The Rays’ Blake Snell, Tommy Pham and Charlie Morton are ranked among Sports Illustrated’s top 100 MLB Players of 2019.
A committee of eight SI experts ranked players using a weighted three-year WAR (wins above replacement) formula. The players on the list are ones the magazine believes to be the best in the game right now.
Snell, who won the American League Cy Young award last season after going 21-5 with a 1.89 earned-run average, is ranked No. 47.
At least one committee member thinks he should be higher.
“Snell is criminally underrated at No. 47," Stephanie Apstein writes. “Expect him to spend 2019 proving that.”
Outfielder Tommy Pham, who batted .343 with a .448 on-base percentage and .622 slugging percentage in 39 games with the Rays after being acquired from the Cardinals, is No. 59.
“If his actual statistics line up with his contact numbers, and he offers a full-season line like the one he had in two months in Tampa Bay" Jack Dickey writes, "he’ll threaten for the AL MVP. "
Pitcher Charlie Morton, signed to a two-year contract after two seasons with the Astros — helping them to a World Series championship in 2017 — is ranked 98th.
“Since he, in his words, ‘just tried to throw harder,’ he became a strikeout machine, postseason hero and one of the best pitchers in baseball,” Tristan Jung writes. "Regardless of whether you credit Astros player development or believe in his ability to stay healthy, the reality is his numbers aren’t indicating any slowdown even after his offseason move to the Rays.”
Not surprisingly, Angels outfielder Mike Trout is No. 1.
“For as long as he’s active and healthy,” Dickey writes, “Mike Trout is the king of kings.”
Tellingly, three players — No. 20 Bryce Harper, No. 81 Craig Kimbrel and No. 84 Dallas Keuchel — remain unsigned. Manny Machado, who on Tuesday signed a reported 10-year, $300-million contract with the Padres, is No. 13.