Top 10 Designated Hitters

2012 Fantasy Baseball Player Rankings – Top 10 Designated Hitters and Utility Players

Top 10 DH and UTIL players for fantasy baseball

Designated Hitters – the hidden position in our 2012 fantasy baseball player rankings. We suggest having a DH position for a 10-man league, but for deeper leagues, drafting a DH can make for a longer, drawn-out draft. There are lots of talent in this list of top 10 designated hitters so make sure not to overlook this position.

Billy Butler, designated hitter for the Kansas City Royals, swinging at a pitch.

Photo credit: Keith Allison

1. Billy Butler, KC, .310 BA, 20 HR, 100 RBI – The Royals have a really good hitter in Butler who has been consistently good in his young career. He will be a mainstay in the heart of a Kansas City lineup that has plenty of potential.

2. Michael Young, TEX, .302 BA, 15 HR, 94 RBI – Young is usually eligible as both a first and third baseman, but will primarily be used as the designated hitter. He’s an ultra-talented hitter who uses the entire field.

3. David Ortiz, BOS, .286 BA, 25 HR, 90 RBI – ‘Big Papi’ had a fine 2011 with a .300 BA, 29 HR and 96 runs driven in which has rejuvenated the 36-year-old. His numbers will drop slightly this season, but owners can expect a very productive campaign.

4. Jesus Montero, SEA, .281 BA, 22 HR, 82 RBI – The Mariners traded for Montero this offseason because he can flat out hit. It will be interesting to see if he’s used much as a catcher which would just increase his fantasy value.

5. Edwin Encarnacion, TOR, .265 BA, 18 HR, 68 RBI – The 29-year-old is a career .260-hitter with decent power. Ecarnacion plays below-average in the field so the designated hitter role is likely.

6. Vladimir Guerrero, FA, .291, 14 HR, 70 RBI – The nine-time All Star is yet to be signed heading into Spring Training. Gerrero is still a very capable hitter and will produce if given the right opportunity, barring injury.

7. Hideki Matsui, FA, .268 BA, 16 HR, 69 RBI – Here is another unsigned hitter who still can contribute enough to warrant a roster spot somewhere. Matsui will find a home because he still has some pop and can come up with the clutch hit.

8. Adam Dunn, CWS, .218 BA, 20 HR, 74 RBI – Dunn was pretty awful last year posting a .159 batting average. At age 32, expect a better season in 2012 given his track record for hitting home runs and knocking in runs.

9. Johnny Damon, FA, .267 BA, 13 HR, 59 RBI – The 38-year-old veteran has a current streak of 14 consecutive seasons with at least 500 at-bats. That run is very much in question since he’s currently unsigned.

10. Magglio Ordonez, FA, .265 BA, 10 HR, 61 RBI – Ordonez is currently a free agent although it could be very possible he resigns with the Detroit Tigers with Victor Martinez (torn ACL) done for the season. Injuries have held Ordonez back the past couple seasons but he’s serviceable and definitely a top 10 designated hitter going into the 2012 season.

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