Pittsburgh Pirates show well in MLB Network Top 10 lists

4 of 5

Sep 8, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman

Neil Walker

(18) hits an RBI single during the eighth inning of a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Pirates defeated the Phillies 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Neil Walker came in somewhat surprisingly at No. 4 in The Shredder’s list of the best second basemen in the game.  I guess leading the majors in HR at your position will do that for you.  Neil Walker is a galvanizing figure in this town, with the heartstrings of fans being tugged every time it’s mentioned that he grew up here in the Burgh, yet still able to draw healthy criticism for his un-healthy injury record.  From MLB.com:

You’ll note from Harold Reynolds‘ commentary in the video that he emphatically does not agree with Walker’s placement in the top 10 at all, showing that Walker is polarizing outside of Pittsburgh as well.  Walker’s stats surely warrant a place at the table (career slash of .273/.340/.432), the only question marks for Walker come solely from his health.  Since a career high of 159 games played in 2011, Walker has missed an average of 29 per games a year with various ailments, some of them beyond his control (appendicitis) and some of them being chronic conditions (the worst back in the National League).  If Walker can stay healthy, his space should be reserved on top 10 lists to come.

We finish our look at the Pirates on the top 10 lists with a surprising entry who suddenly may be fighting for his starting spot.

Next: Mercer Mercer Me Needs No Mercy