ESPN missed the mark with their ranking of Alex Bregman

Former LSU baseball star Alex Bregman is ranked among ESPN’s top 100 MLB players.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that former LSU baseball standout Alex Bregman is ranked among ESPN’s top 100 MLB players.

What’s a bit surprising, however, is where he’s ranked.

Bregman, despite being the runner up in the AL MVP race last year to Mike Trout, came in at No. 12 on ESPN’s list.

Here’s the top 12.

  1. Mike Trout — Los Angeles Angels
  2. Gerrit Cole — New York Yankees
  3. Jacob deGrom — New York Mets
  4. Christian Yelich — Milwaukee Brewers
  5. Mookie Betts — Los Angeles Dodgers
  6. Cody Bellinger — Los Angeles Dodgers
  7. Max Scherzer — Washington Nationals
  8. Ronald Acuna Jr — Atlanta Braves
  9. Nolan Arenado — Colorado Rockies
  10. Francisco Lindor — Cleveland Indians
  11. Juan Soto — Washington Nationals
  12. Alex Bregman — Houston Astros

Those are all great players, but I don’t think there’s any doubt that Bregman should be ranked among the top four position players in the game. The number simply don’t lie.

Trout is obviously number one. There’s no denying that. Cole is extremely overrated at No. 2 (he didn’t even win the AL Cy Young last year), but I’m not here to debate pitchers vs position players.

Bregman was fifth in OPS among all hitters in 2019, behind only Yelich, Trout, Bellinger and Nelson Cruz. The former LSU star was second in WAR (wins above replacement player) behind Bellinger. That tells you that Bregman, who plays one of the most important positions on the diamond (and also played a lot of shortstop last season due to Carlos Correa’s stints on the IL), is one of the top all-around players in baseball.

I can’t help but assume that Bregman’s involvement in the 2017 Astros sign stealing scheme is the reason he’s not ranked higher on this list. But that would be a terribly poor excuse.

In 2017, the Astros were alleged to have stolen signs at home. And MLB found no wrongdoing by Houston in 2019.

Bregman led MLB in road OPS last season at 1.109 (minimum 200 plate appearances). I think that alone should squash any doubt about Bregman’s abilities as a hitter.

ESPN got it wrong. They looked at names and headlines instead of numbers.

Alex Bregman is one of the game’s best hitters and fielders. He’d be a cornerstone piece for any franchise. And he’s absolutely a top five MLB player.