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The Top 10 National League position players for the 2023 MLB season

Spring Training is right around the corner! The Locked On Podcast Network's MLB hosts voted on the top 10 National League position players going into 2023.

NEW YORK — Spring is here. Major League Baseball players have reported to camp in Arizona and Florida, they’re wearing their spring training garb, throwing and catching balls in the sunshine, and answering questions by the beat writers which means it’s time for all the preseason lists to come out. 

The Locked On Podcast Network’s MLB hosts took a survey and ranked their Top 10 National League position players for the 2023 season.

There was a list of players who were ranked by each host and then tallied and this was the order they came up with. (Feel free to debate amongst yourselves.)

The five players who just missed the cut were: Francisco Lindor (11), Austin Riley (12), Pete Alonso (13), Xander Bogaerts (14), Matt Olson (15).

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10. Bryce Harper, Outfielder, Philadelphia Phillies

Harper had a solid 2022 and helped lead the Phillies to an unlikely World Series appearance. He battled injuries, only appearing in 99 regular season games, and underwent elbow surgery in the offseason so he will miss the first half of 2023 but Harper’s still such a good player that he was voted in the Top 10 because he hit .286/.364/.514 with 18 home runs with a torn UCL.

9. Trea Turner, Infielder, Philadelphia Phillies

Turner led the NL in plate appearances (708) and at-bats (652) in 2022 and he hit .298/.343/.466 with 21 home runs and drove in a career-high 100 runs. His numbers weren’t as high as his stellar 2021 in which he finished in the Top 5 of the NL MVP vote but he’s still a solid player who hits for average.

8. Freddie Freeman, Infielder, Los Angeles Dodgers

Freeman, who won the NL MVP award in 2020 tied his teammate Trea Turner in plate appearances (708) and led the NL with 199 hits in 612 at-bats. He also hit 21 home runs and drove in 100 runs. Freeman is still a guy opposing ballclubs fear when he steps to the plate and he hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down anytime soon.

7. Nolan Arenado, Infielder, St. Louis Cardinals

Arenado finished third in the NL MVP vote in 2022 behind two players who appear later on this list—Manny Machado and Arenado’s teammate Paul Goldschmidt who took home the award. Arenado made the NL All-Star team for the seventh time in his career in 2022 and hit 30 home runs and in 102 runs. He also smacked 42 doubles while batting .293/.358/.533 in 148 games.

6. Fernando Tatis, Jr. Infielder, San Diego Padres

This may be a controversial pick considering Tatis Jr. didn’t play at all in 2022 due to injury and he won’t start the 2023 season on time because he tested positive for steroids in August 2022. But when he’s healthy Tatis Jr. is one of the more exciting and fun players to watch in baseball and if he could get his act together, he could be an MVP candidate once again.

5. Paul Goldschmidt, Infielder, St. Louis Cardinals

Goldschmidt, the reigning NL MVP, missed his career-high in home runs by one in 2022. He finished with 36 in 2013 when he was with the Diamondbacks. And he led the NL in slugging percentage (.578), OPS (.981), and OPS+ (180). He is a seven-time NL All-Star and picked up his fifth Silver Slugger in 2022.

4. Ronald Acuña Jr., Outfielder, Atlanta Braves

Acuña Jr. has battled some injuries of late but the Braves are hoping their young outfielder will be healthy in 2023 and return to form. He played in 119 games in 2022 and batted .266/.370/.517 with 15 home runs and 50 runs batted in. He finished with 124 hits and 24 doubles while being voted to the NL All-Star for the third time in his career.

3. Manny Machado, Infielder, San Diego Padres

Machado had a stellar 2022 campaign finishing second in the NL MVP vote while batting .298/.366/.531 with 32 home runs and 102 runs batted in. He also hit 37 doubles and played in 150 games. He helped lead the 89-win Padres to a surprising NLCS appearance in 2022 where they ultimately lost in five to the Philadelphia Phillies.

2. Juan Soto, Outfielder, San Diego Padres

Soto’s numbers were down a bit in 2022 when he was traded from the Washington Nationals to the San Diego Padres but baseball pundits are expecting a bounceback season from the 23-year-old outfielder who will be playing in his first full season with the Padres. Soto, who lead the NL in walks (135), also slugged 27 home runs and drove in 62 runs while hitting 25 doubles.

1. Mookie Betts, Outfielder, Los Angeles Dodgers

Betts hit a career-high 35 home runs in 2022 while driving in 82 runs, smacking 40 doubles, and scoring 117 times. He made the All-Star team for the sixth time in his career and he picked up a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger while garnering enough votes to finish fifth in the NL MVP race. Betts is solid player year in and year out and it’s not a surprise that he tops this list.

SUBSCRIBE: The Locked On Podcast Network has a daily podcast for EVERY MLB team, find yours today! Free and available everywhere

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