It’s the most important offensive position in fantasy baseball.  You have got to have a very strong 1B to have a credible team.  Actually you should possess multiple 1B’s.  The strongest of offenses will have a strong #1 starter, another power hitting utility 1B, and possibly a 1B in the outfield.  This year there are a lot of 1B’s that quality in the OF.  The power that they offer make them great late round picks as an OF.  Guys like Morales, Belt, Morse, Alonso, Trumbo, and LaHair are all 1B/OF.  Considering all of that, here are my 1B rankings.

2012 Fantasy First Base Rankings:

1. Albert Pujols (LAA)
2. Miguel Cabrera (DET)
3. Joey Votto (CIN)
4. Adrian Gonzalez (BOS)
5. Prince Fielder (DET)
6. Mark Teixeira (NYY)
7. Pablo Sandoval (SF)
8. Eric Hosmer (KC)
9. Kevin Youkilis (BOS)
10. Paul Konerko (CWS)
11. Michael Cuddyer (COL)
12. Joe Mauer (MIN)
13. Carlos Santana (CLE)
14. Freddie Freeman (ATL)
15. Michael Morse (WAS)
16. Michael Young (TEX)
17. Brandon Belt (SF)
18. Lance Berkman (STL)
19. Ryan Howard (PHI)
20. Paul Goldschmidt (ARI)
21. Ike Davis (NYM)
22. Billy Butler (KC)
23. Mark Reynolds (BAL)
24. Kendrys Morales (LAA)
25. Justin Smoak (SEA)
26. Mark Trumbo (LAA)
27. Adam Dunn (CWS)
28. Nick Swisher (NYY)
29. Mike Napoli (TEX)
30. Howie Kendrick (LAA)
31. Justin Morneau (MIN)
32. Yonder Alonso (SD)
33. Mike Carp (SEA)
34. Gaby Sanchez (MIA)
35. Carlos Pena (TB)
36. Chris Davis (BAL)
37. Adam Lind (TOR)
38. Lucas Duda (NYM)
39. Jesus Guzman (SD)
40. Carlos Lee (HOU)
41. Daniel Murphy (NYM)
42. Edwin Encarnacion (TOR)
43. Bryan LaHair (CHC)
44. Mitch Mooreland (TEX)
45. Todd Helton (COL)
46. Garrett Jones (PIT)
47. Matt Adams (STL)
48. Anthony Rizzo (CHC)
49. Adam LaRoche (WAS)
50. Aubrey Huff (SF)
51. James Loney (LAD)
52. Ty Wigginton (PHI)
53. Luke Scott (TB)
54. Kila Ka’aihue (OAK)
55. Brandon Allen (OAK)
56. Casey Kotchman (CLE)

Albert Pujols is still #1.  At the end of the season he will have a better average, more home runs, and more rbi’s than Miguel Cabrera.  Miguel Cabrera is great.  Both of these guys are elite players and deserve to be ranked #1 and #2 in all of baseball.  Votto, Gonzalez, Fielder, and Teixeira should all be drafted in rounds 1 and 2.  Votto is an MVP candidate with good power, some speed, and an elite AVG.  Gonzalez will hit over .300 and push 40 HR’s.  Fielder should repeat last year’s numbers or slightly improve upon them.  Teixiera can still hit 35+ HR and should raise his AVG some this year.  Sandoval should go in round 3 and is better fit as a 3B.

Eric Hosmer is going to have a breakout season.  He has the potential to put up Joey Votto numbers.  He can hit for a high AVG, hit 30 HR, 100 RBI, and even steal 15 bases.  He’s a 5 tool guy.  If you can take him in round 5 or 6 and make him your utility your going to have amazing power.  Target one of the top 5 1B’s and then take Hosmer as well.  Having a Feilder/Hosmer combo is deadly.  Youkilis should be your insurance plan for Hosmer.  He has potential to produce, but I’m not sure he can stay healthy anymore.  Paul Konerko is consistent.  You have to expect a drop off eventually, but he doesn’t seem to ever slow down.  I’d trust him another year.

Cuddyer, Mauer, and Santana are better fit for their other positions that they are available at.  Having a non 1B in your 1B spot seems weak to me.  Freddie Freeman is ranked much lower on most sites.  I don’t really understand why he’s being undervalued this year.  He has nice power.  His numbers will continue to improve.  Michael Morse would look better in your outfield.  Watch his recent injury problems first.  Michael Young should also play another position.  His numbers aren’t good enough to start at 1B.

I’m really big on Brandon Belt this year.  I have him ranked much higher than most sites.  He will be in a position battle at first with Aubrey Huff, but how long do you really think Huff can last?  Belt is a 5 tool guy.  Once he gets everyday playing time he will break out.  I’d take the chance on him this year in the later rounds.  He makes a very good 3rd of 4th outfielder, since he’s also available there.  A guy I don’t want to take a risk on is Lance Berkman.  I don’t like his chances to repeat in a lineup that lost Pujols.

Ryan Howard is a good middle round pick.  As of right now he’s expected to miss a month in a half.  He’s a great guy to stash on your DL.  Once he’s back, your team gets a huge boost.  You can get him for a cheap value, and he might put you over the top.  Goldschmidt and Davis are two risky young 1B’s with high upside.  Draft them at your own risk.  Billy Butler and Mark Reynolds will give you the same numbers they give you every year.  Butler doesn’t really hit enough HR’s and Reynolds will kill your AVG.

Kendrys Morales is risky, but could put up solid numbers.  He’s definitely worth a late round pick, especially as an outfielder.  His power potential makes him a solid #3 or #4 OF.  People forget  how much potential Justin Smoak has.  He is virtually being undrafted in every fantasy league this year.  A a hot finish and improve lineup, Smoak is ready to have a decent season.  He has nowhere to go but up.  Mark Trumbo is much like Kendrys Morales, but with a lower AVG.  You can also plug him in at OF.

Adam Dunn comes in at #27.  Do I think his career is over?  No.  Do I think he can still hit HR’s?  Yes.  However, his low AVG makes him very risky and makes his HR upside almost not worth the risk.  If he’s there in the last round and you need power, take the chance.  Swisher is pretty consistent each year.  Check out my catcher rankings to see why Napoli is a bust this year.  Justin Morneau is much like Dunn, but he doesn’t have as much power.  He can hit for a better AVG, if he bounces back.  I obviously don’t see a full bounce back.  I gotta see him produce to believe he can still do it.

Yonder Alonso, Mike Carp, and Gaby Sanchez are are talented young players.  Alonso and Carp are available at OF.  Stick them there if they are your guys.  Gaby Sanchez isn’t really as good as he once appeared.  He didn’t have huge upside to begin with, so he won’t improve much more.  Carlos Pena is what he is.  Good source of power with the worst AVG on the planet.

Were already past the point of guys that I actually recommend drafting.  I wouldn’t seriously c0nsider any of the other guys on this list unless your in a super deep league.  If that’s the case, I hope you would have completed your offense by now and are now drafting late starting pitching.

You can get my thoughts on every player in the league immediately with my fantasy cheat sheet.  It uses a unique color coded system that tells you exactly who to draft.  If you want to dominate your draft, it’s a must have.  If your interested in that you can click here.

Listen to this past week’s Baltimore Sports Report podcast.  I joined the cast to talk fantasy baseball drafting.  You can listen to my sleepers, busts (cough cough Mike Napoli), and late round picks by clicking here.

The Fantasy God’s Catcher Rankings
The Fantasy God’s Second Base Rankings
The Fantasy God’s Third Base Rankings

Follow The Fantasy God on Twitter .