The best bats in the National League so far this season have slowed up a bit lately, but still have opposing pitchers working around them. Matt Kemp and Prince Fielder are not hitting long balls every game like they were a week ago, but they still have respect at the plate. Creeping up are a few new players who would like to steal the top spot in the NL as the season wears on into the summer. These are the best bats in the National League as on June 19th.
1) Matt Kemp – LAD (Last Week: 2)
Matt Kemp has been hitting a ton all month long. Although his power has declined over the past week, he has still managed to hit .400 for the month of June, an impressive feat. His OPS for the month stands at an outstanding 1.398, and his on-base percentage is hovering just over .500. The Dodgers have struggled this month, but not because of Kemp.
2) Prince Fielder – MIL (LW: 1)
Quickly becoming the one of the most feared bats in the game once again, Prince Fielder has been on a home run tear in June. His home run against Boston gave him 9 for the month, and brought his season total to 20, which is tied for the best in the league with Matt Kemp. If Fielder keeps this up, he could have himself a 50 home run season.
3) Ryan Braun – MIL (LW: 5)
Not to be forgotten in the Milwaukee lineup is Ryan Braun. While he certainly has not played as well as Fielder, he has certainly shown his value. He has hit .304 in June, and is currently on a respectable 12-game hitting streak for the Brew crew, who have had a winning June so far. Keep Braun in active in your Fantasy Baseball League, because you never know when he will heat up.
4) Jose Reyes – NYM (LW: 4)
While he may not leave the yard all that often, with only 3 home runs, Jose Reyes has been a player no pitcher wants to see. He is a nuisance on the base paths, and can turn any inning into an ugly one for the defense with his speed and power to every gap in the field. Not surprisingly, Reyes is tied for the league lead in runs, and is second in stolen bases with 26.
5) Joey Votto – CIN (LW: 3)
While he does not put up the MVP numbers he had last season, Votto remains a solid bat in the Red’s lineup, hitting .318 this month and .327 this year. His power has declined, with only 3 home runs and 13 RBIs in June, and that may be reason for some concern. If Fielder or Pujols is available ahead of Votto, they would be the better option in a Fantasy Baseball League.
6) Albert Pujols – STL (LW: 8)
Albert Pujols was never a player opposing pitchers wanted to face, but at least he was manageable when he had his early season struggles. Now it looks as though the old Pujols is back. He has hit .317 this month, with 8 home runs and 14 RBIs. That RBI total may be down because the opposition does not want to see him with runners on base.
7) Justin Upton – ARI (LW: NR)
Upton has had a hot bat in June. His run production has left something to be desired, with only 9 RBIs this month, but his average of .391 this month cannot be ignored. He has hit safely in all but 4 games this month, and that includes 9 multi-hit games. Arizona has had a good run as of late, and Upton is a big contributor to that cause.
8) Lance Berkman – STL (LW: 6)
While his June batting average has taken a slide, Lance Berkman has still found a way to be productive through his power. He has tallied 6 homers and driven in 15 runs, a respectable mark in both categories despite his low average. His hitting has declined in recent months, however, but as long as he can produce some runs, he will remain in the Cardinal lineup.
9) Troy Tulowitzki – COL (LW: NR)
After a huge contract extension to stay in Colorado, Troy Tulowitzki has proven he is worth the money that the Rockies are shelling out. He has hit 13 home runs this season, and has driven in an impressive 46 runs. But he has still only hit .276, which is a little lower than desired for any Coors Field player. Tulowitzki has always been productive, however.
10) Brian McCann – ATL (LW: NR)
Trying to get into his 6th consecutive All-Star game is Brian McCann, and for the first time in those selections, he may get the starting job. McCann has been one of the most consistent bats in the game the past few years, and this season is no different. McCann has hovered around .300 all year, and has hit 11 home runs. With Buster Posey out, McCann is the clear front runner for the NL’s catching spot.
Tags: 2011 All Star Game, 2011 fantasy baseball, 2011 MLB All Star Game, Albert Pujols, Brian McCann, fantasy baseball power rankings, joey votto, jose reyes, justin upton, Lance Berkman, Matt Kemp, National League, NL Power Rankings, prince fielder, ryan braun