MLB is filled with talented third baseman, but the Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels, and Houston Astros may have the very best of the bunch.
Projected Top 3 Third Basemen in MLB For 2021
Jose Ramirez, Cleveland Indians
Jose Ramirez is the Cleveland Indians’ best and most consistent offensive weapon, and he is primed for another fantastic season in 2021.
He was a clear-cut MVP candidate in 2020, slashing a fantastic .292/.386/.607 with 17 homers, 45 runs, 46 RBI, and 10 steals.
Ramirez had an excellent 164 weighted Runs Created Plus (wRC+), or, to put it another way, he was 64% better than his peers.
Even more impressive is the fact that Cleveland’s thumper led the league in Wins Above Replacement (WAR) with 3.4 in just 58 games.
MLB leader in WAR, per Fangraphs, is the Indians' Jose Ramirez: https://t.co/rRz4PhQs23
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) September 23, 2020
Some say he should have won the MVP award over Chicago White Sox’s first baseman Jose Abreu.
He is more than capable of replicating those numbers in 2021, and his offensive, defensive, and baserunning contributions make him one of the premier third basemen in MLB right now.
Anthony Rendon, Los Angeles Angels
Anthony Rendon came to the Los Angeles Angels before the 2020 season, signing a mammoth seven-year deal to give the Halos another top hitter to join Mike Trout in the lineup.
Rendon didn’t disappoint, as he slashed a very good .286/.418/.497 with nine round-trippers and a 154 wRC+.
Rendon has a keen batting eye that allows him to work more walks (16.4 BB%) than he strikes out (13.4 K%), which is extremely rare for a slugger.
Defensively, the former Washington National flashed the leather to the point he had a positive 3.7 defensive rating according to Fangraphs.
Rendon is a proven performer in the regular season and the playoffs, is among the league’s best and most consistent hitters, and is also great defensively, and all those traits make him one of the best third baseman in the league.
Thank you for 7 amazing years Anthony Rendon. So many incredible moments, none bigger than the HR in Game 7 of the World Series. Godspeed, Tony Two Bags. pic.twitter.com/1LUYSakErj
— Rudy Gersten (@DCBarno) December 12, 2019
During the 2020 campaign, he was the second-ranked third sacker according to Fangraphs’ version of WAR, behind Ramirez.
Alex Bregman, Houston Astros
If you look at the WAR leaderboards in Fangraphs for the 2020 season, you won’t see Alex Bregman, as he had a subpar year by his lofty standards.
He hit .242/.350/.451 with only six homers in 42 games, which is very modest considering that he is a career .283/.381/.521 hitter.
However, let’s not forget the fact that Bregman led the league in WAR with 8.5 in 2019, and ranked sixth in 2018.
It’s pretty clear that Bregman is as talented and consistent as they come, and the Houston Astros know that, with better health and a longer season, his numbers would have been top-notch last year as they were in 2018 and 2019.
For this season, Bregman decided to pack on some extra muscle and hit the gym: he is determined to return to his dominant levels and leave 2020 well behind.
2021 Best MLB Third Basemen Power Rankings: Expect a monster season from Astros' Alex Bregman https://t.co/hHgYsyVE2h
— SportsRadio 610 (@SportsRadio610) March 16, 2021
Bregman has the potential to be the league leader in WAR, let alone pace all third basemen in the category; he is that good.