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Updated Points League Rankings Risers and Fallers (July)

Is it feasible to do a weekly H2H league in 2020? Sure. Is it a great idea? Not really. With just under 10 weeks of actual baseball, the whole "sprint" metaphor will become real in a hurry. Total points leagues aren't as popular but make a lot more sense over the course of a 60-game season.

Regardless of how your league proceeds, points leagues must be approached differently from roto, both on draft day and throughout the season. Plate discipline matters more than category specialization and simply showing up to collect IP or AB will make a huge difference, especially in 2020.

Whether you are set to take part in a last-minute draft or simply want to size up the relative strength of your team in an existing league, we have you covered. Here is a final preseason update to our points league rankings, compiled by Nicklaus Gaut, Riley Mrack, and myself. Rather than going position by position, I will highlight some of the biggest risers and fallers since Summer Training began, as well as some sneaky value picks to target late in drafts or in your first waiver run. I won't address the obvious cases of players who have dropped due to COVID-related concerns. Here are the top 250 players in our rankings, followed by analysis, including a few sleepers to keep an eye on.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off. Get access to our exclusive articles, rankings, projections, prospects coverage, 15 in-season lineup tools, daily expert DFS research, powerful Research Station, Lineup Optimizer and much more! Sign Up Now!

 

Top 250 Points League Rankings (July)

Rank Tier Player Name Pos Nicklaus
Gaut
Pierre
Camus
Riley
Mrack
1 1 Christian Yelich OF 4 1 1
2 1 Cody Bellinger 1B/OF 3 2 5
3 1 Mookie Betts OF 6 4 2
4 1 Gerrit Cole SP 1 3 10
5 1 Nolan Arenado 3B 8 5 7
6 1 Alex Bregman 3B/SS 7 6 8
7 1 Jacob deGrom SP 2 7 13
8 1 Mike Trout OF 14 8 3
9 2 Ronald Acuna Jr. OF 11 12 4
10 2 Max Scherzer SP 5 9 14
11 2 Juan Soto OF 9 11 9
12 2 Francisco Lindor SS 13 13 6
13 2 Justin Verlander SP 12 10 15
14 2 Jose Ramirez 3B 10 16 18
15 2 Bryce Harper OF 17 17 12
16 2 J.D. Martinez OF 16 19 11
17 2 Shane Bieber SP 15 14 22
18 2 Freddie Freeman 1B 18 20 16
19 2 Anthony Rendon 3B 22 15 23
20 2 Rafael Devers 3B 20 21 20
21 2 Jack Flaherty SP 19 18 28
22 2 Trevor Story SS 25 26 17
23 3 Mike Clevinger SP 27 22 21
24 3 Trea Turner SS 24 30 19
25 3 Stephen Strasburg SP 23 24 29
26 3 Walker Buehler SP 21 34 25
27 3 Xander Bogaerts SS 34 23 24
28 3 Clayton Kershaw SP 30 25 27
29 3 George Springer OF 32 27 26
30 3 Jose Altuve 2B 29 37 32
31 3 Ozzie Albies 2B 31 29 41
32 3 Luis Castillo SP 33 35 38
33 3 Pete Alonso 1B 37 41 30
34 3 Patrick Corbin SP 40 31 40
35 3 Manny Machado 3B/SS 26 47 39
36 3 Blake Snell SP 39 32 44
37 3 Kris Bryant 3B/OF 41 40 36
38 4 Charlie Morton SP 28 55 43
39 4 Anthony Rizzo 1B 50 52 33
40 4 Fernando Tatis Jr. SS 53 51 34
41 4 Ketel Marte 2B/SS/OF 42 61 46
42 4 Josh Donaldson 3B 36 63 57
43 4 Zack Greinke SP 63 38 56
44 4 Josh Bell 1B 46 43 71
45 4 Javier Baez SS 51 44 66
46 4 Charlie Blackmon OF 73 57 31
47 4 Marcus Semien SS 48 49 64
48 4 Paul Goldschmidt 1B 49 68 45
49 4 Yu Darvish SP 47 54 62
50 4 Carlos Santana 1B 38 28 99
51 4 Trevor Bauer SP 45 53 68
52 4 Jose Abreu 1B 68 45 54
53 4 Aaron Nola SP 59 36 74
54 5 Gleyber Torres 2B/SS 58 76 37
55 5 Matt Chapman 3B 54 69 49
56 5 Josh Hader RP 35 73 72
57 5 Vladimir Guerrero Jr. 3B 87 33 61
58 5 Marcell Ozuna OF 55 70 58
59 5 Nelson Cruz DH 75 58 50
60 5 Starling Marte OF 81 71 35
61 5 Lucas Giolito SP 76 48 63
62 5 Yordan Alvarez OF 106 39 42
63 5 Rhys Hoskins 1B 44 78 67
64 5 Eugenio Suarez 3B 43 86 60
65 5 Matt Olson 1B 74 65 51
66 5 Aaron Judge OF 80 64 48
67 6 Austin Meadows OF 100 46 47
68 6 J.T. Realmuto C 52 77 65
69 6 Eddie Rosario OF 85 56 55
70 6 Jose Berrios SP 61 50 86
71 6 Mike Moustakas 2B/3B 56 66 77
72 6 Nick Castellanos OF 67 67 70
73 6 Michael Brantley OF 92 42 78
74 6 Lance Lynn SP 66 60 100
75 6 Chris Paddack SP 83 75 69
76 6 Michael Conforto OF 69 72 88
77 6 Max Muncy 1B/2B/3B 57 88 84
78 6 Whit Merrifield 2B/OF 62 85 85
79 6 Andrew Benintendi OF 84 62 95
80 7 Giancarlo Stanton OF 113 80 53
81 7 Jeff McNeil 2B/3B/OF 91 59 96
82 7 Tommy Pham OF 79 79 89
83 7 Joey Gallo OF 77 89 82
84 7 Eloy Jimenez OF 93 83 73
85 7 DJ LeMahieu 1B/2B/3B 117 74 59
86 7 Max Kepler OF 70 97 90
87 7 Jorge Soler OF 65 113 81
88 7 Brandon Woodruff SP 60 107 92
89 7 Bo Bichette SS #N/A 94 79
90 7 Eduardo Escobar 2B/3B 82 87 91
91 7 Jorge Polanco SS 72 84 106
92 7 Yoan Moncada 3B 98 93 76
93 7 Kyle Schwarber OF 64 101 105
94 7 Keston Hiura 2B #N/A 82 98
95 7 Adalberto Mondesi SS 112 81 80
96 7 Carlos Correa SS 90 110 83
97 7 Justin Turner 3B 88 91 111
98 8 Tyler Glasnow SP 114 128 52
99 8 Corey Kluber SP 119 102 75
100 8 Tim Anderson SS 104 90 103
101 8 Kirby Yates RP 89 117 93
102 8 Sonny Gray SP 108 92 104
103 8 Shohei Ohtani DH/SP 103 127 87
104 8 James Paxton SP 105 116 102
105 8 Paul DeJong SS 78 99 146
106 8 Yasmani Grandal C/1B 101 122 101
107 8 Franmil Reyes OF 102 112 110
108 8 Corey Seager SS 110 95 120
109 8 Matthew Boyd SP 97 98 133
110 8 Edwin Encarnacion 1B 116 106 112
111 8 Victor Robles OF 120 100 116
112 9 Elvis Andrus SS 123 104 130
113 9 Jonathan Villar 2B/SS 131 129 97
114 9 Frankie Montas SP 95 140 122
115 9 Robbie Ray SP 124 111 126
116 9 Carlos Carrasco SP 133 141 94
117 9 Madison Bumgarner SP 150 109 109
118 9 Yuli Gurriel 1B/3B 96 151 124
119 9 Eduardo Rodriguez SP 111 154 107
120 9 Ramon Laureano OF 164 105 108
121 9 Gary Sanchez C 121 144 113
122 9 Cavan Biggio 2B #N/A 130 123
123 9 Edwin Diaz RP 86 163 132
124 9 Max Fried SP 138 108 138
125 9 Khris Davis DH 126 124 137
126 9 Hyun-Jin Ryu SP 128 135 125
127 9 Bryan Reynolds OF 136 96 157
128 9 Miguel Sano 1B/3B 147 125 119
129 9 Zack Wheeler SP 167 103 127
130 9 Mike Soroka SP 142 142 115
131 9 German Marquez SP 139 114 147
132 9 Liam Hendriks RP 71 195 134
133 9 Roberto Osuna RP 99 159 144
134 10 Mike Minor SP 149 123 141
135 10 Andrew McCutchen OF 122 132 160
136 10 Kenley Jansen RP 125 178 117
137 10 Oscar Mercado OF 166 118 139
138 10 Dinelson Lamet SP 162 133 129
139 10 Jean Segura SS 155 115 158
140 10 David Dahl OF 175 119 136
141 10 Taylor Rogers RP 115 182 135
142 10 Ken Giles RP 94 208 131
143 10 Amed Rosario SS 141 156 140
144 10 Aroldis Chapman RP 109 153 177
145 10 Luis Robert OF 171 147 128
146 10 Eric Hosmer 1B 186 120 142
147 10 Kenta Maeda SP 146 131 171
148 10 Brad Hand RP 135 164 152
149 10 Cesar Hernandez 2B 118 143 202
150 10 Joey Votto 1B 134 145 185
151 10 Lorenzo Cain OF 140 139 186
152 10 Kyle Hendricks SP 168 149 149
153 11 Brian Anderson 3B/OF 157 137 179
154 11 Lourdes Gurriel Jr. 2B/OF 185 138 151
155 11 Justin Upton OF 181 146 148
156 11 Julio Urias SP 160 204 114
157 11 Zac Gallen SP 165 194 121
158 11 Didi Gregorius SS 132 157 193
159 11 Adam Eaton OF 151 126 211
160 11 Ryan McMahon 1B/3B/2B 152 181 155
161 11 Nick Anderson RP 163 188 143
162 11 David Peralta OF 202 121 172
163 11 Shin-Soo Choo OF 195 136 164
164 11 Rougned Odor 2B 148 155 201
165 11 Brandon Lowe 2B 184 150 178
166 11 Willson Contreras C 145 212 162
167 11 Jake Odorizzi SP 156 158 205
168 11 Danny Santana CI/MI/OF 159 172 188
169 11 Jon Gray SP 214 148 165
170 11 Scott Kingery MI/3B/OF 207 152 170
171 11 Renato Nunez 1B/3B 193 161 175
172 11 Tommy Edman 2B/3B/OF #N/A 201 154
173 11 Lance McCullers Jr. SP 153 235 145
174 11 Joe Musgrove SP 178 186 169
175 11 Christian Walker 1B 203 167 168
176 11 Alex Verdugo OF 170 184 191
177 11 Masahiro Tanaka SP 191 168 187
178 11 Andrew Heaney SP 137 238 173
179 11 Hunter Dozier 1B/3B/OF 180 173 195
180 11 Dylan Bundy SP 143 196 215
181 11 Gavin Lux 2B/SS #N/A 176 194
182 11 Marcus Stroman SP 211 170 183
183 11 C.J. Cron 1B 190 202 180
184 11 Hunter Renfroe OF 223 169 182
185 11 Raisel Iglesias RP 130 219 225
186 11 Dansby Swanson SS 161 198 217
187 11 Kyle Seager 3B 204 134 239
188 11 J.D. Davis 3B/OF 176 234 167
189 11 Joc Pederson 1B/OF 220 160 198
190 12 Mike Foltynewicz SP 255 166 159
191 12 William Smith C #N/A 213 176
192 12 Brandon Workman RP 127 215 242
193 12 Nick Senzel OF 218 207 161
194 12 Jesus Luzardo SP 281 190 118
195 12 Hector Neris RP 177 187 227
196 12 Starlin Castro 2B/3B 172 165 255
197 12 Avisail Garcia OF 205 179 210
198 12 Byron Buxton OF 187 245 166
199 12 Matt Carpenter 3B 173 232 196
200 12 Willie Calhoun OF 248 203 150
201 12 Mark Canha 1B/OF 209 180 228
202 12 Mitch Garver C 225 242 153
203 12 Josh James RP 224 #N/A 190
204 12 Ryan Braun OF 107 199 316
205 12 Nomar Mazara OF 231 185 209
206 12 Caleb Smith SP 236 192 200
207 12 Randal Grichuk OF 182 210 245
208 12 Willy Adames SS 199 224 221
209 12 Sean Manaea SP 234 229 181
210 12 Howie Kendrick 1B/2B/3B 129 246 272
211 12 Adam Frazier 2B 144 241 263
212 12 Nick Ahmed SS 169 162 322
213 12 Joey Lucchesi SP 262 193 199
214 12 Jonathan Schoop 2B 206 189 260
215 13 Kevin Newman 2B/SS 215 227 213
216 13 Carlos Martinez SP 285 197 174
217 13 Daniel Murphy 1B 189 250 218
218 13 Kyle Tucker OF 274 220 163
219 13 Luis Arraez 2B #N/A 225 214
220 13 Andrelton Simmons SS 208 205 246
221 13 Niko Goodrum 1B/MI/OF 179 211 270
222 13 Jason Heyward OF 226 206 229
223 13 Salvador Perez C 194 251 223
224 13 Archie Bradley RP 158 252 258
225 13 Mike Yastrzemski OF 239 171 264
226 13 Yandy Diaz 1B/3B 228 183 265
227 13 Garrett Hampson 2B/SS/OF 252 222 204
228 13 Carter Kieboom SS #N/A #N/A 226
229 13 Miguel Andujar DH 290 200 192
230 13 Justin Smoak 1B 213 223 248
231 13 Jesse Winker OF 196 177 315
232 13 Anthony Santander OF 232 248 208
233 13 Jose Leclerc RP 154 286 253
234 13 Kolten Wong 2B 200 221 275
235 13 Luke Voit 1B 260 239 197
236 13 Brett Gardner OF 263 191 250
237 13 Corey Dickerson OF 251 214 243
238 13 Jurickson Profar 2B/OF 174 174 360
239 13 Spencer Howard SP 201 #N/A 271
240 13 Hanser Alberto 2B/3B #N/A 253 219
241 13 Hansel Robles RP 219 254 237
242 14 Craig Kimbrel RP 183 305 224
243 14 Dallas Keuchel SP 238 233 244
244 14 Luke Weaver SP 284 288 156
245 14 Joe Jimenez RP 188 265 276
246 14 Wilson Ramos C 192 300 240
247 14 Robinson Cano 2B 229 217 288
248 14 Austin Riley OF 233 268 233
249 14 Brandon Belt 1B/OF 258 230 247
250 14 Dylan Cease SP 289 #N/A 203

 

Risers

Marcell Ozuna has jumped up from 79 to 58, presumably due to Nick and I professing our mutual love for him each week on the WPC+ podcast. Nick Markakis is out and Yasiel Puig never came in, so Ozuna's everyday playing time and spot as the cleanup man are locked in. It also helps that Freddie Freeman appears ready for Opening Day, so all the pieces are falling into place for Ozuna to succeed.

Kenta Maeda has jumped 18 spots over the past month for our rankers, from 165 to 147 overall, making him SP42 in our points-league rankings. The new schedule that pits regional teams against each other figures to help Central division pitchers the most. In fact, Riley identified two other Minnesota pitchers as great draft values based on the schedule, but someone higher up like Maeda also gets a bump. His Statcast profile from last year was nothing short of outstanding despite a lack of elite velocity.

Maeda moves to a less favorable home park, but the weaker lineups he'll face throughout the short season will more than make up for it.

Alex Verdugo climbs 15 spots, mainly thanks to Nick giving him a 20-spot bump over the past month. The delay has given him time to recover from offseason back issues and his profile as a high-average, low-strikeout hitter (.294 AVG, 13% K% in 2019) make him very appealing in points formats. Much has been made of the Red Sox looking less like a contender this year, but their offense shouldn't lose very much even with Mookie Betts gone. The main issue with Verdugo is the fact he's projected to bat seventh according to RosterResource, which may cost him runs and RBI opportunities. If he finds his way into the top-half of the order, his value could be that of a top-100 player.

Joe Musgrove isn't the most exciting name on a fantasy roster but his consistency and low walk rate are appealing in this format. He walked 5.4% of batters faced in 2019 after a 4.7% walk rate in 2018, which compensates for the mediocre strikeout rate of 22%. If he can bring his ERA closer to his xERA of 4.03 from last year, ideally lower, then he can be an anchor in the middle of your rotation.

All the Yankees outfielder (other than poor Clint Frazier) has seen his stock rise after the long delay to rest and recover. Aaron Hicks has benefited the most, raising up to 320 from 364 in our rankings. That's still barely within the threshold of fantasy relevance, but he is a nice late-round sleeper or streamer to consider. It's almost hard to judge what he can bring to the table because he simply can't stay healthy long enough. If we get some semblance of the Hicks from two years ago when he held a 3.6% K-BB% as opposed to last year's 16% K-BB% then he could be a revelation.

Everybody Loves Howie. Sounds like a 90s sitcom but it should be the tagline for fantasy baseball analysis everywhere. Nobody's stock has risen more than Howie Kendrick over the last month and our rankings are no exception. Kendrick went from 304th overall to 210th in a month's time for a couple of reasons. Ryan Zimmerman opting out of the season, the DH being fully implemented, and everyone realizing how freaking amazing his Statcast numbers were last year. Oh, and the fact that multi-positional eligibility is even more important this year, with Kendrick being one of the most eligible of fantasy bachelors pickups.

No Yoshi puns here. Just raising awareness that Yoshitomo Tsutsugo is going to be a thing this year. He may DH for the Rays initially, but he is eligible at 3B and OF in Yahoo leagues and is just 16% owned. Manager Kevin Cash recently stated that Tsutsugo won't leadoff as previously speculated, but he will hit somewhere near the top of the order. Obviously, we don't know exactly we'll get from him at the Major League level yet, but he is in his prime at 28 and playing time doesn't seem to be a concern any longer. Just hope he doesn't cross any banana peels on the basepaths.

 

Fallers

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that Mike Trout went from the #1 overall player in our June rankings to the eighth spot just ahead of Opening Day. Obviously, this has everything to do with the number of at-bats he may or may not collect due to impending paternity leave and some frightening comments about considering opting out. Nick isn't willing to pay a first-round price anymore, while Riley is holding firm with him at the third spot, whereas I'm the middle man.

It's not a huge decline but Victor Robles tumbled out of the top 100 to 111 overall. His run-scoring and stolen base totals could be underwhelming if he stays in the seventh spot of the lineup. It's not that we're projecting him to be a bust this year; he simply isn't worth his current ADP of 75 in points leagues.

Willie Calhoun can't catch a break and neither can his fantasy owners. He was all of one week into his rookie season before a quad strain landed him on the IL in May of 2019. A month later, he returned and started mashing the ball. He wound up launching 16 homers with 36 RBI and 37 runs scored in the second half of the year. Due to be a popular breakout candidate, he was struck on the jaw by a pitch in spring training, recovered in time for Summer Training, and then suffered a hip injury. Luckily, it appears he may avoid the IL to start the season, so his precipitous drop from 158 to 200 in our rankings should be taken as a sign that his value is depressed relative to what he could produce, assuming he finds a way to stay healthy.

Cardinals reliever Giovanny Gallegos was a popular pickup late last year and a sleeper candidate to earn saves back in the first iteration of fantasy draft season. Now, he appears to be on the outside looking in as Kwang-Hyun Kim has been announced as the closer and Ryan Helsley has made a favorable impression on his manager as well. This isn't directly due to a COVID diagnosis, rather a late arrival at camp after travel issues from Mexico set him back in his preparation. Gallegos could take the role over at some point but even with Jordan Hicks opting out, it isn't guaranteed. Mike Schildt could simply use a committee, which is why we dropped him down to 342, out of draft-worthy range.

 

Sleepers

Here are some players that are lightly owned and ranked outside of our top 250 in points leagues that may warrant a waiver wire add soon.

Ross Stripling (RP/SP, LAD) - With David Price opting out, it appears Stripling is back in the rotation for now. He was one of our biggest risers for that reason, but is still available in 45% of Yahoo leagues. He's never posted an ERA over 4.00 in four Major League seasons and has a career 17.9% K-BB%. He will technically serve as the fifth starter but is set to pitch the second game of the season, which is fortunate because it comes against division rival San Francisco. Even in a swingman or long-relief role, he would have value.

Austin Hays (OF, BAL) - Orioles are usually best avoided, but Hays could be the leadoff hitter for the duration of the season. He showed well last year in a small sample, striking out just 17.3% of the time while posted an expected slash line of .313/.373/.497. I expect him to outperform his projections by reaching double-digit homers with a handful of steals alongside an average in the 280s.

Anthony DeSclafani (SP, CIN) - He doesn't have the best ballpark for a pitcher (OK, it's the worst) but the schedule is favorable for the Reds this year. That helps players like Luis Castillo and Sonny Gray but it also makes DeSclafani an end-of-rotation option. He pitched to a decent 4.29 SIERA which was 30th among qualified starters last year and struck out a batter per inning. He landed on the IL hours before first pitch of Opening Day but is expected to miss just one start before drawing the Tigers in Comerica.

Alex Dickerson (OF, SF) - If you thought the O's offense was bad... The entire Giants lineup is rife with sleepers, mainly because nobody has ever heard of most of them. Buster Posey is out, Evan Longoria and Brandon Belt are hurt, and the team didn't bring in any new blood during the offseason. That means Hunter Pence is back as the cleanup hitter and Alex Dickerson is his support. Dickerson put together a strong start to 2019, hitting .346 before landing on the Injured List. He's had trouble staying healthy his whole career, but if he can show up every day, there's value to be had as a fourth outfielder or utility bat.



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