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MLB Network continues to roll out their “Top 10 Players Right Now” for each position, and on Wednesday, it was time to talk first basemen.
Despite an up-and-down 2020 season, Mets first baseman Pete Alonso ranked seventh on the list, with 2020 NL MVP Freddie Freeman taking home the top honor while Paul Goldschmidt and Luke Voit rounded out the top three.
MLB Network creates these rankings using a system they call “The Shredder,” where a compilation of advanced and traditional stats combine with other offensive and defensive metrics to try to create the most complete picture of a Top 10 for each group.
For Alonso, his ranking as the seventh-best first baseman in the game was a drop from his third place ranking this time last year, but it still puts the 26-year-old in some elite company, as 2020 AL MVP Jose Abreu also made the list at No. 4 following his standout season.
It was always going to be difficult for Alonso to follow up his historic 2019 rookie campaign in which he set a rookie record with 53 home runs to go along with 120 RBI and a .260/.358/.583 slash line. In 2020, he started off slowly, but still managed to end the season with 16 home runs and 35 RBI in 57 games, though his slash line dropped to .231/.326/.490.
Still, Alonso has proven to be among the best pure power hitters in the game, and his engaging personality will keep him a Mets fan favorite for years to come.
And in case you might be wondering where Dominic Smith ranked on this list after his outstanding 2020 season, he was included instead on The Shredder’s left field rankings, where he started 21 games in 2020, compared to the 22 games he started at first base. Smith ranked sixth among left fielders, thanks mainly to his career-best .993 OPS.