March 21, 2013; Goodyear, AZ, USA; Cueto throws in the first inning during a spring training game against the Oakland Athletics at Goodyear Ballpark. (Photo: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports)

Reds Place 17 in ESPN's Top 500

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A couple of days ago, ESPN completed its unveiling of their top 500. If you’ve not been following along at home, here’s how the 500 were derived.

From ESPN’s website

To compile the top 500, 34 ESPN experts, who were polled in the final two weeks of February, started with a list of more than 600 players. Using a 0-to-100 scale, they evaluated the players based only on how well they will perform in 2013. Players expected to miss 2013 with an injury, such as Chris Carpenter and Rafael Furcal, were not included.

A point to make here. If you read some of the comments for this on the WWL’s site, people are upset that Mike Trout is a top 10 player after only one season. ESPN notes that this listing/ranking is based on what the 34 feel the players will do in 2013 and not based on each player’s career. That said, I think for some player’s it might be little difficult to overlook their past “credentials”.

I will also add that lists of this type (or any other such as power rankings) hold absolutely no meaning other than those of conversation pieces and opinion. Nothing more. Don’t be rattled if you feel your favorite Red was rated too low, if he was rated.

So I stated that there are 17 Reds. Here’s that listing and where each ranked.

March 2, 2013; Glendale, AZ, USA; Votto at bat against the Chicago White Sox in the first inning during a spring training game at Camelback Ranch. (Photo: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports)

Cincinnati Rank
C Ryan Hanigan 293
1B Joey Votto 9
2B Brandon Phillips 72
3B Todd Frazier 248
SS Zack Cozart 334
OF Jay Bruce 55
OF Shin-Soo Choo 97
OF Ryan Ludwick 284
SP Johnny Cueto 41
SP Mat Latos 73
SP Homer Bailey 128
SP Bronson Arroyo 320
SP Mike Leake 408
RP Sean Marshall 192
RP Jonathan Broxton 250
RP J.J. Hoover 499
CL Aroldis Chapman 46

Mr. Hoover at #499 and the only other Reds reliever outside of the Nasty Boys 2.0 included. Surely, this is a sign, isn’t it?

Here’s how the rest of the NL Central teams fared.

Chicago Rank Milwaukee Rank Pittsburgh Rank St. Louis Rank
C     Lucroy 213 Martin 309 Molina 28
1B Rizzo 113 Hart 173 Jones 364 Craig 91
2B Barney 282 Weeks 171 Walker 222 Descalso 452
3B     A. Ramirez 111 Alvarez 211 Freese 83
SS Castro 61 Segura 410        
OF Soriano 194 Braun 5 McCutchen 12 Holliday 43
OF DeJesus 380 Gomez 219 Marte 357 Beltran 72
OF Hairston 411 Aoki 244 Tabata 481 Jay 186
OF Schierholtz 474     Snider 495 Tavares 391
SP Samardzija 124 Gallardo 60 Burnett 191 Wainwright 45
SP Garza 154 Lohse 151 McDonald 257 Lynn 166
SP E. Jackson 178 Fiers 360 Rodriguez 264 Garcia 215
SP S. Baker 387 Estrada 375 Liriano 439 Westbrook 301
SP Villanueva 388 Peralta 450 Karstens 489 Miller 313
SP Feldman 435 Narveson 465 Cole 500    
SP T. Wood 473            
RP Fujikawa 383 Gorzelanny 498 Melancon 421 Rosenthal 232
RP             Boggs 315
RP             Mujica 365
RP             Rzepczynski 413
RP             Kelly 448
CL Marmol 296 Axford 228 Grilli 267 Motte 88

Yesterday, I did say the Cubs have a lot of arms. Apparently, so do the Redbirds.

So…

If you take the highest ranked at each position for the NL Central and create a “team”, here”s what you get…

POS Player Team Rank
C Molina STL 28
1B Votto CIN 9
2B Phillips CIN 72
3B Freese STL 83
SS Castro CHC 61
LF Braun MIL 5
CF McCutchen PIT 12
RF Bruce CIN 55
SP Cueto CIN 41
SP Wainwright STL 45
SP Gallardo MIL 60
SP Latos CIN 73
SP Samardzija CHC 124
RP Marshall CIN 192
CL Chapman CIN 46

The breakdown…

CHC: 2
CIN: 7
MIL: 2
PIT: 1
STL: 3

Make of it what you will.

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