Michael Brantley (Cleveland Indians)
Batting Average: .327
Home Runs: 20
Runs Batted In: 97
Stolen Bases: 23
Offensive WAR: 7.2
Defensive WAR: -.6
Brantley gets to No. 1 on this list because of the offensive year he had last year. He was the best offensive left fielder of the five. He’s a dual threat at the plate and on the bases. I don’t think he’s a 30/30 guy, but he could become a regular 20/20 performer year-in and year-out. Brantley was also third in the MVP last year, won the Silver Slugger and made his first All Star game.
The Indians left fielder posted the best Offensive WAR’s of the players on this list. He doubled his home run total and improved his batting average by 40 points, but it’s something he has the talent to sustain. Surprisingly he posted a negative WAR on defense as one would expect that someone with his speed should be able to maintain a positive, but I don’t think the Indians will complain that much.
If Brantley can post similar numbers this year he will be among the discussion of who is the best player in the division. I expect some regression, mainly in the batting average but he should still be the best left fielder in the division.