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Digging Deeper into Outfield - 2013 Fantasy Baseball OF Rankings


As a follow up to RotoBaller's RotoBaller's 2013 Outfield Rankings with ADP Commparison article, here is a little more info on the top 30 outfielders to be on the lookout for in 2013 fantasy baseball. Whether it's speed, power or a combination of both, the outfield has it all.

We often make reference to keeper potential in our articles; if you are interested in a player's keeper potential and have any questions or advice requests, ask RotoBaller in our live chat or custom advice area.

1. Ryan Braun - A phenomenal all-around five-tool player, who in his first season without the protection of Prince Fielder, still hit 41 HR. He has looked better and better for his third consecutive season.

2. Mike Trout – You will have a tough time finding more production from an outfielder who played in only 139 games. If you wanted to argue that he is the #1 player in fantasy, I'd have a tough time fighting with you. He will play more games in 2013, have lower stats than he did in 2012 and still could end up being the #1 fantasy player. That's how good he is.

Andrew McCutchen3. Andrew McCutchen - The Pittsburgh lineup last year was middle-of-the-road, but McCutchen still put up a huge career year. His average will come down to about ~.300 this year, but all the HR, RBI, R and SB should still be there-- that's five-tool goodness.

4. Matt Kemp - He missed some time last year due to injury, but he is back in 2013, and with the offense in the Dodgers' lineup, he can't and shouldn't be overlooked. Rely on Kemp for power and RBI-- i.e., don't necessarily expect 40+ steals. Look for both his RBI and R total to be north of 100.

5. Giancarlo Stanton - Giancarlo will hit you home runs. He has proved that in his 373 career major league games, averaging 31 HR in his first three seasons. Statistically, he is coming off his best season and showing no signs of slowing down, however you can't say the same about the Marlins lineup. 93 career HR but only 232 RBI-- it's a situation that certainly won't be improving in 2013.

6. Carlos Gonzalez - "CarGo" missed a little time in 2012, but managed to still light up the stat sheet with 22 HR, 20 SB and a BA over .300. Be wary of Gonzalez, though, as his name will come up in trade talks and if you own him you should consider doing the same. He reaps the benefits of playing in Denver, hitting .338 at home and .259 away. Most of his other statistics reflect a similar pattern, however if doesn't get traded, his 81 home games per season merit nice production and one of the best five-tool players.

7. Josh Hamilton - Everyone in the Angels’ lineup is going to have value, and Hamilton is one of the best. He was scary good for most of the first half of 2012, hitting 27 HR through the first 79 games. He was above average for the balance of the season, but now with the Angels, expect some gaudy fantasy stats. Check out RotoBaller's Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep: Josh Hamilton for a deeper look.

8. Jose Bautista - Toronto has been completely made over, despite the fact that they were competitive in 2012. Jose doesn't mind one bit, though. Since his breakout 54 HR campaign in 2010, he has has been one of the best power hitters in MLB. Despite suffering a bad wrist injury last year, you should look for a bounce back year for Jose with even more protection and RBI opportunities in the new offense.

9. Justin Upton - One of my biggest disappointments of last year and he was still pretty good! If he transitions well into Atlanta, look for 2011 Upton rather than 2012 Upton. He's capable of putting up first-round value, but he also might turn out to be one of those guys whose arrival we're always waiting for.

10. Matt Holliday - One of the most underrated and unappreciated hitters. He will get you consistent HR and RBI while maintaining a solid BA. If Allen Craig and Carlos Beltran can stay healthy, Holliday will have an opportunity to provide consistent and solid power and run-production numbers.

Jason Heyward11. Jason Heyward – He bounced back from a brutal 2011. In 2012 Heyward hit 27 HR and stole 21 bases, though his speed is somewhat of a surprise. The addition of both B.J. and Justin Upton will bolster the lineup, and if Brian McCann can bounce back from last year, Heyward will be in line for a ton of runs and RBI; with a slight growth in power skills, he could easily vault into the top-10 OF.

12. Adam Jones – Adam is another player coming off a career year in which he paid his fantasy owners dividends. I don’t think anyone was expecting 30+ HR and 100+ R, but the O's lineup has not changed much and while the Orioles over-achieved in 2012, there is nothing to suggest they, or Jones, can’t do it again.

13. Adrian Gonzalez – Gonzalez played enough games to earn him OF eligibility. Don’t expect the same thing in 2013 season, so keep that in mind in keeper leagues. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take full advantage of Gonzelez' positional flexibility this year though - the Dodgers' roster is full of stars including Carl Crawford, Matt Kemp, Andre Either and Hanley Ramirez. All in all, regardless of where you start Gonzalez, he will provide you with 20+ home runs, 100+ RBI’s and .300+ BA.

14. Yoenis Cespedes - In his rookie campaign Cespedes shined. He is a poor man’s Matt Kemp, who you can acquire 4-5 rounds later. Unfortunately the offense lacks much support for him, but he will still make things happen with both his bat and his legs. Check out RotoBaller.com's Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep: Yoenis Cespedes for a longer profile on this emerging slugger.

15. Jay Bruce – As his BA declines, his HR, RBI, R and SB go up. We will take it. This lineup is absolutely stacked with talent, and Bruce should eclipse 100 RBI and 35 HR for the first time.

16. Bryce Harper - He was out-shined by fellow rookie Mike Trout but do not look past his fantasy value. The Nationals added a true leadoff man in Denard Span to hit in front of Harper, and the rest of the lineup contains guys that will allow them to score a ton of runs. Harper is only 20 years old but could be a first-round player as soon as next year.

17. Jacoby Ellsbury - People have forgotten about his 32-HR, 119-run 2011 season-- and maybe they should, because he will never hit 32 HR in a season again. However, Ellsbury is hitting in a lineup that will allow him to score 119 runs IF he stays healthy. He is being drafted much later than his potential value might indicate, so you shouldn’t be scared to take a chance on Ellsbury.

18. B.J. Upton - He will have every opportunity to drive in a lot of runs. Upton is motivated playing alongside his brother, and his offensive production should be similar to last year. That said, he hasn't passed a .255 BA since 2008, and right now he is being drafted in the second round on average, which is crazy high for a guy who will hurt your team's BA so badly.

19. Austin Jackson - Before getting hurt late in the 2012 season, Jackson was enjoying a big breakout season. He ended up missing over 20 games due to injury, and still had career highs in home runs, RBI and batting average. Jackson is extremely underrated and he can surpass all his career highs in 2013 as he is leading off for one of the most dangerous offenses in baseball.

20. Allen Craig - Craig is ranked 10th in our 1B rankings and is labeled as a major sleeper. As we point out, if he had played a full season his line would be as follows: 103 R, 30 HR, 125 RBI and a .307 BA. Those types of numbers can’t be ignored. The problem is Craig has a long history of health concerns. He is still a potential fantasy stud.

Shin-Soo Choo21. Shin-Soo Choo - Choo is leading off for an extremely talented offensive lineup that includes Joey Votto (#3 1B), Brandon Phillips (#5 2B) and Jay Bruce (ranked #15 above). Choo will score runs, steal bases and not have to worry about carrying the team as he had been asked to do in Cleveland. This move boosted Choo's stock a lot.

22. Hunter Pence - While his batting average has turned me off a little bit, he consistently hits 20+ HR and contributes 80+ in both the R and RBI categories. The Giants' lineup hasn’t changed much, so I'm expecting similar results. He is undervalued right now in drafts only because of his flukey low average last year. Draft with confidence.

23. Alex Gordon - Leading off for a young team that is steadily improving. If Billy Butler continues to do what he does and Eric Hosmer and Salvador Perez continue to develop, Gordon will put up similar numbers to what he did in 2012, which includes almost 100 R and a .300 batting average.

24. Curtis Granderson - He will be sitting on your DL for a little while but when he returns he will get you elite level R, HR and RBI. His 2011/12 season averages include 119 R, 42 HR and 112 RBI. Remember that he will miss some time at the start of the season on the DL, but take advantage of this if people are avoiding him altogether. Draft him, stash him and enjoy the perks in final two-thirds of the season, and during your playoffs when it counts most!

25. Michael Bourn - Time will tell how the Indians new-look offense will mesh together. Bourn will steal you bases and score you runs without question. Pair Bourn up with a power guy and get the best of both worlds. Be wary of his declining SB totals though.

26. Mark Trumbo - Trumbo set career highs in almost every offensive category and the Angels rewarded him with protection duties for Josh Hamilton. Trumbo is no longer under the radar, but he should undoubtedly hit 25+ HR with over 90 RBI. His BA will drag him back.

27. Ben Zobrist - Zobrist has 2B, SS and OF eligibility. Keep that in mind as we'd encourage you to start Zobrist at either of those two positions over outfield. Zobrist was a fantastic fantasy player in 2012 and was consistent all season long for his owners. He had his best month during your playoffs when he scored 16 R and 20 RBI in the month of September.

28. Alex Rios - I always own him during his off year. Could this be the year he finally puts together two good years in row? It's something he hasn’t done since his Toronto days, and I wouldn't count on him to start now. He's a five-category player if he can maintain his 2012 numbers, but he's a five-category drain if he can't.

29. Desmond Jennings - In his first full season, Jennings provided exactly what you would expect from such a highly-rated prospect. His 31 SB and 85 R were better than expected. If he puts up those same stats and improves on his batting average over a full season, Jennings will be rated much higher for 2014.

30. Carlos Beltran - I wish Beltran was a DH in the American League, but alas, he is not. He is the starting right fielder for the Cards and that scares me. He has been healthy over the past couple of years, but I just have a hard time trusting him to stay on the field. That said, you won’t find his 2012 offensive production at this stage of the draft. In fact, to get this production you need to look at Adrian Gonzalez (ranked #13 above and #6 among 1B). Beltran is a good value at his present ADP.

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If you've missed them, be sure to also check out RotoBaller.com's other pre-season 2013 fantasy baseball positional rankings for more in-depth analysis:
 

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