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Thanks to some tweaks to the standard CBS eligibility rules to account for the 60-game season, Cody Bellinger will indeed qualify at first base to begin 2021.

And the position sure could use him. It got hit the hardest of any during the weirdness that was the 2020 season, with most of the old standbys underachieving considerably.

So was it just a product of the small sample? Should we give them a pass for it? Is two months of disappointment enough to suggest they're actually different now?

Let's take a look.

Note that these rankings are intended for 5x5 scoring (such as Rotisserie leagues), but I note distinctions for points leagues where applicable.  

Top 20 first basemen for 2021
1
Freddie Freeman Atlanta Braves 1B
He's a distant No. 1 with Cody Bellinger out of the mix, and as unpredictable as the rest of this position is, there's a strong case for Freddie Freeman to go in Round 1. He wouldn't have sustained this year's pace over a full season, but stud production is a given with him.
2
Cody Bellinger Los Angeles Dodgers CF
While Cody Bellinger's output lagged behind Freeman's, his performance wasn't as bad as it looked. The improved strikeout rate carried over from his MVP-winning 2019, and his .284 xBA was much better than his actual .239 mark. He remains one of the safer bets for 40 homers and maybe the only first base-eligible player of any use in steals, so underestimate him at your own risk.
3
DJ LeMahieu New York Yankees 2B
As unsustainable as DJ LeMahieu's 2019 seemed, he managed to one-up it in 2020, hitting the free agent market after back-to-back career seasons. His power production will likely regress if he leaves the Yankees, but probably not enough to drop him in these rankings, especially since he's such a distant No. 1 at second base.
4
Jose Abreu Chicago White Sox 1B
Here's where things get difficult. It's not as simple as "Jose Abreu was a top-five first baseman in 2020, so therefore, he's top five," because ultimately, the long track record counts for more than a couple good months, especially for a guy in his mid-30s. But it becomes a question of downside at a position with so many letdowns, and his is awfully high.
5
Luke Voit New York Yankees 1B
After the way he bounced back from an injury-afflicted 2019, leading all the majors in home runs this year, everyone should feel pretty confident saying Luke Voit is good. How good I think is still up for debate given the inconsistencies with his plate discipline and batted-ball profile since joining the Yankees.
6
Pete Alonso New York Mets 1B
Though the production was worse, the launch angle and hard-hit readings were remarkably similar to Pete Alonso's monstrous rookie season, when he hit 53 home runs, and he was beginning to pick up the pace when the season came to an all-too-sudden end, hitting 10 of his 16 home runs in September.
7
Matt Olson Oakland Athletics 1B
As with Alonso, Matt Olson's disappointing 2020 isn't because his actual profile changed. It's because these things are bound to happen when a six-month season is reduced to two months, especially for a player whose success is built more on a huge home run total than a stable batting average.
8
Paul Goldschmidt St. Louis Cardinals 1B
Paul Goldschmidt himself underwhelmed a bit in 2020, but not in a way anyone would have seen coming after 2019, when it looked like his batting average was tanking. It's almost like he sold out for batting average, cutting down on his strikeouts while hitting more line drives, but his .517 xSLG suggests the power was still there.
9
Anthony Rizzo Chicago Cubs 1B
Anthony Rizzo's strikeout and walk rates remain as stellar as ever, potentially vaulting him to sixth in these rankings in points leagues while suggesting he may not be on such a swift decline. It's pretty clear by now he isn't going to be one of the top home run hitters at the position, though.
10
Dominic Smith New York Mets 1B
Though he'll be a defensive misfit if the universal DH doesn't return, Dominic Smith clearly established himself as a fixture in the Mets lineup, his breakthrough fully backed up by Statcast's expected stats. In the end, though, it's still just two good months, which gives him nowhere near the track record of those ahead of him on this list.
11
Vladimir Guerrero Toronto Blue Jays 1B
Vladimir Guerrero continued to make the sort of hard contact that suggests a stud outcome is in the offing, and the low strikeout rate means he has cleared the biggest hurdle already. But he still put the ball on the ground too much -- more often than in 2019, in fact -- and until it changes, his production will remain mostly theoretical.
12
Max Muncy Los Angeles Dodgers 1B
Given that his plate discipline and quality of contact were largely unchanged, Max Muncy is yet another example of a first baseman whose low batting average may have simply been the result of him not having another four months to fix it. He has the added excuse of having fractured his left ring finger in the buildup to the restart.
13
Mike Moustakas Cincinnati Reds 2B
Mike Moustakas, now primarily a second baseman, replaces third base eligibility with first base eligibility heading into 2021, and while he happens to be coming off one of his worst seasons, his profile was mostly intact, with with any slight variations being easily attributable to the small sample. You can expect a typical Moustakas season with 30-plus home runs and a modest batting average next year.
14
Miguel Sano Minnesota Twins 1B
Miguel Sano has long been an outlier in how hard he hits the ball and hit it harder than ever this year, but it turns out a 43.9 percent strikeout rate is one even he can't withstand. A two-month stretch doesn't make for a new baseline, though, and he remains as likely as anyone of hitting 50 homers in 2020. Maybe drop him a couple spots in points leagues.
15
Eric Hosmer San Diego Padres 1B
Eric Hosmer talked a big game about elevating the ball more in 2020, and he got off to a hot start by doing so. But he battled illness and injury for most of the two months and was back to putting the ball on the ground in September. So how much has he changed, really? Given his mostly lackluster track record, I'd consider this ranking to be a generous one.
16
Carlos Santana Cleveland Indians 1B
Though he didn't hit the ball as hard as during his career-best 2019, Carlos Santana's .253 xBA and .450 xSLG were in line with his career norms, and his plate discipline was as exemplary as ever. So even though he'll be 35 next year, I'm inclined to give him as much of a pass as the other disappointing first basemen. Slot him right behind Max Muncy in points leagues.
17
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Rhys Hoskins Philadelphia Phillies 1B
Rhys Hoskins would obviously rank higher if not for his UCL repair in October. Even though the procedure -- which was not Tommy John -- has a projected recovery time of only 4-6 months, putting him potentially on track for opening day, its track record isn't as established.
18
Josh Bell Pittsburgh Pirates 1B
If there's a first baseman who doesn't get a pass for his 2020 struggles, it's Josh Bell, whose 2019 breakout was already met with some skepticism. The high strikeout rate was totally out of character, though, and might be attributable to the oddball season. He'll also need to get the launch right again, but we've seen him do it before.
19
Ryan Mountcastle Baltimore Orioles LF
The Orioles clearly weren't in a position to rush Ryan Mountcastle this year, but when he finally got the call in late August, the rookie seemed equipped for the task at hand. He could stand to elevate better and tap into his power a little more, especially since a near-.400 BABIP isn't repeatable from year to year, but he has a leg up simply by not burying himself in strikeouts.
20
Tommy La Stella Oakland Athletics 2B
Tommy La Stella couldn't follow up on 2019's power breakthrough but did enough to position himself for a full-time role heading into free agency. He's not exactly a slap hitter, putting the ball in the air enough to send an occasional few over the fence, but his strength is making contact, his microscopic strikeout rate allowing him to stand out all the more in Head-to-Head points leagues.