MLB Network continued their annual top 10 rankings for every position in baseball and ranked shortstops this past weekend.
Despite winning the batting title in 2019, Tim Anderson was not on the list. Over 123 games, Anderson hit .335/.357/.508 with 18 home runs, 56 RBI, 17 stolen bases, and a 130 wRC+
On the defensive side, Anderson had -9 DRS and a -9.1 UZR. Overall, the 26-year-old had a 3.5 fWAR.
While shortstop has become a premium position in the game, it’s hard to see how Anderson didn’t make the list after the career year he had.
In 21 more games, Torres actually had a 3.6 fWAR which is only a slight increase from Anderson’s in 2019. Polanco and DeJong definitely could have also been replaced by Anderson on the list.
To be fair, it’s likely Anderson’s struggles in the field are what ultimately led to his absence from the list as many of these other options are strong defenders.
That being said, somehow Baez was ranked the third-best shortstop and, while he is a very good player, arguably is not that much better than Anderson. In fact, the shortstop from the South Side of Chicago had a higher wRC+ than Baez (114) this past season.
Heck, Marcus Semien was an MVP candidate in 2019 and ranked behind Baez on the list.
If Anderson improves his defense, this could quickly change in 2020 and beyond.
The fact that Anderson had the best season of his career in 2019 as he enters his prime is an extremely good sign and he, hopefully, will only get better from here.
Whether or not MLB Network recognizes it or not, the White Sox have a top-tier shortstop and there’s a lot to look forward to with Tim Anderson in the future.