Like many other sports, Major League Baseball is delayed in 2020. With this, fantasy baseball is also not operating as planned. However, there is still a possibility of the season happening, even if it is different than the typical Major League season. Should the fantasy baseball season happen this year, a lot of participants will be doing research prior to their draft. Position rankings are a way for people to get an idea of who they might want to target in their fantasy baseball draft. Here is a list of third basemen for the 2020 fantasy baseball season.
Note: To be eligible for these rankings, the player’s first position listed on ESPN fantasy baseball must be third base. For example, since DJ LeMahieu is listed as (2B, 1B, 3B), he is eligible for the second base rankings in this series, but will not be included in the third base rankings.
20. Tommy Edman, St. Louis Cardinals (3B, 2B)
In his debut season, Tommy Edman played in 92 games. He slashed .304/.350/.500 in 349 plate appearances. The Cardinals have some guys like Matt Carpenter on the roster that can make it questionable how much playing time Edman will get.
19. Hunter Dozier, Kansas City Royals (3B, OF)
Hunter Dozier will likely be playing in the outfield a lot as the Royals signed Maikel Franco this offseason. Dozier played in a career-high 139 games in 2019. He had 65 extra-base hits including 10 triples. Dozier could move up in the rankings with another solid year in fantasy baseball.
18. Brian Anderson, Miami Marlins (3B, OF)
Although Brian Anderson saw a slight decrease in his batting average and OBP from 2018-to-2019, his slugging went up. He played in 30 less games in 2019 (126) than 2018 (156) and hit nine more homers on the year, finishing the season with 20. Anderson had 33 doubles and 66 RBIs in 2019.
17. Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers (3B)
Justin Turner saw a spike in playing time last season. The 135 games he played in are the most in a single season since 2016. He tied his career high in homers in a single season with 27. Turner also hit 24 doubles and totaled 139 hits in the regular season.
16. Miguel Sano, Minnesota Twins (3B)
In the five seasons Miguel Sano has played in, his most games played in a single season is 116. The number of games in the next season is questionable with the amount of offense Minnesota has on its roster. In 2019, he played in 105 games, hitting 34 long balls and 19 two-baggers. He finished the regular season with a .576 slugging percentage.
15. Mike Moustakas, Cincinnati Reds (3B, 2B)
Mike Moustakas will be making his debut for the Cincinnati Reds. His slugging percentage was up to .516 in 2019, the second highest of his career. He may be playing at second base quite a bit for the Reds in the upcoming season as Eugenio Suarez is still on the roster.
14. Gio Urshela, New York Yankees (3B)
Gio Ursehla got to play quite a bit with Miguel Andujar being injured for most of the season. In 132 games, Urshela slashed .314/.355/.534. He should continue to get playing time and solid RBI opportunities in the Yankees lineup.
13. Josh Donaldson, Minnesota Twins (3B)
Josh Donaldson has added even more home run potential to the Minnesota Twins, who broke the record for most home runs by a team in a single season with 307. He hit 37 balls out of the yard in 155 games played with the Braves in 2019.
12. Eduardo Escobar, Arizona Diamondbacks (3B, 2B)
Eduardo Escobar had multiple single-season highs in 2019. He had 118 RBIs, 35 home runs and 10 triples which are all single-season highs. Escobar also drew 50 base on balls which helped his .320 OBP.
11. Yoan Moncada, Chicago White Sox (3B)
After a few average seasons, Yoan Moncada had a break out year in 2019. He totaled 161 hits, 64 of them being for extra-bases. His .915 OPS is a single-season high by over .150 points. The White Sox added some offensive players over the offseason, so that could increase Moncada’s chances for things like RBIs or more plate appearances.
10. Vlad Guerrero Jr., Toronto Blue Jays (3B, DH)
Vlad Guerrero Jr. didn’t have an MVP caliber season, but he still produced. He had a .433 slugging percentage which is likely something that some people thought would be higher. He could be closer to the top of this list in the future if he plays to the potential some say he has.
9. Jose Ramirez, Cleveland Indians (3B)
After finishing in third for the AL MVP in back-to-back years, Jose Ramirez struggled some at the plate in 2019. He rebounded towards the end of the season and finished it with 23 homers and 33 doubles.
8. Manny Machado, San Diego Padres (3B, SS)
Although some of Manny Machado‘s numbers were down in 2019, the amount of playing time he gets is still a big factor in his ranking. His 156 games played were his fourth in-a-row with at least that many games played. He hit 32 long balls and 21 doubles in 2019.
7. Matt Chapman, Oakland Athletics (3B)
In each of Matt Chapman‘s first three seasons, he saw an increase in games played and plate appearances from the previous season. He also had a slugging percentage above .500 for the second year in-a-row. Chapman hit an equal amount of doubles and homers at 36 each last season.
6. Eugenio Suarez, Cincinnati Reds (3B)
Eugenio Suarez hit 49 home runs last season, helping him slug .572 in 2019. He tallied 156 hits on the year, 73 of them going for extra-bases. Suarez also totaled 103 RBIs in the regular season. Playing at Cincinnati can help Suarez too, as it is regularly considered a hitter’s park.
5. Rafael Devers, Boston Red Sox (3B)
Rafael Devers had the second most doubles in the league in 2019 with 54. He also hit 32 homers and accumulated 115 RBIs. He surpassed 700 plate appearances on the year as well, which can increase a players’ fantasy value.
4. Anthony Rendon, Los Angeles Angels (3B)
Anthony Rendon led the league with 126 RBIs last regular season. He has since joined the Los Angeles, which could help his fantasy value early in the season. This is due to it typically being warmer in Los Angeles than it is in Washington D.C. towards the start of the season. However, the 2020 season has yet to start, so this may not be the case for the upcoming season.
3. Kris Bryant, Chicago Cubs (3B, OF)
The 2018 regular season was the first in Kris Bryant‘s MLB career that he didn’t reach 600 plate appearances. He got back over 600 in 2019 with 634 on the season. Bryant finished the season with a slash line of .282/.382/.521.
2. Alex Bregman, Houston Astros (3B, SS)
Alex Bregman was the American League’s runner-up for the MVP award in 2019. He had an OPS of 1.015 along with 112 RBIs. Bregman gets multiple opportunities to hit with runners on base with the Astros. His 554 at-bats were his third season in-a-row with at least 550.
1. Nolan Arenado, Colorado Rockies (3B)
Whether a fantasy league uses defensive points or not, Nolan Arenado could still go in the top spot of the fantasy baseball third base rankings. Since 2015, his minimum number of homers hit in a single season is 37, along with at least 157 games played in each of those years.
Feature Image Courtesy of NBC Sports.