Oct 1, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Cincinnati Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips before the National League wild card playoff baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Brandon Phillips Not A Top 10 Second Baseman?


The MLB Network and their infinite wisdom released their Top 10 lists for the top second basemen “right now.” That is all well and good, a nice little list for the offseason to eat up some air time, I get it. What doesn’t make sense is the fact that Cincinnati Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips is not on the list.

The lists were comprised by one computer model that breaks players down statistically “The Shredder” and then three human voters. The human voters being MLB Network on air personalities Brain Kenny, Harold Reynolds and statistical guru Bill James.

Brandon Phillips was left off of two of the four lists.

The Shredder
1. Robinson Cano, Mariners
2. Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox
3. Ben Zobrist, Rays
4. Jason Kipnis, Indians
5. Chase Utley, Phillies
6. Ian Kinsler, Tigers
7. Howie Kendrick, Angels
8. Neil Walker, Pirates
9. Aaron Hill, Diamondbacks
10. Marco Scutaro, Giants

Bill James
1. Robinson Cano, Mariners
2.Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox
3. Ben Zobrist, Rays
4. Jason Kipnis, Indians
5. Chase Utley, Phillies
6. Brandon Phillips, Reds
7. Ian Kinsler, Tigers
8. Omar Infante, Royals
9. Jose Altuve, Astros
10. Howie Kendrick, Astros

Harold Reynolds
1. Robinson Cano, Mariners
2. Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox
3. Brandon Phillips, Reds
4. Jason Kipnis, Indians
5. Howie Kendrick, Angels
6. Chase Utley, Phillies
7. Ian Kinsler, Tigers
8. Marco Scutaro, Giants
9. Omar Infante, Royals
10. Neil Walker, Pirates

Brian Kenny
1. Robinson Cano, Mariners
2. Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox
3. Jason Kipnis, Indians
4. Chase Utley, Phillies
5. Aaron Hill, Diamondbacks
6. Ben Zobrist, Rays
7. Howie Kendrick, Angels
8. Ian Kinsler, Tigers
9. Neil Walker, Pirates
10. Omar Infante, Royals

Brian Kenny and “The Shredder” both left Phillips off their lists while Bill James and Harold Reynolds thought Phillips deserved a top ten spot at #6 and #3 respectively.

What doesn’t make sense is why Phillips was left off of Kenny’s and “The Shredders” list all together. Did they only taking batting statistics into account? If so then yeah they deserve the right to leave him off, but if you include defense Phillips is the best defensive second baseman in baseball hands down.

So what you’re saying Brian Kenny is that Howie Kendrick and Omar Infante are better second baseman than Phillips? That Aaron Hill and an ancient Chase Utley are better? You may be the face of the MLB Network, but you certainly haven’t been watching baseball.

Phillips offensive numbers have slumped over the last two seasons, that is a major problem everyone in Cincinnati knows that, the front office knows that. The defense though, that is a highlight reel night in and out. Not to mention he won a gold glove last season, something the other four NL players on that list can’t say.

Brandon Phillips has his flaws off the field and in the batter box at times but one thing is for certain, no one and I repeat no one plays better defense than that man.

Tags: Brandon Phillips Cincinnati Reds

  • bjerryberg

    Phillips is a stellar defensive player–maybe the best in the ‘ESPN highlight reel era’ and with over 100 RBIs last year–reports of his offensive demise are greatly exaggerated.

    Perhaps, Brian Kenny does not like Phillips’ public persona–or perhaps he only watches the AL–half that league’s 2Bers are on his list !!

  • DelvinPickford

    I find Brian Kenny to be a great boxing analyst. lol