Hit or Miss

By Jacqui McLean and Lauren Marino 

Sports are a critical building block of American society. One of the most renowned American sports is baseball. While the game itself is enjoyable, many individuals prefer certain teams or specific players. Often fanatics root for local teams, but fan favorite players aren’t always proximate to their fanbase. Although the criteria for player selection varies, we have ranked some of the most well known baseball athletes for their athletic ability, personality, looks, and community contribution. 

  1. Shohei Ohtani (10/10)

Shohei Ohtani has established a massive fan base for his incredible performance for the Angels these past couple years. Not only does Ohtani dominate on the mound, but he also excels in the box; an atypical trait of a major league pitcher. As a 2021 MVP, many people claim that he is the best two-way player ever. As a Japanese player, Ohtani has greatly expanded the MLB fan base across the world to Japan. He is quite literally “the man.”

  1. Juan Soto (9/10)

Juan Soto is one of the MLB’s premier power hitters. In seasons that Soto has played in 100 or more games, he has averaged nearly 28 home runs per year. Even while having a down year for his standards, Soto was considered to be the best player on this year’s trade market. He was recently sent from the Washington Nationals to the San Diego Padres in a major sweepstakes trade. The trade involved sending 5 high end prospects as well as established major leaguer Luke Voit in exchange for only Soto and one other player. 

  1. Mookie Betts (10/10)

Mookie Betts really can do it all on the diamond. While being one of the MLB’s most prolific all around hitters, he is also arguably the best defensive player in the entire league at his position. There is no reason to even look at Betts’ stats if you have already seen his accolades and awards. In a 9 year MLB career Betts has been an All Star 6 times, took home 5 consecutive gold gloves, and finished top 8 in MVP voting each of those same five seasons, including his 2018 campaign in which he won the award. Along with all these individual awards, Mookie’s career has been full of playing for winning teams, two of which have won World Series championships.

4. Dansby Swanson (9/10)

    Dansby Swanson has been named one of MLB’s Best All Around shortstops. He ranks second among all NL shortstops, coming ahead of Trea Turner and Francisco Lindor. Swanson is not only an outstanding shortstop, but he also impresses on the offensive side of the game. Swanson is batting at a percentage of 0.287, however these numbers do not show his true power.  Swanson has over 15 homers just this past season significantly assisting the Braves as an organization. With Swansons help from both sides of the field he deserves the title 

5. Joc Pederson (7.5/10)

    Joc Pederson is one of the most well known names in Major League Baseball. He gained his fame from being on the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Atlanta Braves who won the world series in 2021. Joc has won many world series titles with many different teams, each team he continues to contribute his talent to achieve the World Series title. Every game Joc surprises fans by consistently performing well each game. He delivers offensively by leading the San Francisco Giants, who are currently within, in home runs with a grand total of 20. He saves the giants defensively by robbing home runs and making unbelievable plays in the outfield with the help from his teammates. Anywhere Joc plays he never disappoints the team or the fans because of the incredible player he is. 

6. Freddie Freeman (10/10)

    Freddie Freeman is a well rounded, incredible baseball player. He is not only loved by all of baseball because of his great personality, but because of his performance on the baseball field. Freeman spent all of his major league career with the Atlanta Braves, but recently got traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers at the end of the 2021 season. His 2022 stats highlights include impressive numbers such as his batting average .325 with a total of 16 home runs on the season. Offensively, Freeman is a huge attribute to the Dodgers being granted the Silver Slugger Award in 2019, 2020, and 2021. His other accomplishments include being a 2018 golden glove winner and a 2020 national league MVP. Freeman constantly provides for the Dodgers with his jaw dropping performances from both offense and defense.