Third base is one of the toughest positions to predict as we head into 2011.  Even at the top of the rankings there are a ton of questions, but as you get into the middle of the pack you really just don’t know what to expect.  Let’s take a look at how things currently look, but it is almost a certainty that these will get shuffled as the offseason progresses:

  1. Evan Longoria – Tampa Bay Rays
  2. Alex Rodriguez – New York Yankees
  3. Ryan Zimmerman – Washington Nationals
  4. David Wright – New York Mets
  5. Michael Young – Texas Rangers
  6. Jose Bautista – Toronto Blue Jays
  7. Aramis Ramirez – Chicago Cubs
  8. Adrian Beltre – Boston Red Sox
  9. Pedro Alvarez – Pittsburgh Pirates
  10. Martin Prado – Atlanta Braves
  11. Pablo Sandoval – San Francisco Giants
  12. Mark Reynolds – Arizona Diamondbacks
  13. Casey McGehee – Milwaukee Brewers
  14. Scott Rolen – Cincinnati Reds
  15. Ian Stewart – Colorado Rockies


  • A shallow position got a lot shallower in 2010, with people like Kevin Youkilis and Chone Figgins losing eligibility.
  • Can Jose Bautista possibly replicate his 2010 success?  It certainly appears to be highly unlikely at this point.  I’ll really dig into my thoughts on him as we get closer to drafts, but I have a huge fear that he could go “homer happy”, given his 54.5% fly ball rate in 2010.  With the tremendous number of strikeouts, if the ball starts to fall short, his average is going to suffer.  It was a magical year, but with there being a good chance he falls to the 35 HR range, and the potential for him to struggle with his average, he’s not a Top 5 option for me.
  • Can Alex Rodriguez stay healthy?  That’s the big question, though we know he’s going to produce even in limited at bats (125 RBI in 522 AB in ‘10).  He’s getting older at age 35, so his days as one of the top 3B are probably limited.  Still, with his upside, it’s hard to argue selecting him for one year.  If he’s healthy he could be the top third baseman in the league, but he hasn’t played in more then 138 games in the past three years.  Still, it’s hard to pick against him.
  • You can almost jumble No. 7 through 12 any way you want depending on your risk tolerance.  Can Pablo Sandoval and Mark Reynolds rebound?  Will Adrian Beltre repeat his success?  Will Pedro Alvarez take the next step?  There are certainly a lot of question marks.
  • I gave my projection of Michael Young recently, supporting why he’s a Top 5 option.  Make sure you read it for yourself by clicking here.
  • If Ryan Zimmerman had stayed healthy in 2010, we could be talking about his second consecutive 30/100/100 season.  That probably would change your opinion on him, wouldn’t it?  Of course, the potential loss of Adam Dunn has to be taken into account, bringing down his value slightly.  The debate between him, Rodriguez and David Wright is going to be one that goes on all offseason.  We will surely revisit this in the coming weeks, but Zimmerman definitely has the potential to leapfrog Rodriguez in these rankings.  In keeper leagues, it’s an easy call.

What are your thoughts on these rankings?  Whose too high?  Whose too low?

Make sure to check out our early 2011 rankings:


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