Assessing the Performance of MLB’s Top 10 Players So Far

There’s nothing more American than watching the first two weeks of the MLB season play out and arriving at hasty and oversimplified conclusions. Thank you internet. But that’s the day and age we live in, and who am I to deviate from that which is generally accepted? After all, I am a true, red-blooded American through and through.

Entering the season, if you were to survey a representative sample of baseball fans everywhere, about who the league’s best players are, you would probably come up with a list that looks something like this:

  1. Clayton Kershaw
  2. Mike Trout
  3. Felix Hernandez
  4. Giancarlo Stanton
  5. Chris Sale
  6. Andrew McCutchen
  7. Miguel Cabrera
  8. Buster Posey
  9. Jose Abreu
  10. Robinson Cano

It’s hard to dispute any of those players’ place on that list, but if you were to make a similar list of the top-10 best players so far this season, not one of them would make the cut. Whether that’s a testament to some of the unexpected stars that have emerged over the first few weeks, or if it is simply a product of it being so early in the season, it is a highly surprising state of affairs nonetheless.

Through two weeks, each one of these players fits squarely into one of four categories I have identified; struggling, laboring, persevering, or performing. Let’s take a look at each category, and at each player within, to better understand what’s going on.

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