Fantasy Baseball Player Rankings – First Basemen


Fantasy Baseball Player Rankings

Updated 2/21/11



Kyle Stafford – @KStafford32

Player Rankings by Position:


First Base

Second Base


Third Base

Outfield… coming soon

Starting Pitchers… coming soon

Relief Pitchers… coming soon

Closers… coming soon


The rankings are based upon the following:

Random Variance Score shows the results random variance had on a player’s 2011 season and the probability that a player will exceed or regress in 2012. Scoring is a -5 to +5 scale that measures several sabermetric categories that reflect if a player is prone to regression.

The Mayberry Method a 0-5 scale of a fantasy players Power, Speed, Batting Average, and Playing Time.

Health & Age- Player is given a score A to F based on the combination of health history and age/regression.

Runs Above Replacement (RAR)- Estimated number of runs a player will generate above his replacement

On Base Plus Slugging Average (OPS)- Combines On Base percentage plus slugging percentage to show a players overall performance. Elite players will bat .900 or higher. Stars will bat .800 or higher. The average player will bat above .650. A bad score is anything under .650


1. Joey Votto, Cin

Age: 28   2011 Stats: .309-29-103

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS







You can’t get a better example of an all around 1st baseman. He hits for power, average, and runs the bases well. He hits both RHP and LHP, and his walk rate shows pitchers fear him. In 2011 he showed a power surge in the second half, 18 HRs. We have yet to see the best from Votto.


2. Prince Fielder, Det

Age: 28   2011 Stats: .299-38-120


Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






With Prince signing with the Tigers, I am still dumbfounded on how he is a good fit for Detroit. I see how they needed a replacement for V-Mart, but I am still searching how a $214 mil makes them better than they were in 2011. Fielder will obviously play 1B/DH, so that adds a valuable DH to those AL Leagues out there. His ceiling in the past is .299-50-141. Changing leagues and moving to Comerica Park, I see a “down” year for Prince. The biggest drop will be in his power. He will have to hook a lot of balls to right. He also goes to a lineup with a lower OBP, and less speed. That equals less RBI oppurtunities and a higher walk rate. Count on .270-30-100, which is still a great season….just not $214 mil great.


3. Albert Pujols, LAA

Age: 32   2011 Stats: .299-37-99

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






Pujols had his worst season .299-37-99, which would be a career year for majority of the league. The Angels lineup should provide equal if not more RBI opportunities for Pujols. Random Variance shows he is due a rebound, +2. Pitchers seemed to have found a way to pitch him by pounding him inside. It showed by him receiving the fewest intentional walks he has ever received in a season. With Pujols regressing, it is safe to say he will have great year in 2012, but he is 32….Allegedly.


4. Adrian Gonzalez, Bos

Age: 30   2011 Stats: .338-27-117

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






The overall numbers show that Gonzalez had a career year, OPS of .955 and BA of .338. Had a drop in power, which has to be due to the comeback of shoulder surgery. Fenway Park is built for him, I could see a healthy Gonzalez having a shot as the top fantasy 1B in 2012.


5. Mark Teixeira, NYY 

Age: 32   2011 Stats: .248-39-111

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






From what I hear from the “experts”, Teixeira is undervalued by fantasy owners. His falling batting average (.308 in 2008 to .248 in 2011) and declining OPS does not warrant him to be a top 5 First Baseman. He does have elite power, hits in an All-Star linup, and the metrics predict a bounce back year in 2012. At 32 he is a safe pick for now but I would not invest in a big way on him.


6. Eric Hosmer, KC

Age: 22   2011 Stats: .293-19-78

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






You can’t get a better keeper pick than Hosmer. He is compared to Joey Votto often. He is doing more at 22 than Votto was doing at 25. I would overpay for this talent yesterday. His ceiling is .330-40-110.


7. Paul Konerko, CWS

Age: 36   2011 Stats: .300-31-105

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






Konerko is still putting up elite metrics at 36. Age is always a concern, but he will be undervalued because of his age. Don’t be afraid to add him to your team. 2012: .290-30-100


8. Ryan Howard, Phi 

Age: 32   2011 Stats: .253-33-116

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






Howard’s torn ACL and declining numbers in 2011 suggest we have seen the best already. Now as age settles in, be ready for the fall. I strongly believe this will be his last season in Philly. His elite power will be the only true asset to invest in. Keep track on his rehab, hopefully he is ready for Opening Day.


9. Freddie Freeman, Atl

Age: 22  2011 Stats: .282-21-76

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






Freeman is a young player on the rise. I wouldn’t expect All-Star stats, but is a strong keeper and displayed great power in his first full year. His contact rate was low in 2011 which could suggest low expectations. At 22 and on a strong Atlanta team, the risk is worth taking. 2012: .260-25-80


10. Lance Berkman, Stl

Age: 36   2011 Stats: .301-31-94

Rand Variance Mayberry Health / Age RAR OPS






Berkman showed what he can produce when healthy. All of the metrics show the numbers are solid and that if he can stay healthy you should expect a repeat. I would not expect 500 AB and he lost the protection of Pujols in the lineup. The move to Firstbase should limit the chance of injury.



If you would like to explore more in-depth about Advanced Metrics, here are some amazing resources/people that have made a priceless impact on the way I evaluate players and it has shown in the success I have each year. I do not get any kick backs from this list, just like to promote great materials/information when I see it.  – Ron Shandler is amazing, buy Baseball Forecaster… it’s my “Fantasy Bible” – Ray Flowers gives simple, but great wisdom on the world of Fantasy Sports. Follow him on twitter @Baseballguys – Bill James is the Godfather of SABR, If you are new to the game here is where you start to learn advanced metrics


Questions? Comments? Follow me on Twitter @KStafford32




Fantasy Baseball 2012


The Know-It-All’s Fantasy Prep



Fantasy Baseball 2012

Kyle Stafford – @Kstafford32

After a long hiatus due to family and job changes, I am back. So lets get to work. Your 2012 Fantasy Baseball season is approaching fast. Most leagues will draft in March and there are many formats to play on. I enjoy the traditional 5×5 Roto League. There are many spinoffs to the traditional Roto-Style, but they all have the same base. If you are in a Keeper League, you are examining your roster and the possible draft pool. I feel for the Ryan Braun and Victor Martinez owners out there. Between now and opening day, there will be a variety of subject matters that I will break down. Everything from the Minor Leagues, International Talent, Draft Formulas, Picking a League, and everything in between will be covered. If there is anything that you the reader would like to discuss or if you have a questions/comments, feel free to contact me via twitter @KStafford32 or comment below.

For Starters here are some quick points on offseason moves/news that I find noteworthy:

– Coming to America, the Yu Darvish arrival

I have been waiting for this guy since it was rumored he was coming to the states in 2009. I wouldn’t overdraft on him like I did on Tsuyoshi Nishioka last year. (Yes I admit my mistakes)

 – Ryan Braun shooting up???

Being a “Baseball Traditionalist”, I love guys like Ryan Braun, or so I thought. None of this is good for the game. Players must continue to be held accountable for their actions. I am for even greater penalties, but that is for another article.


– Victor Martinez out for the season

His torn ACL takes away a guy that qualifies at so many valuable positions for deep leagues. Martinez also provided valuable protection in that lineup for Miguel Cabrera. Going to be a long summer for Detroit Fan.

– No Love for Prince

Am I the only one completely shocked that here we are in the middle of January and Prince Fielder is still a Free Agent? If the Nationals do sign him, as I predict, the NL East will be the most compelling division in baseball.

 – The Padres loading up

Yonder Alonso, Carlos Quentin, Edinson Volquez, Houston Street, Andrew Cashner all added via trade this offseason. It has to be exciting being a Padres fan for 2012 and beyond.


Questions? Comments? Follow Me on Twitter @KStafford32