Predicting The Top 15 Hitters For The 2013 MLB Season
Predicting Top 15 Hitters For 2013 Season
How can one predict a top hitter? It’s a legitimate question that one has to ask before putting together a list of top hitters. First of all what actually constitutes a top hitter? Is a top hitter one who crushes home runs? One who only drives in runs? One who strikes fear into opposing pitchers? Tough questions.
All of those questions are valid. When I put my predictions together I decided to look at average and top players on their own teams. I don’t think that just hitting home runs make a top hitter. An example of this would be a player like Adam Dunn.
In 2012 Dunn hit 41 home runs and drove in 96 runs. Dunn also drew 105 walks. In my opinion that makes Dunn a hitter who strikes fear into opposing pitchers but not a top hitter. A pitcher will be afraid to leave anything over the plate and when Dunn is hot he hits it but when he isn’t he strikes out. His average was .204 and he struck out 222 times.
Now, take a player like Buster Posey. Posey only hit 24 home runs however he brought a lot of value to the San Francisco Giants. He drove in 103 runs and drew 69 walks but only struck out 96 times. Posey is still a hitter who strikes fear into most pitchers. Yet he also hits consistently and is considered a top hitter in the MLB.
For the record I did leave off Bryce Harper on the list and it was a hard choice. I still think that Harper is a great player, and a great talent but I don’t see him as a top hitter in 2013. He only hit .270 which is great for a rookie but not as a top hitter in the league. I just wanted to clarify that Harper is a great player. Perhaps he will be a top hitter in 2014.
It is still hard to predict the top 15 hitters for 2013 because anything could happen to these players in the off season or even during the season. There are always surprises when it comes to top hitters that writers can’t always predict.
With that being said, let’s take a look at my predictions for the top 15 hitters in 2013.
Let me know what you think, leave a comment and follow me on Twitter @EvanCrum1319
I have talked about Posey already. He is a great player and a great leader with the Giants. Posey is a top hitter in the MLB. Posey hit .336, hit 24 home runs, drove in 103 runs and had an on base percentage of .408. Oh and like I said he only struck out 96 times. That is one of the reasons he won MVP in 2012 in the National League. He is at least in my book a top candidate for repeat MVP of the National League.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Cabrera is on this list. What hasn’t been said about Cabrera already? Triple Crown winner, MVP of the American League, the guy does it all. Cabrera has been a top hitter since he broke into the league. He is a career .318 hitter, has 321 home runs and has driven in 1123 runs. He strikes fear into opposing pitchers. He is one of the premier hitters in the MLB making him one of the top hitters in 2013.
Trout is another player who had a breakout year. There is always a risk that he will hit a sophomore slump. If he doesn’t slump which I don’t think he will, Trout will be a top hitter in 2013. Trout hit .326, hit 30 home runs, and drove in 83 runs. Trout also stole 49 bases. He did have a high strikeout total at 139. If Trout wants to be the best hitter in the MLB he has to see cut down on his swing. Even that is hard to fault him on. Without question one of the top hitters in 2013.
McCutchen is turning into a top hitter in the National League for the Pittsburgh Pirates. McCutchen hit .327, hit 31 home runs, drove in 96 runs and had an on base percentage of .400. He was also third in MVP voting for the National League. In 2012 he won the Silver Slugger award. McCutchen is an up and coming talent and another special player. I don’t see him stopping in 2013.
Beltre has always been considered a dangerous hitter. He was third in MVP voting in the American League in 2012. He hit .321 and only struck out 81 times. Career wise he is a .280 hitter with 346 home runs and 1215 runs batted in. Beltre seems to get better with age in 2010 he hit .321 and in 2011 he hit .296. Will 2013 be the year he gets the MVP as a top hitter?
Hamilton had what was considered for him an “off” year average wise. He only hit .284. Yet taking a look at his numbers in 2012 he didn’t’ have an off year. He drove in 128 runs and hit 43 home runs. Career wise Hamilton is a .304 hitter with 161 home runs. He will be a top hitter in 2013 whether it’s in the American League or National League.
Fielder has been a top hitter in the National League. Now he is a top hitter in the American League. In 2012 he hit .313, had 30 home runs and drove in 108 runs. I don’t think that 2013 will be any different.
Remember when Pujols started out slow in 2012? People were hitting the panic button and didn’t know what was going on. Well, Pujols was still a top hitter in 2012. He hit .285, drove in 105 runs and hit 30 home runs. I wonder what his numbers would have been if it wasn’t for his slow start. Pujols has been a threat his entire career. His career average is .325 in 12 years. A top hitter in 2013? I think so.
The New York Mets recently resigned Wright to an eight year $138 million contract. It’s a good thing they locked him up since Wright is one of the top hitters in the MLB. In 2012 Wright hit.306, had 21 home runs and drove in 93 runs. Wright is a career .301 hitter. He is the cornerstone for the Mets and will once again be a top hitter in 2013.
Cano is one of the best second baseman in the American League. He is also one of the best hitters. In 2012 he hit .313, hit 33 home runs and drove in 94 runs. Cano is a career .308 hitter. I see Cano repeating his success in 2013.
Butler still seems to be under most people’s radar. It’s probably because he plays for the Kansas City Royals. Butler is a top hitter. In 2012 he hit .313, drove in 107 runs, and hit 29 home runs as well. Butler is a career .300 hitter. I don’t think 2013 will be any different. I think that in 2013 Butler will finally get some attention other than with Royals fans and people in the AL Central.
In my book Konerko is still one of the top hitters in the MLB. If it wasn’t for his wrist injury in 2012 he would have hit above .300. Even with the injury to his wrist, Konerko still hit .298, had 21 home runs and drove in 75 runs. Konerko is a career .359 hitter with 422 home runs and 1336 runs batted in. He may be ending his career soon but he is still consistently one of the top hitters in the MLB.
Mauer is still a top hitter. In 2012 Mauer hit .319, drove in 85 runs, and had an on base percentage of .416 which was top in the American League. He isn’t much of a power hitter anymore since he only hit 10 home runs in 2012. Mauer is still a career .323 hitter with a career on base percentage of .404. Mauer is also a class act. He could go somewhere else and make more money but he stays with the Minnesota Twins. I see him as a top hitter in 2013.
Gonzalez played well in 2012. He hit .299, had 18 home runs, and drove in 108 runs. He is a career .294 hitter. Everywhere he has played he has been a top hitter with the exception of 2004 and 2005 when he just broke into the league. I know that Gonzalez will do it again 2013 and be one of the top hitters.
I didn’t even know who Stanton was until I was watching Baseball Tonight and saw one of his monster home runs. I started to pay attention then and I’m sure fans will start to notice him in 2013. In 2012 Stanton hit .290 had 37 home runs and drove in 86 runs. I don’t know if he will be a top hitter in 2013 with the Miami Marlins but wherever he lands he will make a team very happy.