Check out Page 2's choices below for the top 10 current underrated baseball players, then check out readers' top choices for the most underrated baseball player. Also vote in our poll to crown the most underrated player in the game.
Here are Page 2's choices:
1. Rafael Palmeiro (Rangers)
When sure-fire Hall of Famers are discussed, his name never comes up. But he will almost certainly finish with more than 500 homers, and could make it into the Top 12 of all-time. He's also an RBI machine -- with eight 100-plus RBI seasons, including seven in a row.
2. Jamie Moyer (Mariners)
He's got three speeds -- slow, slower, slowest -- which give everybody fits (he's 89-40 over the past six seasons). But he's
particularly tough on the three-time defending champion New York Yankees (2-0 with
a 1.35 ERA this year). In fact, Lou Piniella has said many times that the
Mariners would have dethroned the Bronx Bombers last year if Moyer had not been hurt.
3. Mike Sweeney (Royals)
Admit it. You know nothing about the guy.
(American League fantasy-leaguers and fans of the Royals, please put down
your hands.) As a public service, Page 2 presents the following offensive numbers for the past three years -- 78 home runs, 336 RBI, .323 batting average.
4. Roberto Alomar (Indians)
Yes, everybody knows he's good. But how many
understand he might be the best second-baseman -- unparalleled fielder,
brilliant baserunner, great contact hitter, good power -- who ever played?
5. Edgar Martinez (Mariners)
Has played in the shadows of Griffey, A-Rod
and now Bret Boone and Ichiro for a decade. But few have been more
consistently productive, especially in the clutch. And no one -- ever
-- has had a sweeter swing.
6. Edgardo Alfonzo (Mets)
With a healthy Fonzie, the Mets made the World
Series last year. With an unhealthy Fonzie (bad back), the Mets were the
biggest disappointment of 2001. When his back finally began to get better a
few weeks ago, the Mets went on a 17-4 tear. Coincidence? We don't think so.
7. Jon Lieber (Cubs)
Forget Sammy Sosa. Here's the guy who's kept the
beloved Cubbies in the postseason hunt all year long with a 17-6 record and a 3.70 ERA, even though he pitches at hitter-friendly Wrigley Field.
8. Wade Miller (Astros)
The Astros' second-year right-hander is not even considered the top young pitcher on his own team! (That
would be Roy Oswalt, who is 14-2.) But, with some of the nastiest stuff in
the league, he's the winningest pitcher (16-7) on the NL's best team.
9. Ryan Klesko (Padres)
For a supposedly one-dimensional slugger, this
former Brave is putting up some incredible stats -- 28 home runs, 108 RBI, .290 batting average and 22 stolen bases. And, as long as we're on
the subject, the Padres have been playing pretty good ball, especially for an afterthought in baseball's toughest division.
10. Jermaine Dye (A's)
Once he escaped from the black hole of Kansas
City, he began to show a sports-lovin' nation what he could do. Since joining
the A's 43 games ago, he's helped them to a 32-11 record, while hitting .319, with 11 homers and 45 RBI.
Brian Giles (Pirates), Cliff Floyd (Marlins), Aramis Ramirez (Pirates), Matt Morris (Cardinals), Corey Koskie (Twins), Torii Hunter (Twins), Jose Vidro (Expos).