The Top 15 Outfielders in the American League
This is actually the beginning of my new series where I will run down the top players at the position they play at. Starting with outfielders which is a very tough position to play.
Anyways I will run down the overall best outfielders in the American League. So without further ado, here is my list of the Top 15 Present Day Outfielders.
These are all present day and are based on what kind of player they are today.
#15 B.J. Upton
Though in a current slump with a .163 batting average, B.J. Upton is a very valuable player.
Upton is extremely valuable on the base paths after stealing 44 bases last year which was second in the American League.
Upton was a very significant part of the resurgence of the 2008 Tampa Bay Rays and I look for him to return to normal form soon
#14 Alex Rios
Though Toronto's center fielder is batting .255 at the moment, Alex Rios has proved that he can be a force to be reckoned with at the plate and on the field.
Even after a pretty bad 2008 and a slow 2009 start, Rios did in fact steal 32 bases last year and had 185 hits throughout the season, which he was placed in 8th in the American League.
The 2007 All Star does carry a lot of potential at this young age, but he needs to utilize it to full form first
#13 Jermaine Dye
So far this season, Jermaine Dye has yet to disappoint from an offensive standpoint.
He is batting .291 with 7 home runs and 16 runs batted in. This former World Series MVP and two time All Star has been known as a powerful force with his bat and his glove work is not to shabby.
The veteran of the White Sox is a great guy to have in the middle of your lineup and he is showing no signs of slowing down at the moment.
#12 Bobby Abreu
Though he is yet to hit a home run this season, Bobby Abreu has proved that he can do it all.
Even though he is 35, the former Home Run Derby Winner has a lot to provide for any team he plays for.
The former Silver Slugger and former 2 time All Star has proven to also be very valuable in the field as he has won one gold glove in 2005.
Though his best years are really behind him, Abreu has a lot to offer to any team that has him
#11 Ichrio Suzuki
Currently coming off of the disabled list, Ichiro is still showing that he is unstoppable. He is currently batting .313 with 2 homers, 9 rbis, and has stolen 5 bases.
The rookie of the year and 8 time all star has proven to be the biggest acquisition from Japan to date. He has been on both World Baseball Classic championship teams, but has yet to win a World Series.
I see the 2001 MVP to excel the streak to 9 straight All Star games and have a great season with Seatle this year.
#10 Matt Holliday
Now the primary reason he is not in the top five is because his numbers are pretty pathetic. He is only batting .234 with 4 home runs and 20 runs batted in. Don't get me wrong, those are average but Holliday is much better than that.
The three time Silver Slugger and the 3 time All Star is struggling so far, but I do not think it is long term because of the NL to AL switch. If Holliday is given time, he will be back to his old form soon. He has yet to really enter his prime in my opinion. I believe he is just entering.
I do think being on the A's will be short term because I'm certain he'll be on the Yankees or Red Sox soon enough
#9 Magglio Ordonez
Some may disagree on this decision of his placement, but still Ordonez is a force to be reckoned with on the Tigers.
Though off to a mediocre start, the 3 time All Star and Silver Slugger is a great force at the plate though he's currently batting .232 with only 12 runs batted in.
Ordonez is aging but is still powerful at the plate, yet he is not really a good fielder or a great baserunner.
Still, Magglio is fun to watch, though I do not think extraordinarily high of him. Please no criticism towards his placement.
#8 Torii Hunter
I was really mad with Torii in this slot. but nonetheless Torii Hunter is a phenom in the outfield today.
He currently has 8 home runs, 21 runs batted in, and is batting .311. Wow! Hunter has always been known for his sportsmanship, his fielding, and his bat. He is an 8 time gold glove winner and a 2 time all star.
Hunter still shows a lot of promise now that he is in the prime of his career and I only look for great things for him and the Los Angles Angels of Anaheim. (What was the Anaheim Angels too simple?)
#7 Josh Hamilton
The dream story of 2008 has found himself on the disabled list for the beginning of the season. In the short time he had played so far this year, Hamilton hit .241 with 2 home runs and 10 runs batted in with a total amount of 18 games.
The real Home Run Derby winner and All Star of 2008 had showed us what can happen if you turn your life around. The magical story of Josh Hamilton looks to continue to ride in Texas, but many question if it was a fluke or not.
Hamilton is a very valuable hitter as he has always been known for his power more than his glove though his fielding ability is not bad. Josh Hamilton has all the potential to repeat or even surpass 2008, but now he needs to focus on recuperating.
#6 Carlos Quentin
Some may disagree with him being Number 5, but Carlos arguably would have been the MVP last season if it weren't for his injury.
Quentin is hitting .233 with 8 home runs and 17 runs batted in this season which is not bad. The should have been MVP hit 36 home runs and knocked in 100 runs batted in last year which shows his true power.
Carlos Quentin is certainly a star to watch in the future.
#5 Curtis Granderson
At his young age, the Tigers very valuable outfielder has proved so much in his young career.
Granderson is batting .256 with 9 home runs and 19 runs batted in. He is also very good at stealing bases as he has stolen 4 bases so far this season.
Not only that, but Granderson may be the best defensive outfielder in the game today. Overall, Curtis is an amazing player who has a very bright future in Detroit.
#4 Carl Crawford
When healthy, Carl Crawford may be the best outfielder in the American League. The two time all star and rookie of the year has been the best leadoff man in the AL. In his career, Crawford has stolen 323 bases and has hit .295 in his career.
So far this year, Crawford has hit .331 with 14 runs batted in and 21 stolen bases and is yet to be caught! That is amazing!
Crawford is also known of using his speed in the outfield as he has made some of the most exciting plays in recent memory. He also has shown how great he is at baserunning (like he needs to) by stealing 6 times against Boston earlier this season.
If healthy, Crawford still has a lot of energy and passion left to give the Rays another shots at the World Series.
#3 Grady Sizemore
Though he is slumping with a .200 batting average, Grady Seizmore has never been afraid of showing his power.
As the Rookie of the Year in 2003, Seizmore showed a lot of promise in his career. Since his magical 2003 season he has been a three time AL All Star and a batting champion.
He is still particularly young, but he is in his prime years. I expect a turnaround for Grady this year and I see him leading the Tribe with power.
#2 Nick Markakis
Some may hate me for ranking Markakis so high, but this kid is amazing.
He is batting .342 with 5 home runs and 29 runs batted in! He is just so exciting to watch when he is in the field or in the batter's box. The best part is that he's only 29, so he has at least four or five great years in his tank.
Markakis is so great at the plate especially and is a leader in the O's clubhouse. In the future when all their top prospects join Markakis and Roberts, I see a force to be reckoned with in the American League.
#1 Jason Bay
Maybe the greatest aquistion made by Theo Epstein, Jason Bay has had no problem with moving into the Boston spotlight.
Bay has been the perfect replacement for Manny in the middle of the lineup. Bay shows excellent power, speed, and defense every time he plays the game.
The 2004 Rookie of the Year and two time all star shows no sign of slowing down as he's already hit 9 home runs and knocked in 33 runs batted in. He is batting .317.
Bay definitely provides a lot of excitement for the fans and has all the tools needed to be a big time player in the future (if he isn't already)
The runner ups were
Vladimir Guerrero: LAA
Ken Griffey Jr.: SEA
J.D. Drew: BOS
Nick Swisher: NYY
Johnny Damon: NYY
Coco Crisp: KC
Michael Cuddyer: MIN
Jacoby Ellsbury: BOS
These are based on MY opinion, but heck out the Top 15 National League Starting Pitchers later next week