The Tampa Bay Rays have been Major League Baseball’s best team to start the 2023 season.
They started the year with 13 consecutive wins and are now 20 games over the .500 mark, having posted a record of 26-6.
The team has received contributions from all of its superstars and is winning at a rapid pace.
Shortstop Wander Franco is one of them.
The 22-year-old is hitting .298 with six home runs and 20 RBI.
He has also stolen seven bases and posted an OPS of .911.
Franco also leads all Major League shortstops in an important category.
The young shortstop has an fWAR of 1.7, which puts him ahead of all other MLB shortstops.
Top 5 SS in #MLB by fWAR:
1 Wander Franco #Rays 1.7
2 Xander Bogaerts #Padres 1.6
3 Geraldo Perdomo #DBacks📷 1.5
4 Jorge Mateo #Orioles 1.5
5 Thairo Estrada #SFGiants📷 1.4
But sure, focus on his self toss before throwing to 1B… pic.twitter.com/21014Hsm84
— Mat Germain (@Mat_Germain_) May 5, 2023
For context, WAR stands for “Wins Above Replacement.”
fWAR is the FanGraphs version of the stat.
Franco has been performing well both on offense and defense.
Recently, Franco managed to flip the ball in the air after making an impressive stop, then proceeded to throw out Bryan Reynolds at first base.
He has taken the starting shortstop position by the reins for the Rays.
He made his MLB debut in 2021 and has since proven to be a truly dynamic player.
And his contributions have helped guide the Rays on their historic run to start this season.
Franco and the Rays will begin a three-game weekend series against the New York Yankees on Friday night.NEXT: The Rays Are Soaring To Must-See Heights