Red Sox vs the AL East: first basemen

4 of 5

Sep 4, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis (19) doubles in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

2. Chris Davis, Orioles

I feel that it’s worth mentioning that Davis just barely edged Napoli in these rankings, but while Davis is coming off a tough 2014 season, his upside is undeniable. Davis was a legitimate MVP candidate in 2013, finishing third in voting while slashing .286/.370/.634 with a league-leading 53 home runs and 138 RBIs. However, he came back down to earth in a big way last season. Davis’s slash line dropped to .196/.300/.404 while playing just 127 games between trips to the disabled list and a suspension for adderal. And while factors such as his rising strikeout rate (33.0% compared to 29.6% the season before) and his isolated power taking a big hit (.348 in 2013 to .209 last season), the main factor in his down year was a substantial drop in BABIP as his .242 mark last season was well below his career average of .320. Davis is the stereotypical high-strikeout slugger, but next season, he should reach base enough to put himself back into the conversation of best power hitters in the league.