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MLB Power Rankings: The Greatest First Baseman in Every Team's History

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MLB Power Rankings: The Greatest First Baseman in Every Team's History
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Pujols is the best first baseman in 2011, but is he the best that the Cardinals have ever had?

First base is a funny position.  

Often, the first baseman is the team's best hitter, but one of its worst fielders.  Many first baseman are both indispensable (to the batting order) and replaceable (in the field).  

Though their impact is sometimes mixed, first basemen are vital to their team's ultimate success.  The 2010 Playoff teams are exhibit A toward that point; the starting first basemen in last year's playoffs were Mark Teixeira (Yankees), Carlos Pena (Rays), Justin Morneau (Twins, injured), Jorge Cantu (Rangers), Derrek Lee (Braves), Ryan Howard (Phillies), Joey Votto (Reds), and Aubrey Huff (Giants).  

Those names represent not only some of the best first basemen, but some of the best hitters in baseball at large.  The position is home to some of the best players in today's baseball and of all-time.

What follows is a list of the best first basemen of all-time for each the current 30 teams.  Using this advanced statistical page from fangraphs.com, I based the rankings on WAR, wins above replacement.  This statistic is an all-encompassing aggregate of a player's value as it relates to the average player at that position and asks the question, if this player got injured and was replaced, how much would the team be losing?  For a season, the average WAR for a full-time starter is 2.

Hopefully that gives some context and criterion for ranking players.  I will organize them by decreasing WAR, so the order of teams will seem random, but it isn't.

Let's get to the list.   

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