On Sunday night, MLB Network continued their top ten rankings by position. The first show was starting pitchers and the Pittsburgh Pirates didn’t get any mentions among the hosts and experts. The second show was left fielders and Starling Marte was coming off a second place ranking last year by MLB Network. Marte was also named the second best left fielder by Buster Olney earlier this month.
These rankings are based on what to expect for the upcoming season. Each show has two hosts who submit their own top tens, plus a panel of experts who give their top ten. The main list for the show though, is submitted by “the Shredder”, which is just their name for the list put together by the show’s researchers based on offense and defense, using “analytic methodology”.
The left field show tonight was hosted by Brian Kenny and Eric Byrnes. Bill James, Vince Gennaro, who is the president of SABR, and Mike Petriello, who is a baseball analyst for MLB.com, were the expert panelists. There was also a fan vote for the first time this year.
Marte ranked third by the Shredder, dropping one spot. He trailed Yoenis Cespedes (who ranked first for Buster Olney) and Ryan Braun.
As for the other rankings from the hosts and experts, Marte ranked first for Brian Kenny for the second year in a row. He was second for Mike Petriello, Vince Gennaro and Eric Byrnes. Bill James had Marte third after putting him fourth last year. The fan vote ranked Marte second.
Last week MLB Network covered third basemen and second basemen. Jung Ho Kang finished eighth according to the Shredder and Brian Kenny ranked him ninth. No one else had him on their list. Josh Harrison went from fifth going into 2016, to being left out of the top ten by everyone. Next Sunday will be shortstops and first basemen.