Cleveland Indians' Jose Ramirez looks back
Cleveland Indians' Jose Ramirez looks back after being tagged out while attempting to steal second base during the first inning of a baseball game against the Texas Rangers, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Sam Hodde)


Mike Shara

Now that we’ve ranked the pitchers, we’re going to start moving around the diamond, seeing which positions are the deepest and which ones look like you might not want to wait too long to grab one.

Today we’ll start with third basemen. I’m not going to lie – it’s surprisingly thin, with very few sure things. There are a couple of studs still in their primes, some young players who have had one good season, some old guys who are hanging on to starting jobs (or get paid a lot so they keep getting a chance) and a few kids who might put it together this year. My advice? Don’t wait too long. Once this list gets into the double digits it gets dicey quickly, as you’ll see. Some players here are eligible at other positions, and I’ve noted where that’s the case and what the other positions are. If you end up with anyone not on this list as your starting third baseman, you’re doing sports wrong.

RK      PLAYER                                 MLB TEAM                OTHER POSITIONS?

1          Jose Ramirez                          Cleveland
the only proven power/speed combo at this position, very few more valuable at any spot.          

2          Rafael Devers                         Boston
might be the only elite guy here who could still get better.

3          Manny Machado                    San Diego                  
he doesn’t run much anymore but he plays almost every single day.

4          Alex Bregman                         Houston
after three years of spectacular hitting, 2020/21 were…good. How much did injury matter?

5          Nolan Arenado                       St. Louis                     
move to St. Louis didn’t hurt too much – another guy who loves to play every day.

6          Anthony Rendon                     LA Angels
struggled with injuries last year but got MVP votes each of the previous four years

7          Austin Riley                             Atlanta
struggled in April, then went nuts (after I released him), won’t sneak up on anyone now.

8          Kris Bryant                              ???                              1B, RF, CF, LF
desirable for his multi-positional eligibility, but likely most valuable here

9          Adalberto Mondesi                Kansas City               
you’re paying for elite SB and speed – everything else is a crapshoot. Huge ceiling, though.

10        Wander Franco                       Tampa Bay                 SS
his eligibility at two spots helps – his impressive skills don’t necessarily play huge in fantasy.

11        DJ Lemahieu                         NY Yankees                1B, 2B
power looked gone last year – though having a sports hernia all season will do that to you.

12        Justin Turner                          LA Dodgers                
a crafty hitter who loves big games. Steady if unspectacular, getting older (37 this season).

13        Matt Chapman                       Oakland                     
elite defense ensures he’ll play – Aug/Sept numbers saved a horrible first half (sort of).

14        Yoan Moncada                       Chicago (AL)              
OBP up in ‘21, power down, he doesn’t run at all and he’s 27. Is this all he’s going to be?

15        Chris Taylor                            LA Dodgers                 2B, SS, LF,CF,RF
you love his versatility. I don’t know if you want him as your everyday 3B.

16        Eugenio Suarez                      Cincinnati                    SS
still has huge power. Contact problems give you pause – maybe he’s worth it at short?

17        Ke’Bryan Hayes                      Pittsburgh                   
statistical profile hasn’t blown anyone away yet. Many feel like there’s WAY more in there.

18       Josh Donaldson                     Minnesota                  
aka Sunk Cost. He’ll have a few weeks where he goes nuts, but otherwise…

19       Ty France                                Seattle                         1B, 2B
Kyle Seager’s retirement means a steady spot. Can he increase his power?

20       Jaimer Candelario                  Detroit            
led AL in doubles last year at age 27. Can some of those turn into HRs?


***only as back-ups unless your league has huge rosters.

Luis Urias, MIL (2B, SS)                                           Patrick Wisdom, CHC (1B, LF)
Josh Rojas, ARI (2B, SS,LF,RF)                                Eduardo Escobar, NYM (1B,2B)
Gio Urshela, NYY (SS)                                              Jonathan Villar, ??? (2B, SS)                        
Bobby Dalbec, BOS (1B)                                         Ryan McMahon, COL (2B)
Cavan Biggio, TOR (LF)                                            Joey Wendle, MIA (SS,2B)

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