The Top 100 MLB players: Astros’ view

The founder of this word feast, Chip Bailey, sent me a link to an article from ESPN. The folks over at the self-proclaimed “World Wide Leader in Sports”  have taken on one of those tough tasks in this recent post, so my hat is tipped to them over the effort.

MLB Rank 2023: Rating baseball’s top 100 players (

If you don’t want to page through that article – here are the top 1 to 100 players in the MLB (according to ESPN) condensed for your convenience. Page down, and we will talk on the other side…..

1. Shohei Ohtani SP/DH | Los Angeles Angels

2. Mike Trout CF | Los Angeles Angels

3. Aaron Judge OF | New York Yankees

4. Manny Machado 3B | San Diego Padres

5. Freddie Freeman

1B | Los Angeles Dodgers

6. Juan Soto

RF | San Diego Padres

7. Julio Rodriguez

CF | Seattle Mariners

8. Trea Turner

SS | Philadelphia Phillies

9. Mookie Betts

RF | Los Angeles Dodgers

10. Nolan Arenado

3B | St. Louis Cardinals

11. Sandy Alcantara

SP | Miami Marlins

12. Paul Goldschmidt

1B | St. Louis Cardinals

13. Jose Ramirez

3B | Cleveland Guardians

14. Ronald Acuña Jr.

RF | Atlanta Braves

15. Yordan Alvarez

LF/DH | Houston Astros

16. Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

1B | Toronto Blue Jays

17. Francisco Lindor

SS | New York Mets

18. Austin Riley

3B | Atlanta Braves

19. Gerrit Cole

SP | New York Yankees

20. Rafael Devers

3B | Boston Red Sox

21. J.T. Realmuto

C | Philadelphia Phillies

22. Justin Verlander

SP | New York Mets

23. Corbin Burnes

SP | Milwaukee Brewers

24. Carlos Correa

SS | Minnesota Twins

25. Fernando Tatis Jr.

RF | San Diego Padres

26. Aaron Nola

SP | Philadelphia Phillies

27. Max Scherzer

SP | New York Mets

28. Xander Bogaerts

SS | San Diego Padres

29. Pete Alonso

1B | New York Mets

30. Shane Bieber

SP | Cleveland Guardians

31. Wander Franco

SS | Tampa Bay Rays

32. Max Fried

SP | Atlanta Braves

33. Zack Wheeler

SP | Philadelphia Phillies

34. Carlos Rodon

SP | New York Yankees

35. Adley Rutschman

C | Baltimore Orioles

36. Shane McClanahan

SP | Tampa Bay Rays

37. Luis Castillo

SP | Seattle Mariners

38. Kyle Tucker

RF | Houston Astros

39. Alex Bregman

3B | Houston Astros

40. Corey Seager

SS | Texas Rangers

41. Michael Harris II

CF | Atlanta Braves

42. Framber Valdez

SP | Houston Astros

43. Dylan Cease

SP | Chicago White Sox

44. Jacob deGrom

SP | Texas Rangers

45. Zac Gallen

SP | Arizona Diamondbacks

46. Julio Urias

SP | Los Angeles Dodgers

47. Will Smith

C | Los Angeles Dodgers

48. Andrés Gimenez

2B | Cleveland Guardians

49. Bo Bichette

SS | Toronto Blue Jays

50. Spencer Strider

SP | Atlanta Braves

51. Alek Manoah

SP | Toronto Blue Jays

52. Jeremy Peña

SS | Houston Astros

53. Matt Olson

1B | Atlanta Braves

54. Dansby Swanson

SS | Chicago Cubs

55. Brandon Woodruff

SP | Milwaukee Brewers

56. Cedric Mullins

CF | Baltimore Orioles

57. Jeff McNeil

2B | New York Mets

58. Bryce Harper

RF/DH | Philadelphia Phillies

59. Emmanuel Clase

RP | Cleveland Guardians

60. Jazz Chisholm Jr.

CF | Miami Marlins

61. Tim Anderson

SS | Chicago White Sox

62. Bryan Reynolds

CF | Pittsburgh Pirates

63. George Springer

OF | Toronto Blue Jays

64. Byron Buxton

CF | Minnesota Twins

65. Marcus Semien

2B | Texas Rangers

66. Sean Murphy

C | Atlanta Braves

67. Jose Altuve

2B | Houston Astros

68. Brandon Nimmo

CF | New York Mets

69. Bobby Witt Jr.

SS | Kansas City Royals

70. Cristian Javier

SP | Houston Astros

71. Logan Webb

SP | San Francisco Giants

72. Gunnar Henderson

3B | Baltimore Orioles

73. Corbin Carroll

OF | Arizona Diamondbacks

74. Ozzie Albies

2B | Atlanta Braves

75. Nestor Cortes

SP | New York Yankees

76. Triston McKenzie

SP | Cleveland Guardians

77. Pablo Lopez

SP | Minnesota Twins

78. Joe Musgrove

SP | San Diego Padres

79. Steven Kwan

LF | Cleveland Guardians

80. Yu Darvish

SP | San Diego Padres

81. Kyle Schwarber

LF | Philadelphia Phillies

82. Matt Chapman

3B | Toronto Blue Jays

83. Luis Arraez

2B | Miami Marlins

84. Randy Arozarena

LF | Tampa Bay Rays

85. Kevin Gausman

SP | Toronto Blue Jays

86. Starling Marte

RF | New York Mets

87. Clayton Kershaw

SP | Los Angeles Dodgers

88. Tyler Glasnow

SP | Tampa Bay Rays

89. José Abreu 1B | Houston Astros

90. Willy Adames

SS | Milwaukee Brewers

91. George Kirby

SP | Seattle Mariners

92. Luis Robert Jr.

CF | Chicago White Sox

93. Daulton Varsho

OF | Toronto Blue Jays

94. Willson Contreras

C | St. Louis Cardinals

95. Ke’Bryan Hayes

3B | Pittsburgh Pirates

96. Ketel Marte

2B | Arizona Diamondbacks

97. Lucas Giolito

SP | Chicago White Sox

98. Logan Gilbert

SP | Seattle Mariners

99. Teoscar Hernandez

RF | Seattle Mariners

100. Eloy Jimenez

OF/DH | Chicago White Sox

Some thoughts:

  • Considering there are 30 teams and 100 spots (a little more than 3 spots per team on the average), the Astros placing 8 players (Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, Alex Bregman, Framber Valdez, Jeremy Pena, Jose Altuve, Cristian Javier and Jose Abreu) on this list is quite an accomplishment.
  • Who else might have been on there? A healthy Michael Brantley could have fit towards the end of the list, but his injury last year and his failure to start this season on the active roster definitely knocked him out. Closer Ryan Pressly had to be a consideration, but they only had closers Edwin Diaz (who was removed after his injury) and Emmanuel Clase in the top 100. As good and dependable as Pressly has been, he is not quite up to those two as far as closers go. Jose Urquidy and Luis Garcia have been good, but not in the class it takes to break into this list. Maldy? Oh, come on.
  • We could argue a bit about the Astros’ placement on the list. Yordan Alvarez is basically the 2nd best hitter in the majors but is ranked 15 here. His use as partial DH throttles back on his value, but by most measurements, he should be a top 10 player in the majors. For one – why is Juan Soto ahead of him after coming off a season hitting .242 BA with 27 HRs and 62 RBIs?
  • Along the same lines, I’m struggling with Tucker, Bregman, and Framber, placing between 38 and 42. Would Framber be trailing Carlos Rodon if he was on the Yankees and Rodon was on the Astros? They are pretty similar pitchers, with Rodon having more injury problems over time. What about Luis Castillo? Framber has been a little ahead of him the last couple of seasons. Is Fernando Tatis Jr., who is a super talent really ahead of both Tucker and Bregman with his recent injury history, with him being out the first 20 games of 2023 due to his PED suspension, and with the questions of whether he will be as effective if he is not on PEDs. Pete Alonso is a heck of a power hitter, but is he the overall player that both Bregman and Tucker are?
  • Pena at 52 is higher than I expected, so I’m pleased with that. Altuve makes sense at 67 due to his injury. Cristian Javier feels a bit low at 70, but there is not another starting pitcher on the list until you get to 55, so maybe in some ways, it makes sense. Jose Abreu certainly could top that 89 ranking with a bit of a power surge in the friendly confines of Minute Maid Park.
  • Is there bi-coastal bias here? The first seven players are from teams whose home faces the Atlantic or Pacific, and Philly is barely inland. There are like 34 teams that are in states that are on either coast on this list. That sure feels like a bit of a bias against flyover country.
  • It is interesting to note that there are 6 ex-Astros on the list, including Gerrit Cole, Justin Verlander, Carlos Correa, George Springer, Joe Musgrove, and Teoscar Hernandez. The Astros have successfully navigated the waters after losing so many talented players along the way. This season will be no less a challenge.

Your turn – any thoughts from you on this top 100 list?



41 comments on “The Top 100 MLB players: Astros’ view

  1. Philly pitchers Nola and Wheeler rated higher than Framber and Javier? They certainly didn’t show it in the World Series last year.


  2. So today with almost a regular starting lineup – the Astros have 1 hit through three and it is not Yordan and Luis Garcia got lit up for 4 runs in 3.2 innings
    Maybe we need those young guys back


  3. I have no problem with the list. We have seen all the bias for years and yet 8 players out of the Top 100 seems to place the best team out of the 30 right there at the top where it belongs.
    It does just go to show you how the Astros can draft a player 102nd from a school nobody scouts and he becomes the #52 ranked player in baseball after one season in the majors at a premium position.
    That tells me we pull for a team that gets it and is on a roll.
    As payrolls skyrocket, I think fans and baseball experts are going to hate the Astros even more in the future.


  4. Very happy to see Yordan make solid contact twice tonight. And as long as Pena does not pull something, it’s good to see him hitting. Abreu flat out hits. Focusing on positives only tonight.


    • Peña pulls one – over the wall – for a solo home run and then lined one the other way for an RBI single. Abreu pulls a 2 run double down the 3rd base line and then Meyers brings him in with a dying duck to center.
      And the Astros win 5-4 but none of that matters vs Yordan looking healthy and hitting a couple long fly balls into the wind in center.


  5. Nice comeback with timely hitting to push runs in the 8th across and get the “W”. I am not impressed with McCormick (3K’s). He looked so over matched. Jake was a little better but got called out on strikes because he wasn’t ready to hit. 1st couple of innings umpire had a wide “K” zone and it didn’t help us any. Pena gets two hits with one being a long ball. Yordan didn’t get a hit but made good contact on 2 of 3 plate attempts. Dubon was very Dubonesque 0/4. No way this guy should be anything but a sub. Breggy and Abreu both collected 2 hits with Abreu driving in 2 with a double. Hensley was “meh” and Maldy drew two walks. Dirden had a hit in his only appearance. He should be playing on opening day.


  6. Has anyone ever seen a major league game where the pitcher is pulled with less than three outs and a relief pitcher comes in to finish the inning, then, the pitcher that was pulled, returns to start the next inning on the mound?


    • It’s been a long time but I’ve seen it – the pitcher pulled stayed in the game in the outfield and then returned to the mound
      If he’s pulled out of the game he can’t return


      • I am referring to the pitcher leaving the game completely, going to the dugout, then returning the next inning. It happened today.


      • I’ll give it up. In the Astros game today, Garcia was pulled by Dusty after 3.2 and Sammons came in to finish the inning. Then Garcia came back out and pitched the 5th. The Mrs. and I saw that and even she said, is that legal? Hey! Rules are bent during spring training. And this makes for a great trivia question!


  7. On a Chipalatta note, I just observed the picture on the website banner and noticed something wrong. Come on Chip! Shouldn’t a website dedicated to “All Things Astros” at least have Minute Maid Park on the banner instead of (cough, cough) Coors Field? lol


  8. Hot take – I am a late 80s early 90s baby, so its hard for me to imagine that Bill James would agree that Pena is 52. Then again, there are guys down at the bottom of the list that would have been fighting for their jobs in the steroid era. Maybe his confidence, defense, and (so far) durability count for a lot in the position that is the captain of the defense.

    Bias or just flat out money. Let’s face it, the White Sox, Royals, Brewers, Rockies, these aren’t teams with the largest salaries on the planet. I would expect the NY teams, LA teams, and the other “coastal elites” to buy up the best players after they serve their penance in flyover country. It’s not a coincidence that some of those players also came up through the coastal organizations – they also invest more money in their systems.

    Then there is Yordan. If you think he is 15th, poll GMs. He won’t be 15th on that list. I think every GM in the league would put him in the top 5 guys they would love to have. So maybe we are being a little “flyover countried.”


  9. I don’t really care where pundits or commentators ‘rank’ players. I would much rather our guys be badly underestimated, fly completely under the radar, and then bewilder everyone by outperforming the ‘media darlings’. Some talk loud and pose for ‘money shots’; others quietly take care of business on the baseball field.

    Of course, I also know that the higher ranking the media gives a player, the more money his agent thinks/demands that he is worth – and the more money the coastal powers are willing to cough up to lure him away from us.


  10. OK – tooting my own horn a tad – but I just read’s (spit!) article on the Top 100 and I think I went way more in depth….but then you don’t always get what you pay for.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah but culturally speaking the Gulf Coast is the third coast in this country – the focal point for news and attention is the west and east coasts especially the northern half of the east coast

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Yordan Alvarez is rated the best player on the Astros by the ESPN “panel of baseball experts”. But, even though the Astros were proven the best team in MLB by winning the WS, Alvarez was only the 15th rated player in MLB.
    MLB baseball expert Will Leitch says Kyle Tucker is the one player the Astros can’t live without, even though the ESPN experts say he isn’t even the best player on the team and is only the 38th best player in MLB.
    Anyway, Yainer Diaz has 6 rbi’s in the first two innings of the last game for the Astros in Florida ST. Diaz is batting sixth in the lineup and is the DH.


  12. Corey Julks refuses to surrender the team lead in RBIs. A 2-run home run in the 7th brings his RBI total to 12 – one more than Jose Abreu!

    It’s easy to see why Dusty ‘likes him some Julks’.


  13. After seeing 5 of their teammates being hit by pitches, Astros minor leaguers are not letting up on Cardinal pitchers. It is 24-1 Astros going into the top of the 9th.
    The Cardinals have the best record in all of spring training at 16-6.


  14. If Justin Dirden makes the club and plays twice a week, he’s better off going to Sugarland, although until Brantley shows up, he might be needed.

    I wonder if Chas has separated himself from Jake in Dusty’s eyes at this point? 7 BB’s and 1o K’s. That’s a pretty good start. Out of our regulars last year, his .332 OBP was 4th best on the club. Can we get a .350-.360 OBP out of him in 2023?

    Frenchy is a flat out bad hitter. Hensley has had a rough couple of weeks. I hope Will Wagner is put on second base with Sugar Land and plays 7 days a week.

    If a catcher gets sent down, he’ll get to play most days. Lee might get two days here. Diaz, being more versatile might get three or four starts a week doing something. I’ve been wondering when he might start hitting. Maybe today.

    Pena looks ready to play.


  15. Three touchdowns and a field goal for the Astros’ offense today.
    Twenty first downs [er, hits].
    When it mattered, the defense held as well.
    I do, however, think the Cardinals pitching staff should have been flagged for those 5 illegal hits.

    Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s