Major League Baseball

Ranking MLB's offenses, from the Los Angeles Dodgers to the Pittsburgh Pirates

March 4

By Ben Verlander
FOX Sports MLB Analyst

Spring training has begun, and that means it's time once again to attempt to answer that age-old question: Who's No. 1?

There's plenty to debate, so as we get ready for Opening Day, Ben Verlander will be ranking MLB’s offenses, stadiums, uniforms and teams overall.

We start with offense. Here’s the breakdown of everything on offer this baseball season, from the lineups to be feared to the squads in need of help.

1. Los Angeles Dodgers

2020 finish: 43-17, first in NL West, won World Series
Heart of the order: Mookie Betts, Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner

Ben’s take: They’re the champs. And with a full season of Mookie/Bellinger/Turner ahead, I expect this to be one of the best offenses in the history of the game. World Series MVP Corey Seager is still holding it down at shortstop. There is no slowing down this lineup.

2. New York Yankees

2020 finish: 33-27, second in AL East, lost in ALDS
Heart of the order: DJ LeMahieu, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton

Ben’s take: There is no let-up in this lineup. Health is a big concern here, but if — and that’s a big if — they can stay healthy, the Yankees are the scariest team in the American League. Luke Voit and Gleyber Torres add so much depth to this lineup, and if Gary Sanchez can get back on track, watch out. 

3. Atlanta Braves

2020 finish: 35-25, first in NL East, lost in NLCS
Heart of the order: Ronald Acuna Jr, Freddie Freeman, Marcell Ozuna

Ben’s take: The Braves feature one of the most exciting offenses in baseball, and the re-signing of Ozuna solidifies them at No. 3 for me. This squad has the perfect mixture of young studs and old vets to show them the way. At just 23 years old, Acuna will only continue to improve, and that’s scary for the rest of the sport. Ozzie Albies is emerging as one of the great second basemen in baseball, and Austin Riley is the wild card in this lineup who could take the offense to a whole new level. 

4. Chicago White Sox

2020 finish: 35-25, third in AL Central, lost in AL wild card
Heart of the order: Tim Anderson, Luis Robert, Jose Abreu

Ben’s take: This lineup is loaded from top to bottom. Robert will take the world by storm this season, already garnering Mike Trout comparisons and being called a "6-tool athlete" by Frank Thomas. The reigning AL MVP, Abreu holds it down in the middle of the lineup. And my pick for AL ROY, Nick Madrigal, who hit .340 in 103 at-bats last year, is set for his first full season.

5. San Diego Padres

2020 finish: 37-23, second in NL West, lost in NLDS
Heart of the order: Fernando Tatis Jr., Eric Hosmer, Manny Machado

Ben’s take: What’s not to love about this team? There's the new mega-deal for the emerging face of MLB, Tatis, along with Machado, who finished third in NL MVP voting last year. This lineup features one of the best offensive duos in all of baseball, and surrounding those two with guys such as Hosmer and Tommy Pham makes them even more dangerous.

6. Minnesota Twins

2020 finish: 36-24, first in AL Central, lost in AL wild card
Heart of the order: Max Kepler, Josh Donaldson, Nelson Cruz

Ben’s take: This team destroys baseballs. If you like the long ball, this is the team for you. The Twins had one of the best offenses the past few seasons, though a few pieces that added depth to this lineup have moved on. Still, this offense promises to bring the rain. Byron Buxton continues to emerge as more than just a speed threat, and Miguel Sano adds extra thump to an already dangerous lineup.

7. Toronto Blue Jays

2020 finish: 32-28, third in AL East, lost in AL wild card
Heart of the order: George Springer, Marcus Semien, Bo Bichette

Ben’s take: The Blue Jays' core is very young, but heading into this season, they now all have experience. Adding pieces such as Springer and Semien add not only valuable veteran experience but also two great players who make this team ready to compete. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is heading into his third season at only 21 years old, and if he continues to improve and turn into the player everyone expects, this lineup could easily finish higher than seventh.

8. Houston Astros

2020 finish: 29-31, third in AL West, lost in ALCS
Heart of order: Jose Altuve, Michael Brantley, Alex Bregman

Ben’s take: The loss of George Springer hurts. But with Carlos Correa at shortstop and the return of the 2019 AL Rookie of the Year, Yordan Alvarez, this lineup is still very good. If Kyle Tucker can put together a similar year to what he did last season, this lineup will have the depth it needs.

9. New York Mets

2020 finish: 26-34, fifth in NL East
Heart of the order: Jeff McNeil, Francisco Lindor, Pete Alonso

Ben’s take: Yes, the Mets have cracked the top 10 offenses in baseball! With the additions of arguably the best shortstop in baseball, Lindor, as well as James McCann behind the plate, this lineup is poised for a good season. Dominic Smith and Michael Conforto are two young, left-handed bats that continue to get better and better. 

10. Los Angeles Angels

2020 finish: 26-34, fourth in AL West
Heart of the order: Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout, Anthony Rendon

Ben’s take: I couldn’t not put this team in the top 10. Ohtani/Trout/Rendon offer one of the most feared middles of a lineup in all of baseball. This offense is good. David Fletcher is a great complimentary piece to these three and needs to become a household name. Now add some pitching for Trout, please.

11. Philadelphia Phillies

2020 finish: 28-32, third in NL East
Heart of the order: Bryce Harper, JT Realmuto, Rhys Hoskins

Ben’s take: This offense is really good. With the re-signing of Sir Didi Gregorius and the continued growth of star-in-the-making Alec Bohm, this lineup has the potential to be a top-10 offense. 

12. St. Louis Cardinals

2020 finish: 30-28, second in NL Central, lost in NL wild card
Heart of the order: Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, Dylan Carlson

Ben’s take: It isn't often that you get to add a piece such as Arenado to your lineup. And it’s really not often that a team pays you to take him. I digress, but nevertheless, he is in St. Louis, and he and Goldschmidt will hold down the middle of the lineup. Carlson is a wild card that the Cards need to have a good year. But all signs point to him being a terrific young ballplayer.

13. Boston Red Sox

2020 finish: 24-36, fifth in AL East
Heart of the order: Xander Bogaerts, JD Martinez, Rafael Devers

Ben’s take: Those guys make this a lineup that isn’t fun to face. Alex Verdugo is a great addition, but this team just lacks the depth to be a dominant offense. 

14. Tampa Bay Rays

2020 finish: 40-20, first in AL East, lost World Series
Heart of the order: Austin Meadows, Brandon Lowe, Randy Arozarena

Ben’s take: The AL champs return with the same lineup. I'm excited to see the legend himself, Arozarena, get a full season under his belt. Will he be just a playoff phenom? Or will he emerge as an elite player in this game?

15. Washington Nationals

2020 finish: 26-34, fourth in NL East
Heart of the order: Trae Turner, Juan SotoJosh Bell

Ben’s take: This is not the deepest lineup, but Turner is one of the best leadoff hitters in the league, and Soto is certainly in the discussion for the best hitter in baseball. There are a lot of questions in this lineup, though it has potential to be much better if Bell and Kyle Schwarber can perform as we’ve seen them do in the past.

16. Chicago Cubs

2020 finish: 34-26, first in NL Central, lost in NL wild card
Heart of the order: Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez

Ben’s take: There's a lot of uncertainty involving the Chicago Cubs. But for now, they have Bryant, and they have a pretty good lineup. The addition of Joc Pederson fills the void left by Schwarber quite nicely. 

17. Milwaukee Brewers

2020 finish: 29-31, fourth in NL Central, lost in NL wild card
Heart of the order: Kolten Wong, Lorenzo Cain, Christian Yelich

Ben’s take: Yelich. Yelich is why the Brewers are here. I also really like Keston Hiura, who is seemingly moving to first base this season with the addition of Wong. 

18. Cleveland Indians

2020 finish: 35-25, second in AL Central, lost in AL wild card
Heart of the order: Jose Ramirez, Eddie Rosario, Franmil Reyes

Ben’s take: The departure of Lindor hurts … a lot. Rosario was a nice boost to this outfield, where an addition was desperately needed.

19. Cincinnati Reds

2020 finish: 31-29, third in NL Central, lost in NL wild card
Heart of the order: Nick Castellanos, Joey Votto, Eugenio Suarez

Ben’s take: The Reds are another team that confuses me. What direction are they trying to go? I don’t know. But their lineup isn’t bad. Castellanos rakes, and Suarez could very well lead the league in homers. Votto is a much better hitter than he showed in last year’s shortened season, and I expect him to bounce back.

20. Oakland Athletics

2020 finish: 36-24, first in AL West, lost in ALDS
Heart of the order: Ramon Laureano, Matt Chapman, Matt Olson

Ben’s take: The A’s always seem to fly under the radar all season. Then, next thing you know, they’re in the playoffs. That said, this is not the best lineup on paper, and the loss of Semien really hurts.

21. Kansas City Royals

2020 finish: 26-34, fourth in AL Central
Heart of the order: Whit Merrifield, Andrew Benintendi, Jorge Soler

Ben’s take: Hear me out here. This lineup has vastly improved. The Royals added Benintendi, Michael A. Taylor and Carlos Santana to go with Merrifield and Soler. Not bad! 

22. Arizona Diamondbacks

2020 finish: 25-35, fifth in NL West
Heart of the order: Ketel Marte, Christian Walker, David Peralta

Ben’s take: This team is certainly not able to compete in the NL West with the Dodgers and Padres ahead of them, but the D-backs have some guys in the lineup who can rake.

23. Colorado Rockies

2020 finish: 26-34, fourth in NL West
Heart of the order: Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon, Ryan McMahon

Ben’s take: With Story and Blackmon in the lineup, the Rockies still have some talent, but what in the world are they doing with this team? If I’m a Rockies fan, I’m not happy. At all. 

24. Texas Rangers

2020 finish: 22-38, fifth in AL West
Heart of the order: Leody Taveras, Nate Lowe, Joey Gallo

Ben’s take: Gallo is fun to watch and can hit the ball a long way. David Dahl is a nice addition to this lineup but not enough of one for me to consider this a good offense.

25. Miami Marlins

2020 finish: 31-29, second in NL East, lost in NLDS
Heart of the order: Corey Dickerson, Starling Marte, Jesus Aguilar

Ben’s take: It was a fun story last season, with the Marlins making the playoffs, but they just don’t have the firepower in this lineup to compete in what seems to be the best division in baseball.

26. Seattle Mariners

2020 finish: 27-33, third in AL West
Heart of the order: Kyle Lewis, Kyle Seager, Mitch Haniger

Ben’s take: A lot of good, young talent is in this lineup and still on the way (unless the organization manipulates service time). This team is not ready to compete, but you can see it coming together. Jarred Kelenic is close to cracking the big-league roster and is one of the best prospects in all of baseball. Also, I'm excited to watch the continued growth of Lewis.

27. Detroit Tigers

2020 finish: 23-35, fifth in AL Central
Heart of the order: Jonathan Schoop, Miguel Cabrera, Jeimer Candelario

Ben’s take: This is a lineup full of veteran players past their primes. There isn't much to look forward to here. But the starting rotation, on the other hand ...

28. Baltimore Orioles

2020 finish: 25-35, fourth in AL East
Heart of the order: Anthony Santander, Trey Mancini, Ryan Mountcastle

Ben’s take: Mancini is back! He's the best story in all of baseball this year. Also, there’s the 24-year-old Mountcastle. He is going to be very good, and he has a great name. 

29. San Francisco Giants

2020 finish: 29-31, third in NL West
Heart of the order: Tommy LaStella, Mike Yastrzemski, Buster Posey

Ben’s take: Posey is back after opting out last season, but he is well past his prime. Yastrzemski continues to show promise, but this is just not a competitive lineup. 

30. Pittsburgh Pirates

2020 finish: 19-41, fifth in NL Central
Heart of the order: Adam Frazier, Ke’Bryan Hayes, Colin Moran

Ben’s take: Hayes. That’s the one bright spot. He hit .376 in his first 85 big-league at-bats last year. I'm excited to see what he can do in his official rookie season.

Check back for the rest of Ben's MLB rankings over the next few weeks!

Ben Verlander, who spent five years in the Detroit Tigers organization, is a baseball analyst for FOX Sports. Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, Verlander was an All-American at Old Dominion University before he joined his brother, Justin, in Detroit as a 14th-round pick of the Tigers in 2013. Follow him on Twitter @Verly32.


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