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2016 Outfield Rankings – Top 75

2016 Ranking LogoOutfield is a position that many assume is deep.  That assumption is somewhat correct in the fact that there are plenty of outfielders, but you might be surprised to know that less than half of them did not reach 500 at bats – 42 out of 90 had over 500 to be exact.  Consider this important fact when you are sitting at the draft table, especially if you play in a roto league. It’s nice to look at the pretty numbers, but not many consider the at bats.  More games played means more at bats, which in turns means more potential counting stats. 

If you click on the above link and look at the players over 500, the number of players you would turn your nose up at are few and far between.  Those players below 500, those are the guys you’ll encounter later in the draft.  Those are the players you’ll be filling your team with should you decide to wait on the position.  You can get away with ignoring the outfield in the early rounds, but don’t wait too long.  The longer you wait, the more outfielders you may need to field a team on a nightly basis.

Now on to what you came here for.  Taking part in our rankings will be Tommy Landseadel, Kevin Jebens, Jim Finch, Ron Vackar, Michael Zakhar and Neil (Mister DFS). Our six experts each ranked their top 75 outfielders for the 2016 season. Players marked N/R were not ranked inside the top 75 by that particular person.

If you feel we overlooked someone or would like to debate a player’s ranking, feel free to do so in the comment section below.

Rank Player Team Zak Kevin Neil Tommy Ron Jim
1 Mike Trout Angels 1 1 1 1 1 1
2 Bryce Harper Nationals 2 2 2 2 2 3
3 Giancarlo Stanton Marlins 3 5 4 3 3 4
4 Andrew McCutchen Pirates 6 3 3 5 8 2
5 Mookie Betts Red Sox 4 11 10 8 4 6
6 Kris Bryant Cubs 5 14 5 6 6 12
7 Starling Marte Pirates 7 4 7 12 9 10
8 A.J. Pollock Diamondbacks 12 16 6 4 7 5
9 Jose Bautista Blue Jays 13 9 11 7 11 7
10 J.D. Martinez Tigers 9 8 13 11 12 13
11 Chris Davis Orioles 14 18 9 9 10 8
12 George Springer Astros 8 17 12 15 5 15
13 Justin Upton Tigers 10 15 18 17 19 9
14 Ryan Braun Brewers 11 6 22 14 17 19
15 Charlie Blackmon Rockies 17 33 8 10 13 11
16 Nelson Cruz Mariners 25 7 20 13 18 16
17 Adam Jones Orioles 15 10 23 18 20 14
18 Yoenis Cespedes Mets 23 12 19 16 14 23
19 Lorenzo Cain Royals 20 22 16 20 24 22
20 Carlos Gonzalez Rockies 24 34 15 19 15 18
20 Carlos Gomez Astros 22 21 17 23 21 21
22 Jason Heyward Cubs 16 23 30 22 23 25
23 Kyle Schwarber Cubs 29 36 21 28 16 17
24 Miguel Sano Twins 18 58 14 21 22 20
25 Matt Kemp Padres 26 24 27 25 25 33
Page 2: Players 26-50 Page 3: Players 51-75

You may not agree with the order, but our top 25 are the top 25 outfield choices for 2016.  You need reassurance?  With the exception of Miguel Sano, Kris Bryant and Chris Davis, everyone ranked inside our top 25 also appear in the top 25 for outfielders in NFBC drafts.  Davis, Bryant and Sano are being drafted high enough that even though they are not listed in the OF, their ADP would place them in the top 20.  You will need to act fast to get a top outfielder; almost two-thirds of them are being taken within the top 50 players, and all of them should be gone after round six in standard 12 team leagues.

Players that you would Reach for

Tommy: Although there is a pretty steep drop-off from the super elite outfielders to the next tier, there are plenty of fantasy viable OF bats. For that reason, I prefer to focus on the infield with my first few picks, but I will not pass up on a great outfielder if it presents itself.  I like Miguel Sano’s upside, so I could be tempted to reach a little there. In the middle rounds, David Peralta and Kevin Pillar are two guys who I think get undervalued by many. I would be willing to go a round early on them.

Kevin: Power and speed are important, but so are the high BA options. Andrew McCutchen, A.J. Pollock, Michael Brantley, and Starling Marte could all be top-tier guys in batting average, with true 5-category help.

Jim: Charlie Blackmon is slipping into the third round in some drafts, some even later.  Considering the drop off of double-digit power speed guys as the draft goes on, I would easily consider him if I picked towards the end of the second round.  Michael Brantley has gone as high as round 4, but has fallen much further in some drafts.  I realize he is coming off an injury, but he played injured last year and still managed to hit over .300 with 15 each for home runs and stolen bases.  Then there is Hunter Pence who fantasy owners have downgraded majorly after a off season.  I’d reach a round or two early to procure his services; that means somewhere around the eighth round.

Ron: The ceiling for George Springer is likely higher than anyone in the group of outfielders he’s going to be linked closely to in 2016 drafts. The deeper the draft and the greater the prize, I want high ceiling players. If just one player is going to pull off a 30/20 season in 2016, Springer is the guy who will do it and I’m reaching for him just a tad to make his upside a part of my fantasy roster. A little further down the draft board, the name David Peralta stands out to me and I am far from alone on that observation. You will absolutely have to reach if you want Peralta to be a part of your 2016 plans and he will be worth the draft day cost. 

Zak: I like Gregory Polanco to break out, and he is a bargain where he is being taken now. He showed some progress in the second half and is just 24 years old. Double digit homers and 25-30 steals is attainable with more growth possible.

Neil: Starling Marte is entering his prime age (27), and has increased his slugging percentage and home run output the last three years.  His stolen bases are down a smidge, but he is still a real threat for 30-40 stolen bases.  It would not surprise me one bit if he was the highest fantasy producing Pirates outfielder this year.  Jacoby Ellsbury struggled last year, but if he can stay healthy he can net you top 10 outfield value as the 25th outfielder off the board.  Let’s not forget that he is a year removed from 16 homers, 70 RBI and 39 steals.  I would not bet against a 20 homer 40 stolen base season.  It has been two down seasons in a row for Jay Bruce, but it’s also two seasons in a row with a sub .270 BABIP.  I think Bruce has been a bit unlucky.  He’ll only be 29 when the season starts and his ISO was back over .200 in 2015 after it sunk to .156 in 2014.  I think this is going to be a huge bounce back season.  Get on the train.

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7 comments on “2016 Outfield Rankings – Top 75

  1. i’m in a 12 team keeper and we can only keep 2 players. One of my keepers is Correa and I’m stuck between Mookie Betts, Buster Posey, and Chris Sale for the other. The league is auction draft H2H by the way.

    • Normally in a auction league I’d let salary dictate who I kept, but of the three Betts is the clear choice. Sale is a top 12 pitcher, but with only two keepers I can see a lot of pitching being thrown back. As for Posey, I’ll use conventional draft wisdom with him. He is a 4th round pick whereas Betts is an early second. I could be swayed if you paid an exorbitant amount for Betts, but something tells me you got him for a similar price or possibly cheaper than Posey.

  2. Posey will count $26 towards the cap and Betts $33 (cap is $290 with 23 roster spots) as this is the first year we will go keeper. My only hang up is that the drop off of catcher production is significant after posey, at least in terms of batting average.In addition, he would play more games than the average catcher as he plays 1st base periodically throughout the year. However, with Betts, there are several outfielders that could produce similar numbers and perhaps have a lower profile (Blackmon, Marte,Puig, Cain, Pollock). There are several guys licking their chops to get their hands on Posey. I just wonder am I over valuing him??

    • Both are priced about where they should be, so the deciding factor is if this is roto, points or H2H. You can get by with a McCann type catcher in H2H and even in roto if you can cover a lower batting average, but in points leagues I would easily hold Posey since he’ll score about 100 points more than the next catcher. So keep posey in points, Betts in H2H, and in roto flip a coin between the two.

  3. Thanks. I will keep Betts and find a catcher for the low.

  4. Strategy question….12 team h2h points. Better core? 3 stud bats, 2 aces and a 2nd tier starter or 2 stud bats, a 2nd tier bat, and 3 aces?
    For example, Betts, pollock, abreu, arrietta, price, richards/Ross type or…
    bumgarner, price, arrietta, pollock, abreu, kemp/pence type?

    • In a points league I tend to lean towards pitching since they generally score more. As for which strategy, I’d go with the second – 3 aces, but pick your aces carefully. Arrieta pitched 100 more innings in 2015 than 2014 so he may not be the best pick compared to some pitchers around him. While I like the 3-Ace way, if (for example) the best thre players on your turn are Betts, Arrieta and Greinkie, I’m taking Betts. Plan for 3 aces, but be prepared to deviate and change direction based upon what is available. Remember there are no right or wrong strategies, only wrong picks.

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