Top 5 Outfielders In The MLB Right Now

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Outfielders are a critical part to any Major League Baseball team. Most serious contenders will have at least one high-level player in their outfield. Corner outfielders, right and left fielders, are expected to be serious threats at the plate while center fielders are typically lighter hitting and most speed-focused (of course, there are always exceptions- like Andrew McCutchen and Shin-Soo Choo.) For this list, I will be utilizing factors such as batting average, OBP, SLG, homers, RBIs, WAR, wRC+ (adjusted runs created),  and UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating- for fielding.)

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  • metalhead65

    you have t find a spot on there for Jay Bruce. besides his bat he is the best right fielder out there,nobody runs on his arm.

    • Brandon

      Sorry but he has not produced consistently to be a top 5 outfielder in the MLB.

      • Josh Bresser

        This. Not to mention that, if he could hit homers at nearly the rate he does at home on the road and avoid his long cold streaks, he’d be an elite player.

    • Josh Bresser

      I’m a fan of the Reds, and I personally like Jay Bruce, but I don’t think he comes close to any of the guys on the list. Defensively, he’s ranged from meh to average (according to UZR.) His bat, if anything, would land him on the list. If he can start consistently producing at a high level instead of these quick hot streaks and long, drawn out cold streaks, then his numbers will be in line with everyone else on this list.

      If I did a top 20 outfielders list, he’d probably be on there at number 15 or so.

      • metalhead65

        seriously number 20? way way to low! I am old school and do not care about the metrics everybody uses to bolster their fantasy teams and players. how can you possibly have metric for defense other than errors? I go by what I see when watching the games and in most of the ones I see he makes at least 1 great catch and nobody ever takes an extra base on him. your right in he does need to be more consistent and I think he would be if dusty chanced the batting order. I would move votto to second and move Phillips and bruce up. votto would have more at bats and be able to drive in and score more runs. Phillips average would go up while still getting his rbi’s with votto and choo in front of him. with guys on base when he comes to the plate Bruce will see better pitches and drive in more runs and raise his average. he will always have strikeouts as all home run hitters do but I think he would be more consistent and so would the whole reds offense if they made the lineup out like this. I know this will never happen because dusty is stubborn and determined to keep cozart in the 2 spot where he will continue to be a automatic out. he is a first pitch rally killer if there is someone on base automatically hitting into a double play or swinging at a pitch a foot off the plate and striking out if no one is on base.

        • Josh Bresser

          Yeah, you’re right, 20 did seem a bit low. 10-15 is more realistic.

          But, errors are a pretty bad way to determine defensive ability. If a ball falls in front of an outfielder with subpar range (like Shin Soo Choo), it’s not counted as an error, it’s just a hit. The way they calculate UZR and the like is pretty interesting, here’s a indepth look at it- http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-fangraphs-uzr-primer/