Fantasy Baseball 2012 Rankings (NL-Only): Top 12 Third Basemen

Eric StashinSenior Writer IMarch 12, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 14: David Wright #5 of the New York Mets reacts after striking out swinging in the bottom of the eighth inning against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field on September 14, 2011 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images

Third base is one of the shallowest positions in fantasy sports.  While the position is going to get an influx in the NL (once Hanley Ramirez gains eligibility), it definitely is rather top heavy. After the first four names come off the board, there is a lot of risk (though also potential reward). 

Let’s take a look at how things currently stand:

  1. David Wright – New York Mets
  2. Ryan Zimmerman – Washington Nationals
  3. Pablo Sandoval – San Francisco Giants
  4. Aramis Ramirez – Milwaukee Brewers
  5. Emilio Bonifacio – Miami Marlins
  6. Ryan Roberts – Arizona Diamondbacks
  7. Martin Prado – Atlanta Braves
  8. Mat Gamel – Milwaukee Brewers
  9. Casey McGehee – Pittsburgh Pirates
  10. David Freese – St. Louis Cardinals
  11. Daniel Murphy – New York Mets
  12. Chase Headley – San Diego Padres


  • I am not the biggest fan of Emilio Bonifacio this season, especially now that he’ll be hitting in the second spot in the order. That said, National League third basemen are extremely weak or risky. Given the other options, I’d still be willing to roll the dice on him.
  • Mat Gamel is a player that everyone should be paying close attention to. It appears that he is going to be asked to fill in for Prince Fielder at first base, but he’ll have eligibility at third base for one more season. We all know he has pop (28 HR in 493 AB at Triple-A in ’11), but he needs to make consistent contact in order to thrive. At Triple-A in ’11 he was at 15.4 percent, a great sign considering his history.  
  • While it’s not a lock, if he can keep it around 20 percent he really could post a great season for those looking to take a gamble.
  • Will David Wright have the type of season that fantasy owners need? Is his back going to cause him long-term issues? There is no questioning that there’s risk, but he has the highest upside among NL 3B.  
  • We have to hope that the changes in the dimensions to CitiField will help him return to the numbers he is capable of.
  • Can Ryan Zimmerman stay healthy? If he could the numbers should be impressive. The last time he had over 600 AB (2009) he hit .292 with 33 HR, 106 RBI and 110 R.  
  • Of course, he’s had over 550 AB just once in the past four seasons, so you have to take that into account. Otherwise, he’d probably be the top option.