhere else. Steamer600 gives Long a 68 R, 18 HR, 63 RBI with 11 SB and a .247 AVG. This feels underwhelming to me, but Long was never going to blow anyone away. He’s a good stop gap, emergency option with shreds of upside for your dynasty. And in a full season on a bad team, who knows? (Jonathan Merkel)

29) Robinson Cano, New York Mets, (Age: 37, Previous Rank: 13)

Robinson Cano drops to our 29th rank after over a decade of being one of the league’s elite second baseman. At 37, he has built a long legacy of success, but there can’t be much left in the tank. He limped to his worst season finish since a curious 2008 in 2019. His K% and SwStr% both went up, while his BB% went down. These are classic traits of aging hitters. After a time, it becomes very hard to keep up with the extreme velocity of MLB pitching and old bats are left flailing at pitches they used to crush. Cano is under contract until 2023, but his dynasty value has faded and his final hurrah has probably already happened. Cano, it’s been nice to know you. (Jonathan Merkel)

30) Scooter Gennett, Free Agent, (Age: 29, Previous Rank: 6)

Some say the Reds are still looking for the real Scooter Gennett. I’ve heard reports that they’re convinced he was abducted by a cabal of gangsters who sold his body to a dying billionaire in need of a host to which he could transfer his brain in a ‘Get Out’ style procedure. It may be the only logical explanation as to what happened. Our team went round and round on where to rank Gennett. Just last year he was our 6th best second baseman. Then the season happened. Now, a free agent after being traded out of Cincy and cast off by the San Francisco Giants, Gennett is in limbo. And nothing he ‘accomplished’ in ‘19 will make teams rush to sign him. That’s what happens when a player strikes out a lot more, walks a lot less, hits with much less power, and produces a negative WAR. Some say he’s capable of providing more sneaky value once he finds a job; others say he was lucky for two straight years in Cincy. What he does moving forward is anyone’s guess. (Jonathan Merkel)

31) Luis Rengifo, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)

Turning 23 in February, Rengifo is a bench bat for the 2020 Angels, assuming the health of Tommy La Stella and David Fletcher playing in front of him. A top-10 organizational prospect going into 2019, mostly for his defense, his offense over 406 plate appearances at the big league level was disappointing to say the least. Rengifo hit seven home runs, stole two bases, and had a .238 average all with a .300 BABIP in 2019, which is no bueno. The speed he showed in the minors (19 plus steals in each minor league season culminating with 41 across three levels in 2018) has not yet shown up in the bigs. Still young enough to be a starter in 2021 and beyond, for 2020 he’s a bench bat with speed and no power. (Phil Barrington)

32) Dee Gordon, Seattle Mariners, (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 9)

Looks like everyone is out on Mr. Gordon in 2020 as his ranking free fall continues. First the bad: Gordon had a subpar first half with an even worse second half in 2019 and will continue to lose at-bats hitting at the bottom of the order. Next, the unfortunate: A hand injury in May that he said he came back from too early led to those struggles in the first half followed by a June quad injury didn’t let up and he went on the IL in late July. Even with all those injuries Gordon still accumulated 421 plate appearances, hitting .275 with 22 steals. Quad injuries will sap speed so this ranking seems like a good value. Lastly the good: Gordon’s 2020 floor should be hitting about .270 with 30 steals as long as he’s fully healthy and right now there is no reason to believe he’s not. (Phil Barrington)

33) Franklin Barreto, Oakland Athletics, (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 28)

I guarantee that I like Barreto more than you, so be prepared. Oakland felt good enough to trade their 2019 second baseman, Jurickson Profar, so the job is Barreto’s to lose in 2020. Barreto had a solid season at Triple-A in 2019 with 19 home runs, 15 steals, and a .295 batting average. His major league stats leave a lot to be desired, though to be fair he’s never had more than 75 plate appearances in any of the last three seasons he’s joined the big league club, so I’m not going to judge his putrid stats too harshly. The only other infielders that could play at second base are Jorge Mateo and Chad Pinder, so the leash for Barreto could be longer than in prior seasons. A possible 20/20 guy and as such age, opportunity, and upside all factor into making Barreto a perfect sleeper for 2020. (Phil Barrington)

34) Starlin Castro, Washington Nationals, (Age: 29, Previous Rank: 17)

Here’s what I said before he signed with Washington: Team-less as of this writing and unfortunately a player who needs an opportunity to produce (don’t they all) his value is strictly tied to that. As luck would have it, Washington and its openings at second and third base came calling. Castro should get his 600 plate appearances, and do what he does, which is not exciting, but can definitely be usable in fantasy. In 676 plate appearances for the Marlins last season, he hit 22 home runs and stole two bases while walking only 4.1% of the time which is almost as bad as the 12 home runs and six steals he produced in 2018. Batting average is his most useful feature for fantasy however, coming off a .270 season, which followed a .278 season, which followed a .300 season. That doesn’t inspire confidence in a rebound at age 29. His strikeout rate is the only positive as that decreased over the past three seasons, but his 2019 rate of 16.4% still isn’t great. Use him for position flexibility, counting stats and to offset a low batting average guy. (Phil Barrington)

35) Mauricio Dubon, San Francisco Giants, (Age: 25, Previous Rank: NR)

This former 26th-round draft choice worked his way to being a top ten prospect with the Brewers before being traded to the Giants last season at the trade deadline. Dubon should challenge Zach Cozart to be the starting second baseman in San Francisco this season. While only getting 111 plate appearances in 2019, Dubon held his own with a .274 average with four home runs and three steals. Power isn’t his game (don’t be fooled by the 20 home runs he hit in the Pacific Coast League in 2019) but he does have three seasons of 30-plus steals in the minors. His strikeout percentage has been around 14% and he walks about 5% of the time historically. Expect a .260ish average, a few home runs and the possibility for 20-plus steals and if he can hit toward the top of the order (not unfathomable on the 2020 Giants) Dubon can add a lot of runs too. (Phil Barrington)

36) Jose Peraza, Boston Red Sox, (Age: 25, Previous Rank: 18 as a SS)

Pereza was supposed to be the Reds shortstop of the future, but that never worked out and the Reds parted ways with him after six home runs, seven steals, and a .239 batting average season in 2019. Not what they expected after 14 home runs, 23 steals with a .288 batting average season in 2018. Only 25 years of age, Peraza enters 2020 with a shot to be Boston’s starting second baseman. A great spot for him to rebound and with Boston only paying him $3 million it’s not a big risk on their part. His power is non-existent so don’t expect more than ten home runs though his steals should rebound to somewhere in the upper 20s. Peraza has consistently walked at a 4% clip and struck out around 13% of the time in his career so expect those numbers to remain steady. Watch out for the hype train with Peraza but a late-round investment is worth a shot in 2020. (Phil Barrington)

37) Michael Busch, Los Angeles Dodgers, (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)

A first-round pick (31st overall) in 2019 from the University of North Carolina, the left hand hitting Busch showed an excellent eye at the college level, walking more than he struck out in his college career as well as solid power; draft day reports had him as one of the best hitters in the class. A hand injury prevented him from playing much after he was drafted with only 17 games, mostly in the Arizona Fall League. His height of six-feet and weight of 207 pounds make him seem more suited to second base though many pundits had him slotted as a 1B/OF going into the draft since he played both at UNC. With Gavin Lux looking to solidify second base for the Dodgers for the next decade, Busch will either need to slide to an outfield position or be traded to get playing time. Supersub may be his future. Either way, we shouldn’t expect to see him at the major league level for a couple seasons. (Phil Barrington)

38) Brian Dozier, No Team, (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 17)

From a 2017 ranking of 3rd to last year’s 17th to 38th this year, this is what’s called “trending downward.” Still unsigned as of this writing, it is hard to expect more than he provided last season, where Dozier hit 20 home runs with three steals and a .238 average in 482 plate appearances. His average is a hindrance at this stage in his career and he’s no longer stealing bases. The best-case scenario is he gets a starting job and hits 20ish home runs and steals ten-plus bases. More than likely however he’ll get an invitation to Spring Training and will be a bench bat (and possibly traded at the deadline to a contender). (Phil Barrington)

39) Esteury Ruiz, San Diego Padres, (Age: 20, Previous Rank: 26)

Ruiz was acquired by the Padres in a July 2017 trade from the Royals, who signed him out of the Dominican Republic back in 2015. Ruiz’s star was on the rise after two solid seasons at Rookie ball and an MVP in the 2017 Arizona Fall League. In 2018 he showed off the speed, stealing 49 bases at Class-A Fort Wayne. Though Ruiz struck out a lot (141 Ks in 493 plate appearances) he also hit 12 home runs and 20 doubles. He’s mostly played second base in the minors though has also played third base and outfield (his defense isn’t considered above average at any). A 20/20 guy at the big league level is his ceiling right now; whether he gets there will depend a lot on how he fills out his current six-foot, 169-pound frame. (Phil Barrington)

40) Hanser Alberto, Baltimore Orioles, (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)

Opportunity is the name of Alberto’s game going into 2020. He should play either second base or third base for the 2020 Baltimore Orioles, the same as he did in 2019. Right now Alberto is penciled in as the leadoff hitter, which isn’t a bad spot for him as he hit .305 in 2019, good for 8th in the American League. Nothing in his major or minor league history suggests he’s that good of a hitter; more like a .280 one. Though Alberto only had 192 Major League plate appearances in the seasons before the 550 he earned in 2019. Power is also non-existent, as the 12 home runs he hit last year were the most he had hit in any professional season. Alberto had some double-digit steal seasons in his minor league career but hasn’t stolen much lately (only four in 2019). If he bats atop the Orioles lineup all season the chance for Runs and a high average is why you want him on your fantasy team. (Phil Barrington)

41) Adam Frazier, Pittsburgh Pirates (Age: 28, Previous Rank: 49)

In 2019, Frazier hit .278/.336/.417 along with 10 home runs and 80 runs. That makes two consecutive years of double-digit home run power and three years of consistent contact ability. Hitting leadoff in 2019 helped increase his value, but in 2020, he will likely fall to the bottom third of the Pirates order with the emergence of Kevin Newman. On the bright side, you can know what to anticipate out of Fraizer’s production. While he won’t win your dynasty team a championship, finding a player who can potentially hit .300 and score 75 runs this low in the rankings is nothing to overlook as a flier. (Steven D. Jaeger)

42) Nicky Lopez, Kansas City Royals (Age: 25, Previous Rank: NR)

2019 was a mixed bag for Nicky Lopez. He started the season hitting nearly every minor league pitcher during the first month, then saw his offense evaporate upon his callup to Kansas City. With a full season of the Major Leagues under his belt, Lopez offers some upside with his above-average contact rate and speed ability. He doesn’t strike out a lot, quietly hit .301 to end 2019 and offers the possibility of double-digit steals. If he can hit second for the Royals in 2020, there is some optimism for three category production in batting average, runs, and stolen bases. Just don’t let the optimism run wild. (Steven D. Jaeger)

43) Jahmai Jones, Los Angeles Angels (Age: 22, Previous Rank: 30)

In 2019, Jahmai Jones continued to underwhelm in a repeat visit to Double-A. He was only able to muster a .234/.308/.324 batting line with five home runs and nine stolen bases in 544 plate appearances. He did show a little bit of reason for hope in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit .302/.377/.509 and stole seven bases in 61 plate appearances. But he continues to strikeout twice as much as he walks and fails to show any improvement (and in fact seems to be regressing) in his skills from year to year, making it more and more difficult to continue to believe he may ever develop into a dynasty relevant player. (Steven D. Jaeger)

44) Miguel Hiraldo, Toronto Blue Jays (Age: 19, Previous Rank: NR)

Miguel Hiraldo is a name to watch. At only 19, he has made a mark in the minor leagues. Over his first 539 plate appearances during his first two minor league seasons, he has put together a stellar .300/.354/.460 batting line, with nine home runs, 87 runs, 73 RBIs and 29 stolen bases.

He has shown above average contact skills, raw power and plus speed. A potential drawback is that he pulls the ball too frequently, but given his age and talent ability, he has plenty of time to correct this during his remaining development.

A natural shortstop, there is some question as to where Hiraldo will end up playing defensively (2B, SS, or 3B). Regardless, in a few years, when he is on the field, dynasty league owners will want to watch Hiraldo to see how his skills translate. Expect to see him climb these rankings. (Steven D. Jaeger)

45) Jason Kipnis, Free Agent (Age: 33, Previous Rank: 48)

The plunge continues. Jason Kipnis still offered some power, posting 17 home runs in 2019, and his contact rate remained solid. However, he’s been more of a liability than an asset, since he’s playing in an era where everyone seems to have power, and his contact has been of poor quality for the past three seasons. His batting average will be below .250 and he will strikeout twice as often as he walks, struggling to post an on base percentage above .300. Kipnis’ skills have been on a steady decline, and for a 33-year-old without a team at the time of this writing, dynasty owners will want to avoid him. (Steven D. Jaeger)

46) Eric Sogard, Milwaukee Brewers (Age: 33, Previous Rank: NR)

Eric Sogard had a solid season in 2019, posting 13 home runs and eight stolen bases while hitting .290/.353/.457 over 110 games for the Blue Jays and Rays. But 2020 projects to be a different story. Sogard was signed to a one-year contact by the Brewers in the offseason, returning to Milwaukee where he previously played for two seasons. That means he is blocked for playing time by the far superior Keston Hiura at second base, regulating him to a utility role. While Sogard will likely find sufficient at-bats to be helpful to your fantasy team as a potential low-end backup with multi-position eligibility, just don’t overlook his 2018 batting line of .134/.241/.165. Proceed at your own risk. (Steven D. Jaeger)

47) Esteban Quiroz, San Diego Padres (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)

Esteban Quiroz looked poised to be the 2020 opening day starting second baseman for the San Diego Padres following their trade of Luis Urias. In 2019, he posted a .271/.384/.539 batting line in the PCL, adding 19 home runs and a .923 OPS. Unfortunately, during the offseason, the Padres signed Jurickson Profar to man second base. Despite his obvious contact and power abilities, and his plethora of experience playing both professional ball in Mexico and in the minor leagues, it is hard to put much stock in a 27-year-old player who has yet to make his major league debut and has no real path to do so this year. (Steven D. Jaeger)

48) Ji-Hwan Bae, Pittsburg Pirates (Age: 20, Previous Rank: NR)

Ji-Hwan Bae is better known for off-field events that have thus far posed a challenge to his major league development. First, he had his contract voided by Major League Baseball after it concluded that the Atlanta Braves violated international signing rules from 2015 through 2017. Then, last year, Bae was suspended for 30 games after being found guilty of assaulting a former girlfriend. When he is playing, he possesses well-above average speed and average contact ability, but little power potential. Given his ability to post 30 stolen bases in a season, he is not someone dynasty leaguers should completely ignore, but until he is able to post multiple full seasons of production, dynasty leaguers shouldn’t get too excited. Monitor for now.  (Steven D. Jaeger)

49) Brock Holt, Boston Red Sox (Age: 31, Previous Rank: NR)

Brock Holt is nothing more than a low-end part-time player who has little to offer dynasty fantasy owners. In 2019, he posted 295 plate appearances. He did manage to hit .297, but he did little else during that time. For instance, he was only able to muster three home runs, 31 RBIs, 38 runs and one stolen base. In one of baseball’s best offensive lineups, these numbers are virtually impossible to understand. While Holt might make a useful real-life backup for the Boston Red Sox, for dynasty league owners looking for help at second base or up the middle, you need to keep looking.  (Steven D. Jaeger)

50) Maikol Escotto, New York Yankees (Age:17, Previous Rank: NR)

Maikol Escotto has already drawn comparisons to Jose Reyes. Signed by the New York Yankees as an international free agent in 2018, Escotto has quick hands and gap power. This past season, he posted a strong .315/.429./.552 line with 11 doubles, four triples and eight home runs in 181 at-bats. He also added 13 stolen bases. His exit velocity has been averaged at 95 miles per hour, which is more than encouraging for a 17-year-old.. It is too early to roster Escotto on your dynasty league team, but you will certainly want to remember his name and be ready to add him once he arrives. (Steven D. Jaeger)

The Author

Jonathan Merkel

Jonathan Merkel

Staff Writer at The Dynasty Guru, Resident Hack at merkwords.wordpress.com, author 'Our Carnage is Showing.' Also on YouTube. Strikeouts are everything.

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