TodayBreak

Mike Trout is an obvious choice at No. 1, and a reigning MVP is second

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(Updated June 1, 2014)

Mike Trout is really, really good. (How's that for analysis?)

I think he's $300 million good.

Well, Trout "settled" for six years and $144.5 million in late March. As a bonus, he gets the No. 1 spot in our rankings of center fielders. (That's guaranteed to go on his Wikipedia page.)

Our rankings of the top center fielders in MLB:

1. Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels
  • Age: 22
  • 2014 salary: $1 million


  • Skinny: In 2012 and '13, his first two full seasons in the big leagues, Trout batted .326 and .323 with per-season averages of 29 homers, 90 RBI, 41 stolen bases and 119 runs scored. In the process, he earned a pair of All-Star selections, two Silver Sluggers, the 2012 American League Rookie of the Year and back-to-back runner-up finishes in the AL MVP race. Not a bad start.

2. Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates
  • Age: 27
  • 2014 salary: $7.25 million
  • Skinny: The 2013 National League MVP has racked up three consecutive All-Star selections and two Silver Slugger awards in a row. McCutchen, a Gold Glover in 2012, has batted .327 and .317 the last two seasons. In that span, he's averaged 26 homers, 90 RBI, 24 steals and 102 runs scored per year.

3. Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers
  • Age: 28
  • 2014 salary: $7 million
  • Skinny: In his first five big-league seasons, Gomez hit a total of 25 homers. In the last two years, he's had a combined 44 homers and 78 steals. In 2013, he was fantastic, batting .284 with an .843 OPS, 24 homers and a career-high 40 steals. Gomez was a Gold Glover last year, and he got off to a torrid start in 2014 (.323 with 11 homers, 31 RBI, 10 steals, 36 runs and a .985 OPS in his first 49 games).



    4. Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles
    • Age: 28
    • 2014 salary: $13 million
    • Skinny: He was a 2013 Silver Slugger and has earned back-to-back All-Star and Gold Glove selections. In that span (2012 and '13), Jones has per-season norms of 33 homers, 95 RBI and 102 runs.

    5. Jacoby Ellsbury, New York Yankees
    • Age: 30
    • 2014 salary: $21.1 million
    • Skinny: He cashed in last offseason, landing a seven-year, $153 million contract with the Yankees, despite playing 74 and 134 games the last two seasons. In 2011, Ellsbury hit 32 homers, drove in 105 runs and had a .928 OPS. Those power numbers seem to be outliers for a player who had nine homers, 53 RBI and a .781 OPS last season. Ellsbury swiped an MLB-best 52 bases in 2013.

    6. Coco Crisp, Oakland Athletics
    • Age: 34
    • 2014 salary: $7.5 million
    • Skinny: This is where the list starts to drop in value. Crisp has averaged 35 steals per season since 2010, and last year he had career highs in runs (93) and homers (22).

    7. Charlie Blackmon, Colorado Rockies
    • Age: 27
    • 2014 salary: $501,000
    • Skinny: All Blackmon does is hit. In 82 games last season, he batted .309 with an .803 OPS. He picked up where he left off in the first 53 contests of 2014, batting .313 with an .860 OPS, nine homers, 33 RBI and nine steals. He hit very well in the minor leagues, too (.309 with an .843 OPS).

    8. Desmond Jenning, Tampa Bay Rays
    • Age: 27
    • 2014 salary: $517,000
    • Skinny: Jennings has never really lived up to the expectations many of us had for him after he had 10 homers, 20 steals, 44 runs and an .805 OPS in 247 at-bats as a rookie in 2011. The next two years, Jennings averaged 84 runs, 14 homers, 50 RBI and 26 steals. In that stretch he batted only .246 and .252, with an OPS of .702 and .748, respectively. He produced similar numbers in his first 50 games of 2014 (.234 with a .709 OPS).

    9. Austin Jackson, Detroit Tigers
    • Age: 27
    • 2014 salary: $6 million
    • Skinny: The up-and-down Jackson batted .249, .300 and .272 the last three seasons, with an OPS of .690, .856 and .754, respectively. In that span, he averaged 13 homers, 53 RBI, 14 steals and 97 runs per year.

    10. Lorenzo Cain, Kansas City Royals
    • Age: 28
    • 2014 salary: $546,000
    • Skinny: Cain earned the last spot practically by default. He had four homers, 46 RBI and 14 steals in 2013, his first full season. He had an impressive start to his 2014 campaign, batting .339 with an .828 OPS in his first 33 games.

    Honorable mention

    ??Click here for all of our 2014 player rankings.

    2014 rankings by position
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