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Rotoworld Rewind

Rotoworld's Top 50: MLB

by Nathan Grimm
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Who were the most popular players in Rotoworld’s MLB section in 2015? Check out our top 50 based on traffic to player pages. Click on any of the links below to see all of our top-50 player reviews:

 

Overall Top 50 | NFL | MLB | NBA | NHL | BPL | GOLF | NASCAR | NFL DRAFT

 

 

1. Kris Bryant, Cubs

 

Bryant became a sensation in 2014 when he hit 43 homers with 110 RBI and 118 runs scored in the Cubs' minor leagues, and he didn't disappoint in his 2015 debut. The 23-year-old swatted 26 homers with 99 RBI and 87 runs scored en route to a clean sweep of the National League Rookie of the Year award voting. The brightest young star on the most fun offense in baseball, it's no wonder he's No. 1 on this list.

 

2. Hector Olivera, Braves

 

Olivera was the latest Cuban star to get big money in MLB when he signed a six-year, $62.5 million deal with the Dodgers in May. Shockingly, the Dodgers included the 30-year-old in a massive deal at the trade deadline, bailing just two months into the six-year contract. Up to speed and now on a Braves team devoid of much major league talent, Olivera should be given every opportunity to break out in 2016.

 

3. Alex Rodriguez, Yankees

 

Any headlines A-Rod made in the two years prior to last season were primarily for off-the-field activity, but a resurgent 2015 season reminded everyone that Rodriguez still has some life left in his bat, too. The 40-year-old hit 33 home runs with 86 RBI and 83 runs scored this past year, leading the Yankees back to the postseason for the first time since 2012. His time is running out, but A-Rod will once again be a fascinating player to watch this year.

 

4. Josh Hamilton, Rangers

 

Like it's been for most of his career, most of the traffic generated by Hamilton was due to the multitude of injuries sustained over the course of the 2015 season. Shoulder surgery and injuries to his left knee, hamstring and groin all contributed to Hamilton playing just 50 games last year. Hamilton's best days are behind him, but the former No. 1 overall pick is still an intriguing player for his big-game ability.

 

5. Jose Fernandez, Marlins

 

Fernandez was one of the most interesting cases of 2015 as people wondered what version of the pitcher would show up upon his return from Tommy John surgery. The 2015 version looked an awful lot like the pre-surgery version, with Fernandez posting a 2.92 ERA, 1.16 WHIP and 79/14 K/BB ratio over 64 2/3 innings. With a full season of full health on tap, the electric young pitcher should be one of the game's most exciting players once again in 2016.

 

6. Yasmany Tomas, Diamondbacks

 

There may not have been a bigger question mark heading into last season than Tomas after the Diamondbacks committed six years and $68.5 million to the Cuban defect last December. The debut wasn't exactly what was expected -- after being touted for his power, Tomas hit just nine homers in 118 games -- but he'll be given an opportunity to play every day in 2016. With a year under his belt, Tomas should tap into more of that power moving forward.

 

7. Rusney Castillo, Red Sox

 

Like Tomas, Castillo's first full season in the majors was largely disappointing. The 28-year-old spent half the season injured or at Triple-A, batting .253/.288/.359 in 80 games with the Red Sox. Also like Tomas, Castillo has better days ahead, with a year of experience and a clear path to playing time on the horizon.

 

8. Yasiel Puig, Dodgers

 

Puig, another popular Cuban player, has been a lightning rod for criticism in his first three seasons in the majors. Whether Puig brings it on himself with immature behavior or he gets a bad rap from fun-hating baseball curmudgeons is in the eye of the beholder. Whatever the case, Puig should continue to be must-watch television this year.

 

9. Bryce Harper, Nationals

 

Harper has long been viewed as baseball's Next Big Thing, and he put it all together in 2015. The phenom, who just turned 23 after the season ended, batted .330/.460/.649 with 42 home runs, 99 RBI and 118 runs scored last year on his way to a unanimous National League MVP selection. Still younger than players in the league, Harper isn't going anywhere for a long time.

 

10. Yoan Moncada, Red Sox

 

Moncada received an international record $31.5 million signing bonus from the Red Sox in February and he immediately delivered, batting .278 with an .817 OPS, eight homers and 49 stolen bases at High-A Greenville. The 20-year-old is still a few years away from the majors after playing just 81 games since 2013. Once he arrives, Moncada should be a star in short order.

 

11. Anthony Rendon, Nationals

 

Rendon appeared to be a star in the making in 2014 when he scored an NL-best 111 runs while hitting 21 homers and stealing 17 bases, but injuries to his knee, oblique and quad held him to 80 games last year. Now healthy and still just 25 years old, there's still time for the shine to return to Rendon's star. He and Harper combine to form one of the game's best young one-two punches on offense.

 

12. Yoenis Cespedes, Mets

 

Before Puig, Castillo or Olivera, there was Cespedes. The 30-year-old Cuban outfielder has enjoyed plenty of notoriety since debuting, even serving as the inspiration for a website named after his family's get-togethers. He's likely to play for his fifth organization since 2012 when the season begins in April.

 

13. Troy Tulowitzki, Blue Jays

 

After years of talk about Tulo being dealt by the Rockies, the team pulled the trigger ahead of the trade deadline this past season. Tulowitzki, now a member of the Blue Jays, is still one of the most dangerous offensive shortstops in the game. And at 31 years old, Tulo still has a few good years left in him.

 

14. Carlos Gomez, Astros

 

Heading into the 2015 season, Gomez was one of the most dynamic players in the league on both offense and defense. Injuries helped contribute to a down year, with Gomez batting just .255/.314/.409 with 12 homers and 17 steals, but the Astros still paid a steep price to acquire the 30-year-old at the deadline. He should be a central piece of a young, exciting Astros club this year.

 

15. Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins

 

Stanton is known for his prodigious power, and the Marlins recognized his value when they signed him to a record 13-year, $325 million contract in November 2014. Hamate bone surgery on his left hand ended Stanton's 2015 season in June, but he resumed a hitting program in early December and is expected to be 100 percent by the time spring training starts up. That's good news for baseball fans.

 

16. Carlos Rodon, White Sox

 

Rodon made a name for himself at North Carolina State University and was made the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft by the White Sox. He wasted little time getting to the majors, tossing 139 1/3 innings for the Sox this past season, and he showed why he was valued so highly, posting a 3.75 ERA with 139 strikeouts. At 23 years old, he'll only keep getting better.

 

17. Chris Davis, Orioles

 

Davis broke out in 2013, hitting 53 homers with 138 RBI, and he showed that it wasn't a fluke by mashing 47 homers with 117 RBI last season. It was good timing, as he's a free agent for the first time this winter. He's expected to command big-time money from some team in need of big-time power.

 

18. Mike Trout, Angels

 

This is the only baseball-related list on which Trout will appear below the top one or two spots, as the all-everything outfielder remains one of the game's best players. The 24-year-old has finished first or second in American League MVP voting in each of his first four full seasons in the big leagues. Perhaps the only surprising thing is that Trout has only won the award once to this point.

 

19. Carlos Correa, Astros

 

The Astros made Correa the first overall pick in the 2012 MLB Draft, and he hasn't disappointed. Correa made quick work of the minors and batted .279/.345/.512 with 22 homers and 14 steals in his first 99 MLB games after debuting last season. The 21-year-old is at the forefront of the next wave of young superstars set to take over the league.

 

20. Alex Guerrero, Dodgers

 

Guerrero defected from Cuba and signed a four-year, $28 million deal with the Dodgers in 2013. He didn't make much noise in the majors until this past April, when he proceeded to hit nine homers over the season's first two months. Despite that, he's struggled to gain traction in MLB and will likely return to a reserve role in 2016.

 

21. David Price, Red Sox
22. Matt Harvey, Mets
23. Devon Travis, Blue Jays
24. Cole Hamels, Rangers
25. Ben Zobrist, Cubs
26. Jung Ho Kang, Pirates
27. Javier Baez, Cubs
28. David Wright, Mets
29. Hanley Ramirez, Red Sox
30. George Springer, Astros
31. Hunter Pence, Giants
32. Corey Dickerson, Rockies
33. Joc Pederson, Dodgers
34. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
35. Sean Doolittle, Athletics
36. Miguel Sano, Twins
37. Johnny Cueto, Giants
38. Jose Reyes, Rockies
39. Byron Buxton, Twins
40. Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers
41. Stephen Strasburg, Nationals
42. Steven Souza, Rays
43. Alex Cobb, Rays
44. Matt Moore, Rays
45. Addison Russell, Cubs
46. Justin Verlander, Tigers
47. Kyle Schwarber, Cubs
48. Noah Syndergaard, Mets
49. Jorge Soler, Cubs
50. Josh Donaldson, Blue Jays