Despite missing significant time over the past three seasons, Kevin Kiermaier still remains among the best center fielders in baseball.
MLB Network continued their rankings of the top position players at each position around the league and have now moved onto the outfield, more specifically: center field.
MLB Network’s Top 10 CF
- Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels
- Cody Bellinger, Los Angeles Dodgers
- Lorenzo Cain, Milwaukee Brewers
- Aaron Hicks, New York Yankees
- George Springer, Houston Astros
- Charlie Blackmon, Colorado Rockies
- A.J. Pollock, Los Angeles Dodgers
- Starling Marte, Pittsburgh Pirates
- Harrison Bader, St Louis Cardinals
- Kevin Kiermaier, Tampa Bay Rays
When healthy, Kiermaier is the best defensive outfielder in the game. Since the start of the 2016 season, Kiermaier has put up 103 defensive runs saved, with the next closest outfielder being Mookie Betts (93), who has played in just shy of 1500 innings more than Kiermaier over that time.
Kiermaier is an amazing defender and that’s why he finds himself on the top ten.
However, his offensive production took a huge step back in 2018, mostly due to injuries. After a 2017 campaign, in which he produced a 112 wRC+ and walloped 15 home runs over just 98 games played, Kiermaier was held down to a 78 wRC+ and seven home runs during the 2018 season.
In 2019, Kiermaier will look to stay health and regain his offensive footing, while bringing his usual flare to the outfield.