Few preseason fantasy baseball tasks are more difficult than putting together OF rankings. Starting pitcher and closer rankings are also tough, but at least we know they’re an exercise in futility even as we’re compiling them. Outfield is different because it feels like a code we can crack (even though we can’t). There are so many players, from all-around studs to one-category sleepers, spread throughout the various tiers, that outfield is really a position that needs its own cheat sheet heading into 2020 drafts.
Once you get past the top 20 or so OFs, how you’re building your specific team is really more important than how the players are ranked below. We might think Kyle Schwarber’s overall impact will be slightly higher than Ramon Laureano’s, but if you need some steals and a higher average, Laureano probably makes more sense for you.
You’re going to be making a lot of decisions like that with your outfielders. The big power-speed guys will go within the first five or six picks of the draft — and then there are a host of big-time sluggers who will go throughout the next couple rounds — but as soon as guys like Starling Marte and Austin Meadows are nearing the top of your queue, you know you have some decisions to make in regards to balancing out your roster.
Like the corner infield spots, you’ll always be able to find 30-HR upside with outfield, even deep into your draft. Finding the guy who hits 37 HRs instead of 25 is what often separates the top tier from the middling teams, and unfortunately, it’s not easy to do. Luck is certainly involved to some degree, but finding guys with clear(ish) paths to playing time and decent peripheral stats goes a long way. It’s also worth taking some chances at this position with your final starter/bench spots because there will always be worthwhile pickups available throughout the year.
As always, the players listed below are ranked as if they’re only eligible at OF. Players eligible at multiple positions may be ranked higher in our overall rankings.
We’ll be updating our OF rankings throughout the spring, so check back for the latest player movement.
Fantasy Baseball OF Rankings
Rankings based on 5×5 H2H leagues with Rs, HRs, RBIs, SBs, and batting average as categories
Position eligibility based on Yahoo default settings (5 games started or 10 games played at a position)
* = not eligible at that position on draft day but expected to play there during the season
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