Though Miguel Cabrera has struggled with injuries over the past few seasons with the Detroit Tigers, there is no doubt that he is one of the best players of the 2010s.
In a piece recently published by ‘The Athletic,’ Jayson Stark revealed his ‘Five best players of the 2010s,’ and as you can see below, Miggy checked in at No. 4, behind Mike Trout, Joey Votto, and Adrian Beltre.
The five best players of the 2010s
1. Mike Trout — You were expecting maybe Rusney Castillo? Trout just crushed this field in pretty much every category that didn’t involve counting — and even a few categories that did. But the biggest headline was this: According to Baseball Reference, his 72.5 Wins Above Replacement in the ’10s meant he was worth 18.3 more wins than any other position player in the sport, despite the fact he essentially gave everyone else a two-year head start! And there has never — we said never — been any player who blew out the field in WAR by that crazy a margin in any — we said any — decade. The old record was 16.3, and that was set by Honus Wagner over 100 years ago (1900-09). So … Mike Trout. He’s pretty good.
2. Joey Votto — Only two players in the sport had a .300/.400/.500 slash line in the ’10s. One was Trout. The other was Votto (.306/.428/.516). This guy has been way too underappreciated. More on him later.
3. Adrián Beltré — There were just four players who were worth at least 50 wins in the ’10s, according to the Baseball Reference WAR computations. Beltré was one of them even though he didn’t play a game in 2019. Did you know that only one player in baseball finished in the top 10 on the offensive and defensive WAR leaderboards for this decade? Yep, that was Adrián Beltré.
4. Miguel Cabrera — The Miggy of 2010-16 was the greatest offensive force in the game. Unfortunately, the last three seasons also count, so No. 4 on this list will have to cut it. But what does it tell us that Cabrera was a veritable shadow of his old self in those three years and still had the highest batting average (.317) of any player in the ’10s? He also landed in the top five in OBP and slugging — and only one other hitter kept him company in that top five of all the slash-line categories: Trout.
5. Robinson Canó — The first four on this list were easy. The fifth was a free-for-all, with Canó, Josh Donaldson, Nolan Arenado, Buster Posey and Paul Goldschmidt the best of a great group. I could have deducted points for Canó’s PED suspension. But there’s no character-and-integrity clause in the Best of the 2010s competition. So let’s recognize how good the Robbie Canó of yesteryear was. Nobody got more hits in the ’10s than Canó (1,695). Only Trout had more six-win seasons (five) or seven-win seasons (four), according to bWAR. And guess who led all position players not named Mike Trout in WAR in this decade? That would be — yessir — Robinson Canó (54.2).
Nation, do you agree with Jayson Stark or should Miggy be higher or lower on this list?