We’re barely two weeks into the MLB offseason and people are losing their minds without MLB games. That includes me too. Come back baseball! While baseball and fantasy baseball season never really ends for us fanatics, especially dynasty leaguers, these winter months prove to be the least busy time of the year. While it’s never too early to prep for your 2020 fantasy baseball drafts, right now is a great time for some reflection and gazing into the future. The latter is what we’re going to be discussing today as I project the top-25 players for fantasy baseball in 2025.
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Projected Top-25 Players for Fantasy Baseball in 2025
2025 Opening Day Age in Parenthesis
1. Ronald Acuña Jr., OF (27)
As much as I love Juan Soto, it’s hard not to have Ronald Acuña atop this list. With his monster power/speed combination and solid batting average, you simply cannot put a ceiling on his fantasy value. There is some swing and miss to his game, sure, but as long as he doesn’t let that get too out of hand, Acuña will likely have a few more .280+/30+/30+ seasons under his belt by 2025. Asking for the moon isn’t even enough if some schmuck approaches you in trade talks.
2. Juan Soto, OF (26)
The Goato will still be doing Goat-esque things as he enters his physical prime in the year 2025. With how good Juan Soto already is right now, it’s certainly enticing to dream about how good he’ll be a few years from now. His lower SB upside (compared to Acuña Jr.) keeps him out of the top spot, but we’re looking at arguably the best hitter in baseball over the next decade with the potential for many .300+/35/10 type seasons. If Soto doesn’t have an MVP award by 2025, I’ll be shocked.
JUAN SOTO CRUSHED IT. NATS LEAD.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 30, 2019
3. Wander Franco, SS (24)
Oh yeah baby! Wander Freaking Franco at #3. The combination of raw tools and feel for hitting that we’re seeing from Wander already at age 18 is something I’ve never personally seen from an 18-year-old. The all-around upside here is enormous with one of the best hit tools and plate approaches you’ll ever see with the potential for .320/30+/20+ seasons, even by 2025 when he’ll be just 23 years old. And the fact that he’ll likely still be a short stop in 2025 is the icing on the cake.
4. Jo Adell, OF (25)
If you wanted me to pick my next Ronald Acuña Jr, it would be Jo Adell. His combination of hit tool, raw power, and speed is unmatched in the minors and will soon be giving Major League pitchers nightmares. The big statistical numbers haven’t quite been there yet for Adell, but it’s only a matter of time before you see his name in the first round of fantasy drafts with .300/40/30 within reach.
Jo Adell absolutely crushed this ball to extend Team USA's lead.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) November 2, 2019
5. Fernando Tatis Jr., SS (26)
It almost feels a little naughty to be putting Fernando Tatis Jr at #5. His all-around offensive upside is very similar to Jo Adell’s with a monster AVG/HR/SB ceiling and he plays a premium position of shortstop that is ALWAYS coveted in fantasy drafts. Tatis Jr. very well could be the #1 fantasy option in 2025 and I wouldn’t be the least bit shocked by it. One slight area of concern, however, is the back injury. Let’s cross our fingers and hope durability isn’t a long-term issue for him. That’d be a real shame for a talent like this to not be fully 100% unleashed on the world.
6. Mike Trout, OF (33)
Alright, I can’t let Mike Trout slip any further. The one and only reason that I have Mike Trout down at #6 instead of in the top-5 still is due to his style of play. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned about him continuing to miss chunks of seasons as hits his 30s. This is one of the best players of all-time and still should be a first-round fantasy asset for at least the next five seasons.
7. Luis Robert, OF (27)
When it comes to strength and athleticism, few, if any, can match the combination Luis Robert possesses. With his double-plus speed, above-average hit tool, and plus raw power, the potential is here for a .280/25/40 player at peak. Heck, we might see that type of production within the next few years, which is why Robert checks in at #6 on this list. All the tools are here for a future fantasy first-round dynamo for years to come.
8. Yordan Alvarez, DH/OF (27)
What JD Martinez has done over the last few seasons is what I project Yordan Alvarez to do annually, and maybe even more than that. That’s how good this kid is. Even with zero speed upside and the chance you’ll only be able to slot him in at UT most seasons, the four-category upside here is simply too robust. We’re likely looking at a .300/40 threat for years to come that should also rack up the runs and RBI moving forward hitting in the heart of a damn good Astros lineup.
9. Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B (26)
Don’t let the fact that Vladdy Jr. didn’t meet expectations in his rookie year sour your outlook on him ONE STINKING BIT. He was a rookie for crying out loud! Not all rookies dominate out of the gate, even ones as special as Vladimir Guerrero Jr. What I said about Alvarez above can be applied here to Vlad with monster upside in every category besides stolen bases. He might be a first baseman by this time, but that doesn’t matter to me. It might actually help to be honest, as the first base position seems to be getting thinner than my father’s hairline each year and the hot corner continues to deepen.
10. Cody Bellinger, 1B/OF (29)
The 2019 NL MVP will still only be 29 in 2025 and likely still one of the best power hitters in the game. With his power, 40-homers should be the norm moving forward and Belly made big strides at the plate with his contact skills and approach, making it much more likely that he can remain above .280 on an annual basis.
11. Julio Rodriguez, OF (24)
Oh yes, Julio Rodriguez is THAT good. Still only 18 and in the low levels of the minors, J-Rod is an advanced bat with tools to dream on including massive raw power and explosive athleticism. If he continues to improve as a hitter, there’s .300/35/15 upside here that he could very well already be at by 2025.
12. Marco Luciano, SS (23)
Rank Marco Luciano and J-Rod whichever way you want to. The upside is very similar with both young stud prospects with Luciano having a touch more power and J-Rod a bit more SB upside. Luciano should be in his 2nd or 3rd Major League season at this point and should already be pushing for top-10 fantasy status.
13. Bo Bichette, SS (27)
During his time with Double-A New Hampshire in the Eastern League, I got to see a ton of Bo Bichette. The guy is a hitting machine with a significant power/speed blend to go with it. Bichette didn’t take long to flash his .300+/25/35 upside and will likely be at or near that level within the next few seasons. Him and Vlad Jr. in one lineup is going to be a treat for the next several seasons.
14. Rafael Devers, 3B (28)
After teasing us with his monster upside, Rafael Devers broke out in a massive way in 2019, proving that he’s one of the best hitters in the game already at age 23. He’ll be in the heart of his prime in 2025, likely with more .300/100/30/100 seasons under his belt.
– 30 home runs
– 108 RBI
– 119 runs
Rafael Devers is only 22 years old. pic.twitter.com/ymfSPxS6l1
— Red Sox (@RedSox) September 19, 2019
15. Christian Yelich, OF (33)
The ascension of Christian Yelich to his current MVP level has been fun to watch. He can do it all and doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon. This is the type of hitter that should remain at a high level into his 30’s with strong across the board offensive contributions.
16. Alex Bregman, 3B (31)
The 2019 AL MVP runner up will be on the wrong side of 30 in 2025, but this is the type of hitter I expect to still be a top-25 guy at that stage of his career. In each of his four seasons so far, Bregman has improved in the following categories every season: R, HR, RBI, AVG, OBP, SLG, OPS. While we might not see 40-homers from him often, with his AVG/OBP/HR upside and ability to add around 10 steals annually, Bregman has what it takes to remain an early-round fantasy asset into the 2025 season.
17. Walker Buehler (30)
It didn’t take long for Walker Buehler to establish himself as one of the best pitchers in the game and arguably the #1 SP for dynasty leagues. He has the arsenal, command, and pitchability to dominate the Majors for a while and will still be only 30 in 2025.
18. Jarred Kelenic, OF (25)
If any prospect in the minors has the chance to become the next Mookie Betts, a great place to start is Jarred Kelenic. With a plus hit tool, plus speed, and budding raw power, the .300/25/35 upside with Kelenic cannot be ignored. This is a very polished and talented bat that should form a dynamic middle of the order duo with Julio Rodriguez.
19. MacKenzie Gore, SP (26)
Unless a meteor wipes out civilization as we know it, MacKenzie Gore should be challenging for the title of the top pitcher in baseball by 2025 at the absolute latest and likely well before that. Gore’s combination of a nasty arsenal and above-average to plus command is going to land him atop the Padres rotation and in the Cy Young Award talks each and every season for most of the next decade.
20. Francisco Lindor, SS (31)
The reason Francisco Lindor is still on this list and Trea Turner just missed is because Lindor can do a lot more than just steal bases. Yes, Turner can too obviously, but the rest of Lindor’s game is more robust than Turner’s and should keep Lindor in the top-25 in 2025. Granted, 2025 might be the last year for Lindor in the top-25.
21. Eloy Jimenez, OF (28)
Although Eloy Jimenez didn’t come out of the gate punching, he certainly ended 2019 with some real haymakers as you can see in the tweet below. The power Jimenez possesses is off the charts and should translate into 40-homers more often than not. The hit tool might not lead to .300+ seasons like originally projected, but Jimenez should be able to settle in around the .280 range with big HR/RBI/R numbers.
Eloy Jimenez since the beginning of August…
199 AB, .317 AVG, 10 2B, 13 HR, 38 RBI, 30 R
— Eric Cross (@EricCross04) September 22, 2019
22. Gerrit Cole, SP (34)
We’ve seen pitchers like Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer remain elite into their mid-30’s and that’s exactly what I anticipate happening with Gerrit Cole. He has the nasty stuff, command/control, and workhorse frame to turn into the next Verlander/Scherzer and dominate opposing lineups well into his 30’s.
Gerrit Cole fastball, knuckle-curve, slider overlay. 🔥⚾️🤢👑
Without a doubt, one of the most incredible pitching performances I have ever watched. #Astros
— Lance Brozdowski (@LanceBroz) October 6, 2019
23. Jasson Dominguez, OF (22)
Just when you thought I was gonna groove you a fastball down the heart of the plate, I break off a slider and paint it on the outside corner at the knees. That was the long-winded way of saying I wanted at least one bold pick on this list. Although, when you see the raw tools of Jasson Dominguez, you might not think it was so bold after all. The Martian, as he’s called, has plus tools as far as the eye can see with legit .300/30/30 upside.
24. Gleyber Torres, 2B/SS (28)
WHAT! Gleyber Torres is only at #24? Calm down for a second. Gleyber Torres is a phenomenal talent, but I just can’t rank him higher as his all-around offensive upside isn’t quite as high as others above him as he doesn’t add much speed and he doesn’t have the hit tool to hit over .300.
25. Pete Alonso, 1B (30)
Arguably the top power bat in the game already, Pete Alonso set the MLB rookie record for home runs in a season and will likely be one of the top home run hitters each season moving forward. Alonso oozes raw power and might just lead the Majors in home runs and RBIs over the next five seasons combined heading into 2025. Even if he only hits .260 or so, add in 40-plus homers and 200-plus R+RBI and you have a top-25 type fantasy asset.
Bonus 5 Prospects That Could Be Included
Kristian Robinson, OF (24): Really wanted to include Kristian Robinson in my top-25 and he’s the main reason for this bonus section. Robinson has ridiculous power, plus athleticism, and has been improving as a pure hitter at the plate. The upside alone would put him in the top-25.
Royce Lewis, SS (25): The 2019 season was a down season for Royce Lewis, but he capped it off by destroying the Arizona Fall League. The skills are still here to develop into an early-round fantasy stud.
Royce Lewis Arizona Fall League Mix Tape.
— Eric Cross (@EricCross04) October 15, 2019
Forrest Whitley, SP (27): Ditto for Whitley. His 2019 season was a nightmare with performance and injury issues, but Whitley looked much better in the AFL and is still arguably the top pitching prospect in the game.
Andrew Vaughn, 1B (26): Has the tools to hit for an average north of .300 and 30-plus home runs as a middle of the order force.
Bobby Witt Jr., SS (24): If he can improve his hit tool, Witt Jr. should flourish as a 30/30 threat.
Trevor Story (32): This is probably the most shocking omission on the list. Even though he’s made strides as a hitter and has hit above .290 in each of the last two seasons, the strikeout rate is still concerning and Story’s home/road splits are prominent. Story hits free agency after the 2021 season and would be a much lesser fantasy asset outside of Coors Field. Just speculation, but more signs point to Story being outside the top-25 than inside it.
Bryce Harper (32): Go ahead and say it. You know you want to. BRYCE HARPER IS OVERRATED! No, he’s really not, and here’s why. Yes, at one point people projected Bryce Harper for Mike Trout levels of greatness, but he’s not that type of player. What Harper can bring to the table is strong across the board production that should still be stout in his early-30’s. What’s wrong with a .260+/30+/100+/100+/10 talent?
Aaron Judge (32): Obviously this is one of the best power hitters in the game, but I worry how his large frame will hold up as he enters his 30’s. He’s already missed considerable time in each of the last two seasons.
Mookie Betts (32): Listen, as a die-hard Red Sox fan, this put my stomach in knots to leave Mookie out. I still expect him to be a very good player in his age-32 season, but just not quite top-25 level in fantasy, especially if his speed continues to decrease.
Trea Turner (31): As I mentioned above, if Turner’s speed dwindles, his offensive game isn’t quite good enough to keep him in the top-25 in his age-31 season.
Carlos Correa (30): Trust me, the temptation to include Correa in my top-25 was very real. He has the offensive skills to be a top-25 talent in his age-30 season, but as we all know, the durability concerns are quite annoying at this point.
Nolan Arenado (33): No need to get too in-depth here. Arenado should still be a very good player in 2025, but I’m not sure that’s as a top-25 fantasy asset.
Honorable Mention (In No Particular Order)
C: Adley Rutschman, Joey Bart, Gary Sanchez.
1B/3B: Jose Ramirez, Freddie Freeman, Nolan Arenado, Anthony Rendon, Nolan Gorman, Kris Bryant, Yoan Moncada, Manny Machado, Matt Chapman, Spencer Torkelson, Austin Martin.
2B/SS: Jose Altuve, Trea Turner, C.J, Abrams, Carter Kieboom, Javier Baez, Ozzie Albies, Keston Hiura, Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Gavin Lux.
OF: Aaron Judge, Mookie Betts, Austin Meadows, Victor Robles, Andrew Benintendi, Kyle Tucker, Nick Senzel, Dylan Carlson.
SP: Mike Clevinger, Stephen Strasburg, Shane Bieber, Jacob deGrom, Casey Mize, Matt Manning, Nate Pearson, Luis Patino, Jesus Luzardo, Spencer Howard, Jack Flaherty, Shohei Ohtani, Luis Castillo, Chris Paddack, Luis Severino.
Media Credit: MLB Pipeline, Bleacher Report MLB, Lance Brozdowski, Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire, Boston Red Sox.
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