As I introduced on Tuesday, I will be ranking position player-pitcher in the coming few days. Today, I will be ranking the bottom 10. Of note is this list features some really good players, and sometimes even really good pairs. This is decent evidence of the distribution of talent in baseball- even some of the worst teams, like Arizona, Colorado, and Houston, have at least one really good player. But enough preface, now I present the bottom ten pairs in all of baseball:
30: Arizona Diamondbacks, Josh Collmenter/Paul Goldschmidt:
As I was saying, there are some really good players on bad teams. Paul Goldschmidt is really, really good, a borderline MVP candidate in each of the last two years. The problem with this pair is quite obvious-Josh Collmenter really nothing special. That said, he’s the team’s opening day starter, and until Patrick Corbin returns from Tommy John surgery, half of the worst pair in baseball.
29. Minnesota Twins, Phil Hughes/Brian Dozier:
Whereas the Diamondbacks have great disparity between their two frontrunners, the each of the Twins pair are similar in their level of talent. While both Huges and Dozier are perfectly serviceable players, neither is really anything special, not as the star of a team. Like many things in Minnesota, there’s nothing special about this group, but a future pairing of Byron Buxton and Alex Meyer may have the mouths of Twins fans salivating.
28. Colorado Rockies, Jorge De La Rosa/Troy Tulowitzki:
This is another pair like the Diamondbacks in that it has one superstar and one meh pitcher. Tulowitzki is of course awesome; if he had stayed healthy he would possibly have won the MVP over Clayton Kershaw last year. De La Rosa is a totally serviceable pitcher, certainly, but nothing about him stands out, especially as he continues to age. Jonathan Gray and Eddie Butler being on the horizon could have this pair looking up as well.
27. Atlanta Braves, Craig Kimbrel/Freddie Freeman:
The choice of best Braves pitcher was interesting. Julio Teheran is a really awesome young pitcher who, with another step forward could reach quite a lofty ceiling. That said, Craig Kimbrel is in the midst of a stretch of seasons as good as any reliever in baseball. He’s flat out unhittable out of the back of the bullpen. Now, that said, he’s still a reliever, which is why this pair ranks so low.
26. Milwaukee Brewers, Matt Garza/Carlos Gomez:
Carlos Gomez is a really cool player, one of the most fun to watch in baseball. Matt Garza is basically the opposite.
25. Baltimore Orioles, Chris Tillman/Adam Jones:
There really aren’t many players in baseball as fun as Adam Jones. He has, somewhat surprisingly, become a consistent 30 homerun threat while playing solid centerfield defense. Between him, Manny Machado, Matt Wieters, and JJ Hardy, the Orioles have a lot of fun players on offense. Their pitching could limit their chances of repeating as AL East chance, with Tillman leading an overall lackluster group. Kevin Gausman taking a next step could do wonders for the team and possible future iterations of this list.
24. Houston Astros, Dallas Keuchel/Jose Altuve:
Jose Altuve has quickly transformed from sort of a gimmick to one of the game’s elite players. Keuchel took a drastic leap forward himself, and with steady gains, could cause the Astros to rise a lot on this list.
23. Kansas City Royals, Yordano Venture/Alex Gordon:
Losing James Shields hurts the defending AL champs both in their 2015 playoff hopes and on this list. Yordano Ventura has the potential to be a really fun pitcher, but still is more flash than success. If he takes that next step, though, he could ascend to among the game’s best pitchers.
22. Boston Red Sox, Rick Porcello/Hanley Ramirez:
Rick Porcello is a really solid pitcher, and therefore doesn’t do justice how bad the Red Sox rotation is. That said, Ramirez and the offense could be awesome, and in many ways this team could be a more extreme version of the aforementioned Orioles.
21. New York Yankees, Masahiro Tanaka/Brett Gardner:
Masahiro Tanaka’s awesomeness is a testament to how high the Yankees are on this list. Brett Gardner is a really solid player, but hardly up to par for the title of Top Yankees Position Player. If the Yankees miss the playoffs for a third straight year, it’ll be in large part because of a lack of positional star power (if they make it, hopefully it’s on the back of a 50-dinger year from A-Rod Tha Gawd).