SportsNation Blog ArchivesSN Blog Archives Brandon Phillips

How do the top second basemen in Major League Baseball stack up? That question has been answered by our experts in the first installment of the Baseball Tonight 100 (#BBTN100), a project to rank the top players across all 30 teams. We'll reveal a new position each day and unveil the overall 1-100 rankings on March 27.

Do you agree with the experts' take on second basemen? Simply click on the images of the top 10 below to submit your ballot.

Rank: #BBTN100 Top Second Basemen

Robinson Cano

Robinson Cano

Seattle Mariners
BBTN Rank: 1

Aaron Hill

Aaron Hill

Arizona Diamondbacks
BBTN Rank: 10

Howie Kendrick

Howie Kendrick

Los Angeles Angels
BBTN Rank: 9

Ian Kinsler

Ian Kinsler

Detroit Tigers
BBTN Rank: 4

Jason Kipnis

Jason Kipnis

Cleveland Indians
BBTN Rank: 3

Dustin Pedroia

Dustin Pedroia

Boston Red Sox
BBTN Rank: 2

Brandon Phillips

Brandon Phillips

Cincinnati Reds
BBTN Rank: 7

Chase Utley

Chase Utley

Philadelphia Phillies
BBTN Rank: 6

Neil Walker

Neil Walker

Pittsburgh Pirates
BBTN Rank: 8

Ben Zobrist

Ben Zobrist

Tampa Bay Rays
BBTN Rank: 5

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Yankees reject Phillips deal

The Yankees have been busy this offseason (which is the kind of thing that happens in the Bronx when they miss the playoffs), but they've finally found a deal they don't like. They've rejected a straight-up trade of outfielder Brett Gardner for Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips, reportedly citing Phillips' declining numbers at second. They might be right to be concerned -- though Phillips' power numbers are freakishly consistent (he's hit exactly 18 home runs in four straight seasons), his OPS plummeted to .706 in 2013. That's a worrisome sign for a 32-year-old second baseman, but could he have rejuvenated himself in Yankee Stadium, with its short porch and hitter-friendly reputation?

Did the Yankees make the right decision in turning down a trade of Brett Gardner for Brandon Phillips?

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    42%
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    58%

Discuss (Total votes: 42,568)

  • Where will Brandon Phillips be playing next season?

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      52%
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      48%

    Discuss (Total votes: 12,517)

  • Where will Brett Gardner be playing next season?

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      61%
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      39%

    Discuss (Total votes: 12,230)

  • How will the Yankees fare in 2014?

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      40%
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      38%
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      22%

    Discuss (Total votes: 23,927)

  • How will the Reds fare in 2014?

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      35%
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      49%
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      16%

    Discuss (Total votes: 10,946)

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We haven't had a good news conference meltdown yet this season, which is why we're thankful today for Brandon Phillips and his below-league-average on-base percentage. Phillips took issue with a Cincinnati reporter's comment on his lack of plate discipline, laying into said reporter both in the clubhouse and during Dusty Baker's pregame news conference. Phillips has been a reliable power hitter for most of his career, but his bat has gone quiet this season, although Baker has batted him cleanup for much of the season. The reporter's comment was prompted by Baker addressing Phillips' struggles by moving him in the batting order -- to the No. 2 spot.

Here's a sampling of what readers had to say in our Facebook conversation on the story:

What do you think? Leave your comments below.

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Magazine

Every athlete wants to be a musician. So why not give a group of them a head start at achieving their dream by recreating some of the most iconic album covers of all time? That's exactly what ESPN The Magazine has done for its music issue, and the results have to be seen to be believed. Check out the full-size images in the galleries below and then click on the smaller images to rank your favorites!

Behind-The-Scenes Photo Galleries:

Rank: ESPN The Magazine's Cover Acts

Allyson Felix

Allyson Felix

Athlete: Allyson Felix
Artist: Beyonce
Album: Dangerously In Love (2003)

Ryan Lochte

Ryan Lochte

Athlete: Ryan Lochte
Artist: Nirvana baby
Album: Nevermind (1991)

Jimmie Johnson

Jimmie Johnson

Athlete: Jimmie Johnson
Artist: Bob Dylan
Album: The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan (1963)

Alex Morgan

Alex Morgan

Athlete: Alex Morgan
Artist: Katy Perry
Album: One Of The Boys (2008)

Richardson, Woodley, Lynch

Richardson, Woodley, Lynch

Athletes: Trent Richardson, LaMarr Woodley, Marshawn Lynch
Artist: Run-D.M.C.
Album: Ultimate Run-D.M.C. (2003)

Josh Freeman

Josh Freeman

Athlete: Josh Freeman
Artist: Michael Jackson
Album: Thriller (1982)

James Stewart

James Stewart

Athlete: James Stewart
Artist: Rick James
Album: Street Songs (1981)

Upton, Stanton, Phillips . . .

Upton, Stanton, Phillips . . .

Athletes: Justin Upton, Evan Longoria, Brandon Phillips, Giancarlo Stanton, Shane Victorino
Artist: Devo
Album: Freedom Of Choice (1980)

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Brouhaha. Kerfuffle. Donnybrook, even. Brandon Phillips, Yadier Molina and a scrum (there's another one) of Reds and Cardinals gave fans everywhere a rare opportunity to break out some of baseball's best words. It's like breaking out the good dishes for the holidays.

Predictably, Cardinals fans weren't thrilled with Phillips expressing how much he hates the team from St. Louis and setting the stage for Tuesday night's confrontation.

But what about the parts of SportsNation without a prior rooting interest? Is firing up this kind of rivalry a good way to spice up the doldrums of August and put the NL Central (which, by the way, is now tied after another Cardinals win) front and center?

kc3420

nothing wrong with hating the other team. Even so, in 2 games the Reds haven't put up much of a fight on the field. I love my Reds, but if you want to shut the Cards up, then beat them.

-- kc3420
jayeteee

I understand the frustrations of teams that have been down for awhile, but be humble when you get there. That's just the sign of the times, it's not about the name on the front of the jersey anymore. It's about how can I make a name for myself. Money's done that to the game. Kinda' pathetic really.

-- jayeteee
natifanatic717

I'm sure this wasn't the first time a player has had these types of feelings toward a division foe, this just happened to have been said at an inappropriate time and led to an unfortunate result. BP needs to learn when and when not to talk, he wants to be the Ochocinco of baseball and I'm not so sure I can handle that.

-- natifanatic717

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