2024 Dynasty Baseball RankingsDynasty Baseball

THE DYNASTY GURU’S 2024 TOP 125 DYNASTY LEAGUE OUTFIELDERS, #1-#20

WELCOME BACK DYNASTOPIANS!!! Woohoo the top 10! Thanks for being here!

#1-#10

RankPlayerAvg. Rank
1Ronald Acuña Jr.1
2Julio Rodríguez2.6
3Corbin Carroll3.2
4Juan Soto4.3
5Fernando Tatis Jr.4.4
6Yordan Alvarez6.7
7Kyle Tucker6.8
8Aaron Judge7.3
9Mookie Betts9.5
10Luis Robert Jr.10.8

Is there a sexier group of players in Dynasty baseball than the top-10 outfielders? Power, speed, tremendous upside potential, crafty vets, OBP monsters, three Juniors, seriously, everything is covered by this group of ten. There is a clear consensus #1 overall pick, and that is Mister 40/70 himself, Ronald Acuña Jr. Not much you don’t already know about him, but what amazes me is we still may not have hit his ceiling. The easy choice for #1 OF, as it’s been for years now. If you lose out on Acuna, the Mariners own Julio Rodríguez is a nice consolation prize. Rodríguez hit four more homers, stole 12 more bases, and had 46 more Runs + RBI in 2023 compared to his rookie season. Though his slash numbers were slightly lower, the floor for Rodríguez just keeps rising.

Our #3 rated outfielder could easily be #2, and we wouldn’t argue with you if you drafted Corbin Carroll ahead of Julio, especially as this is Dynasty baseball, and coolness doesn’t count. With a rookie-of-the-year stat line of 116/25/76/54; there’s a race between the two for the next 40/40 season. Carroll showed a higher ISO in the minors as well, so more homers are within reach.  A K rate of 19.4% was lower by a few percentage points than his minor league numbers, so we may see a higher K rate, and thus lower average in 2024; though that should be mitigated by a respectable walk rate, (8.8% in 2023, and a career minor league % of 16.4%) His goatee has also earned the respect of the darkest timeline as well.

The newest Yankee, Juan Soto, carries OBP glory with him wherever he goes. If you are drafting an OBP league, taking Soto always makes you feel warm and fuzzy. But we know what separates Soto from the top three are the steals (though he’s averaged 10ish throughout his career, and 12 last season, so helpful). Personally, I’d rather have Fernando Tatis Jr., especially as he will also qualify at SS in many leagues in 2024. Don’t forget that Tatis missed the first month (due to suspension) and still accumulated 635 plate appearances and went 91/25/78/29 with the lowest BABIP while posting the best K rate (22.2%) of his career thus far. Tatis could finish 2024 as the top overall hitter and we shouldn’t be surprised in the least.

As much as I love Yordan Álvarez, this is the highest he will be ranked in Dynasty circles (not too shabby!); a combination of lack of steals and health. I always feel much better about taking Yordan in an annual league than a dynasty/keeper one; his games played from 2021-2023: 144, 135, 114, not trending in the right direction as he ages. Álvarez spent a majority of June and July on the IL with right oblique injury. He is an OBP monster (career .390) with no speed (two career steals), though, if starting off a Dynasty, I would rather have our #7 OF, his Astros teammate, Kyle Tucker.

Tucker is now the model of boring constancy, with nearly 30/30 seasons becoming the floor. He stole a career-high 30 bases last season, and that number has increased in each of his three, full, big-league seasons (14-25-30). He’s also another example in the long line of underwhelming top prospect debuts: in 2018, Tucker garnered exactly 72 plate appearances and hit zero homers and stole exactly one base in his age-21 season. Furthermore, it took Tucker two more seasons to become a legitimate, five-category contributor.

Two vets are up next in the rankings: Aaron Judge and Mookie Betts. For this season (and next) Betts is a cheat-code play at second base, but as an OF #1 he fits like a glove. Betts is coming off the second-best offensive season of his career and at age-31 shows no signs of slowing down. Judge will likely never repeat his historic 2022 but that doesn’t matter much, he is still good for 35+ homers even without playing a full season of games. If you draft either guy in a start-up, you have chosen the “win-now” strategy, and you should draft according, letting those sexy top prospects go for pieces to help win immediately.

When using tier rankings (always a good idea, especially in a start-up), the end of tier one would be Betts, and our #10 ranked outfielder, Luis Robert, would start tier two. The high-level consistency of the previous nine players is missing from this next group, but the possibility exists. Robert just had a season like that, and it may have come under the radar a bit in fact. Only 26 years old, Robert just put up numbers we had all been hoping for when the Sox signed him back in May 2017: 90/38/80/20, career highs in all stats. While his K rate was a bit too high (28.9%) and his OBP a bit too low (.315), those are numbers not in line with him historically, so improvements are possible. In our 2024 TDG start-up Dynasty (draft still ongoing!) Robert came to my team with pick 28; needless to say, I was pretty stoked, though three guys were drafted before him that are lower in our rankings (Jackson Chourio, Wyatt Langford and Michael Harris II), proving that the upside of youth trumps all.

(Phil Barrington)

#11-#20

RankPlayerAvg. Rank
11Michael Harris II12.6
12Randy Arozarena15.2
13Jordan Walker16
14Jackson Chourio16.8
15Wyatt Langford16.2
16Mike Trout15.1
17Adolis García16.9
18Cody Bellinger19.4
19Jazz Chisholm Jr.21.6
20Nolan Jones21.6

We should recognize the amount of talent in this tier.   There is a player who was formerly a 1.1 pick every year, studs currently putting up big numbers, and the next wave of impact fantasy bats.  It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if one or more of these players made a jump into the top tier.

Jordan Walker and Michael Harris II each had a great 2023 season and are primed for big seasons in 2024.  Harris exploded onto the scene in 2022 and came within a few home runs of having a 20/20 season that season and in 2023.  Some signs in his 2023 stats could prove a big year is coming: His max exit velocity increased, his launch angle went up (still low at 7.5 degrees), and he cut his strikeout rate to 19%.  His sprint speed was almost in the 90th percentile.

The plate approach needs work.  It’s hard to survive with a walk rate under 5%, especially when the player chases as much as Harris, but plate discipline improves with age.  Harris has already shown the ability to make improvements and is one strong year away from being a no-doubt elite fantasy asset.  Just like Jordan Walker, who some people are saying was a bust in 2023.  While I wasn’t the biggest Walker fan going into the season, I don’t see how we can call him a bust.  A wRC+ of 116 games at 21 years old is impressive, especially with the excellent approach (8% BB%, 22% K%) and immense raw power (114 mph).  

There are two prospects here that both have a serious chance to win Rookie of the Year.  Jackson Chourio received a record-breaking eight-year, $82 million contract this offseason, guaranteeing he is starting the year in the big leagues.  Chourio has an elite power and speed combo, and his hit tool has improved.  We can nitpick a few things here, but listen to what the team tells us.  The Brewers gave a 19-year-old 82 million dollars, a player they know way better than any of us do.  They believe that Chourio will be a stud for years to come, and we should all buy in if the opportunity presents itself.

Wyatt Langford had one of the loudest pro debuts I can remember, as he put up a 1.157 OPS in 44 games over four levels.  He has a swing primed for power and an elite approach at the plate.  The only real issue you can raise about the fourth overall pick is that he doesn’t have that long of a professional track record.  But if you’re going to use that to doubt his upside seriously, you’re just looking for excuses.  Congratulations to everyone with a 1.1 FYPD pick; Langford has the makings of a stud bat you build a team around. 

Jazz Chisholm and Mike Trout are two players who share an issue – injuries.  Both players have averaged around 350 plate appearances in the past three seasons.  While there aren’t any chronic injuries, each player is racking up the bumps and bruises.  Hamate bones, obliques, back spasms, calves, it’s all adding up, and at a certain point, it makes you wonder if either of these players can physically stay on the field for an entire season.

In situations with no chronic injury, I stay positive and remember the research done by fantasy writer and man who is much more intelligent than I, Jeff Zimmerman.  He writes in The Process (a must-read every year) that 40% of all hitters will spend some time on the IL, and the number of hitters that spend multiple seasons goes down yearly.  In his experiment, only six players spent time on the IL four seasons in a row.  Now, while Trout is on the older side and the chance of injury increases, let’s not forget the talent.  The plate skills have started declining, but Trout’s 114 mph max exit velocity and .389 xwOBA are within the top 10% of the league. Trout is a lock to hit at least 30 home runs if healthy.

Jazz has also been saddled with the injury-prone label, but he still needs to catch up to the track record Trout does. He was on pace to go 30/30 last year, but that came with a 30% strikeout rate. With the number of injuries and the toe surgery that will keep him from running for a few months, I couldn’t fault you for writing him off.  But he’s only 26 years old, and the speed and power are great – 90.4 MPH EV and 28.4 ft/sec sprint.  And while the strikeout rate is in the danger zone, his O-Swing% (percentage of pitches a batter swings at outside of the strike zone) was 28%, just under the MLB average of 30%. He’s one entire season away from being one of the best young hitters in the game.

Nolan Jones and Cody Bellinger enjoyed a breakout and a bounce-back in 2023.  Jones showed us why the Rockies traded for him with a 20/20 season while hitting .297/.389/.542.  The tools were elite – 90.1 exit velocity & 28.4 ft/second sprint.  You can add a star in OBP leagues with his 12% walk rate.  This damage was done in just a little over 100 games, and as you can imagine, the hype train has already fired up for an entire season in 2024, but let’s keep expectations in check.  His 30% strikeout rate is too high for him to hit close to .300 again or to put up a .401 BABIP, and the launch angle is lower than you would expect for someone with his power (9.8 degrees).  Jones has a history of hitting for a high BABIP, and Coors field will help him mask some of these issues, so I wouldn’t expect a ton of regression.  Jones can quickly go 30/20, even with a lower batting average.

Bellinger is in a similar situation to Nolan Jones, as he just had a big 2023, but everyone expects big-time regression in 2024.  After three seasons of hitting just above .200 and career lows in slugging percentage, the former MVP found a new life in Chicago.  Maybe it was the fresh start in a new city or new rules (no shift, bouncier ball, larger bases), but he rode it to a .307/.356/.525 slash linen with 26 home runs and a career-high 20 stole bases.  It was a great year, but the underlying numbers aren’t buying it.  Bellinger was only in the 20th percentile for Barrel% and exit velocity.  His Hard Hit% was in the 10th percentile, and his xwOBA was barely above league average.  

He didn’t come close to hitting 30 home runs because of luck or new rules. Like Isaac Paredes, another slugger without enormous, raw power, Bellinger consistently hit balls in the air to his pull side. He pulled 33%  of his fly balls this year versus 27% in 2022.  Combined with his career-best In Zone Contact% and Whoff%, it has helped Bellinger compensate for his lack of raw power.  Steamer has projected Bellinger to hit 27 home runs in 2024, and that feels right to me. It’s essential to keep track of where the fee agent lands.  Any park that benefits left-handed hitters will be a massive boost for Bellinger.

(Colin Coulahan)

The Author

Phil Barrington

Phil Barrington

Fantasy player since 1999, specializing in OPS leagues. Accountant by day, fantasy writer by night. Spreadsheets are life.

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