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The RotoBaller Head-to-Head rankings review series winds down with a view of first base through the lens of our three-man expert panel of fantasy accuracy champ Nick Mariano and premier staffers JB Branson and Bill Dubiel.

The top tier could conceivably have a new kingpin at any point, and not all of our experts believe it is a true three-man top of the crop. The star power drops off quite quickly at this position, yet it does go deep in terms of power and RBI production.

There are more veteran question marks that permeate the position as we start to move into the middle and lower tiers. There is a not of young, promising upside performers here, and the guys at the top are simply steady in higher level productivity.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!

 

First Base Tiered Ranks - H2H Points Leagues (March)

In case you missed it, our very own "Big Pick Nick" Mariano was recently named the #1 overall most accurate industry expert ranker for the 2018 season. You can see his secret sauce below! Additionally, industry legend Scott Engel recently joined the RotoBaller team and provides his insights as well. Scott is an FSWA Hall Of Famer and award winner.

Ranking Tier Player Name Position Nick JB Bill
1 1 Paul Goldschmidt 1B 24 23 16
2 1 Freddie Freeman 1B 26 24 21
3 1 Anthony Rizzo 1B 35 26 26
4 2 Joey Votto 1B 40 33 23
5 2 Rhys Hoskins 1B/OF 39 43 39
6 2 Cody Bellinger 1B/OF 47 48 47
7 2 Matt Carpenter 1B/2B/3B 73 42 38
8 3 Daniel Murphy 1B/2B 77 71 72
9 3 Jose Abreu 1B 70 85 98
10 3 Robinson Cano 1B/2B 97 83 82
11 3 Edwin Encarnacion 1B 94 114 67
12 3 Jesus Aguilar 1B 100 90 90
13 3 Carlos Santana 1B/3B 88 94 105
14 3 J.T. Realmuto C/1B 93 88 114
15 4 Travis Shaw 1B/2B/3B 117 91 97
16 4 Matt Olson 1B 102 109 111
17 4 Joey Gallo 3B/1B/OF 90 122 158
18 4 Max Muncy 1B/2B/3B 162 111 150
19 4 Miguel Cabrera 1B 120 160 155
20 4 Ryan Braun 1B/OF 141 165 131
21 4 Eric Hosmer 1B 161 135 147
22 4 Ian Desmond OF/1B 152 149 143
23 4 Jurickson Profar SS/3B/1B/2B 196 130 125
24 5 Buster Posey C/1B 232 162 152
25 5 Luke Voit 1B 184 189 174
26 5 Justin Smoak 1B 157 228 169
27 5 Yuli Gurriel 1B/2B/3B 214 214 172
28 5 Jose Martinez OF/1B 271 192 140
29 5 Tyler White 1B 165 236 229
30 6 Trey Mancini 1B/OF 198 230 230
31 6 Josh Bell 1B 215 247 242
32 6 C.J. Cron 1B 259 233 220
33 6 Ryan Zimmerman 1B 201 297 238
34 6 Brandon Belt 1B/OF 236 322 218
35 6 Jake Bauers 1B/OF 261 255 279
36 6 Pete Alonso 1B 331 241 236
37 6 Miguel Sano 1B/3B 347 288 179
38 6 Marwin Gonzalez 1B/2B/SS/OF 245 256 316
39 6 Wilmer Flores 1B/3B/2B 191 396 #N/A
40 6 Justin Bour 1B 285 347 290
41 6 Tucker Barnhart C/1B 308 307 #N/A
42 6 Ryan O'Hearn 1B 348 344 314
43 7 Yonder Alonso 1B 448 267 295
44 7 Ehire Adrianza SS/1B/3B #N/A #N/A 342
45 7 Jay Bruce OF/1B 415 282 #N/A
46 7 Kendrys Morales 1B 262 502 297
47 7 Niko Goodrum 1B/2B/3B/SS/OF 370 380 346
48 7 Ryon Healy 1B 432 421 270
49 7 Adam Duvall 1B/OF 473 #N/A 317
50 7 Ronald Guzman 1B 367 427 #N/A
51 7 Albert Pujols 1B 409 522 284
52 7 Eric Thames 1B/OF 436 409 372
53 7 Ryan McMahon 1B/3B/2B 411 401 #N/A
54 7 Mitch Moreland 1B 364 516 340
55 7 John Hicks C/1B 466 382 #N/A
56 7 Colin Moran 3B/1B 459 445 394
57 7 Steve Pearce 1B/2B/OF 455 523 350
58 7 Neil Walker 1B/2B 413 494 #N/A
59 8 Tyler Austin 1B 503 492 367
60 8 Chris Davis 1B 442 486 #N/A
61 8 Rowdy Tellez 1B 482 #N/A #N/A
62 8 Greg Bird 1B 460 515 #N/A
63 8 Dan Vogelbach 1B 445 576 #N/A
64 8 Jedd Gyorko 1B/3B 518 559 #N/A
65 8 Matt Adams 1B 584 536 #N/A
66 8 Mark Canha 1B #N/A 566 #N/A
67 8 A.J. Reed 1B 567 #N/A #N/A
68 8 Nate Lowe 1B 621 532 #N/A
69 8 Victor Caratini C/1B #N/A 585 #N/A
70 8 Miguel Rojas 1B/2B/3B/SS #N/A 592 #N/A
71 8 David Freese 1B/3B 608 #N/A #N/A
72 8 Chris Shaw 1B 646 #N/A #N/A

 

Rankings Analysis – Top Tiers

Tier One

Paul Goldschmidt unanimously still leads our first base rankings, but not by much. He is no longer a first round pick, but a move to St. Louis should keep his mostly impressive all-around output stable, even if he does not quite give you the significant steals advantage he used to.

Freddie Freeman may have not delivered his best season yet in terms of power, and at this point next year, some of our analysts could be considering Freeman over Goldschmidt in any format.

Nick clearly believes that Anthony Rizzo does not belong in the top tier. His homer and run totals last year were disappointing, but JB and Bill are maintaining their high-levels of faith in him.

Tier Two

Nick is definitely not on board with keeping Joey Votto at the top of this tier and I have to agree with him. The overall production was down in a big way last year, and at his advancing age with suspicions of lingering back issues by some fantasy analysts, I am not willing to invest here either.

We could see an improved batting average from Rhys Hoskins this year, which could naturally lead to better H2H Points output overall.

Nick seems to be very skeptical that Matt Carpenter can repeat his power production from last season. He has him nearly 40 spots behind Bill’s overall placement.

 

Rankings Analysis - Middle Tiers

Tier Three

Mariano is more confident in a power rebound from Jose Abreu. JB is definitely down on Edwin Encarnacion and I agree with him. The bat speed is slowing and the plate discipline numbers have been on a downward trend.

There is some skepticism on Jesus Aguilar in some fantasy circles, but it’s not outstanding among our crew.

Bill is not buying into a better season from Carlos Santana. But from an H2H perspective, the strikeout and walk rates were still very good last season. Maybe that is why Nick has him rated higher than the rest of the panel.

Tier Four

Our panel had a lot of confidence in Matt Olson, as did the A’s, before his hamate bone injury struck him down during the opening series in Japan.

Obviously, Nick is willing to take into account Joey Gallo’s pure on-base skills more than Bill. The strikeouts are no doubt frustrating, but he does not hurt you here as much as in 5x5 batting average formats.

JB believes Max Muncy is for real, and the Dodgers’ newfound slugger can also compensate for some Ks with on-base abilities.

Miguel Cabrera had a strong spring, which offers hope for Mariano’s elevated rating of him.

Ryan Braun can still help owners in H2H points formats when he is available, but JB may be expecting a sharper decline this season.

Tier Five

Bill is the biggest believer in Luke Voit. He will continue to wage a war with Greg Bird for ultimate playing time while Aaron Hicks is out. He should still play regularly shuttling between first base and DH until the official decision comes when Hicks returns.

There was a drop in the power department that really turned off JB to Justin Smoak, but the K/BB numbers may remain solid enough to not warrant the overall ranking more than 60 spots behind Nick.

Jose Martinez has really made his mark as a pure hitter and does have legit H2H appeal when he is in the lineup. But as Nick indicates with his lowered ranking, where is the consistent playing time going to come from?

Tyler White did display some prodigious power potential and showed he could offset his strikeouts with some walks last season. Yet JB and Bill seemingly need to be more convinced that he will be impactful over a full regular season.

 

Rankings Analysis – Lower Tiers

Tier Six

This is a thick tier with some interesting names. Trey Mancini was considerably less efficient for H2H purposes in 2018, and the strikeout totals serve up serious alarm bells. C.J. Cron has great power output for this tier, but you will also pay dearly in some other negative departments.

Nick is still maintaining some confidence in Ryan Zimmerman, and will obviously live with what he provides when he is actually active. Jake Bauers has an alluring power/speed combo, but the strikeout numbers drop him to this tier and cramps his upside a bit in the H2H format.

I am with JB on the higher ranking of Peter Alonso. He could really soar among anyone in this group, with the potential of a .280 average and 25-plus homers.

Justin Bour certainly does not win the favor of JB in the move to the American League. At this point, he will give you a good amount of power and on-base skills to offset the strikeouts. Ryan O’Hearn has some power promise but his splits indicate he may not be a consistent starter. He only had two extra-base hits in 37 at-bats versus lefties last year.

Tier Seven

It appears Nick is still not a believer in Yonder Alonso’s newfound power over the past two seasons. He has Alonso over 170 spots lower than JB.

Only JB seems to believe that a move out of New York might somewhat boost the outlook of Jay Bruce.

Maybe it’s because of age, but JB is seriously down on Kendrys Morales.

As Bill indicates, Albert Pujols is still viable as a late flier. He had a good spring and will continue to get some consistent playing time.

If Eric Thames gets pushed back into regular at-bats at any point, he showed in 2017 that he can hit homers in bunches, and also can draw some walks, but the results were often all-or-nothing, too.

Ryan McMahon has not backed down in his battle for playing time with Garrett Hampson this spring, and he has some nifty appeal by this point of the first base pool.

Tier Eight

Chris Davis maybe has some lingering appeal in name only, but he did not impress this spring and was likely passed by in many drafts.

Blue Jays prospect Rowdy Tellez displayed impressive power this spring and could be back from the minors at some point later this year.

If Dan Vogelbach gets more playing time at some point this season, he does have on-base and RBI promise.

Mark Canha appears to be in line for more quality playing time with Olson out, but he will only be part of a platoon with Jurickson Profar.

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