As we go through the final week of the regular season, so the total points standings can look a lot more like the MVP standings at some positions. Center field is one of the deeper positions on the diamond in terms of fantasy production. Unlike the basic 5×5 leagues, total points encompasses just about everything a player does offensively both positively and negatively, so the results will mirror the MVP standings more accurately.

When we move into the offseason we will look at each position in much more detail, but for our purposes here we are simply doing a primer into total points and its implications. We have developed our own point system here, so it might vary depending on the platform you use. There is still some money to be won in daily fantasy baseball even if the standard fantasy season is nearly at a close. We will combine stolen bases, walks, and hit by pitches into a positive category and strikeouts, caught stealings, and grounded into double plays as a negative category. Statistics are accurate as of Tuesday September 26th.

Total Bases= 1 point each                           SO= -1 point each

Runs= 1 point each                                        CS= -1 point each

RBI= 1 point each                                           GIDP= -1 point each

Walks= 1 point each

SB= 1 point each

HBP= 1 point each


The Elite


TB Runs RBI + TP
Charlie Blackmon 375 134 97 85 -146 545
Mike Trout 240 88 67 119 -98 416
George Springer 277 106 80 75 -125 413
Andrew McCutchen 260 88 79 86 -127 386
Christian Yelich 260 95 79 96 -145 385
Ender Inciarte 268 92 57 69 -110 376

First, we should begin with what makes elite players elite and it is something unique to total points. The on base component (walks) can be seen in the positive category and that category separates the good from the great. Blackmon could be a dark horse MVP candidate. Naturally, many will question the validity of these numbers because half came in Coors Field, but getting close to 600 points is pretty darn impressive no matter where it happens.

Mike Trout coming close to 500 points after missing six weeks is even more impressive. Both he and Springer missed significant time, so they will be high draft picks next season and will look even better on a per game basis. While yearly players will not care about those considerations, DFS players obviously do.

Rank and File

TB Runs RBI + TP
Lorenzo Cain 253 85 49 82 -120 349
Adam Jones 278 82 73 36 -132 337
Chris Taylor 252 85 70 70 -148 329
Dexter Fowler 202 67 63 72 -108 296
Kevin Pillar 234 71 42 54 -111 290
Denard Span 203 69 43 51 -84 282
A.J. Pollock 191 68 47 58 -82 282

If there is any fascinating study it is the difference between great players and good players. Most of the players here are good players. Invariably, you can point to the differential between the positive and negative category. A quick comparison of Jones versus Trout is evidence enough of how that works. Of course, as guys like Cain become free agents it becomes interesting to see how they are viewed in the open market. By definition, most teams would do better with him than with their guy, but how much better and how much is that worth?

Of course, total points doesn’t include fielding and that has to be a consideration for teams as opposed to fantasy players. So, a player like Span is a definite fantasy option whereas his days in center field are likely numbered from a defensive perspective. Fowler is the one outlier on this list as he has always had a good ratio of positive versus negative output. Like in the past, he has struggled to remain healthy though.

The Rest

TB Runs RBI + TP
Billy Hamilton 189 84 38 100 -144 267
Odubel Herrera 230 64 52 42 -139 249
Jackie Bradley 191 58 62 64 -130 245
Jacoby Ellsbury 140 62 39 66 -71 236
Manuel Margot 198 53 39 54 -114 230
Byron Buxton 187 68 50 69 -146 228
Carlos Gomez 170 51 51 63 -134 201

Sometimes a player embodies a perspective more perfectly than any abstract explanation. Hamilton is the best case for total points I can think of. In a five category universe he gets overdrafted every time because of those steals. Here he is appropriately valued. The steals help in the positive category, but every other category drags him down into this group of fantasy backups.

The rest of the group have similar warts that prevent them from being overly productive. All of them have had flashes of brilliance and when those come at the end of the season like they have with Buxtom we might be tempted to read too much into that. Still, all of them have the same characteristics of simply missing something that would elevate them into a starter.

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