2012 Rankings: Top 15 Catchers: A Second Look

It has been awhile since we’ve updated ours mixed league rankings, so now is the best time to start running through them once again (as draft season is going hot and heavy).  Let’s start off with the catching position, which saw one of the best sleepers go down with an injury in Salvador Perez.  While we still don’t have a solid timeline for his return, he has become too big of a risk to draft as a starter in one-catcher formats, dropping him from this list.

Let’s take a look at how everything currently shakes out:

  1. Carlos Santana – Cleveland Indians
  2. Mike Napoli – Texas Rangers
  3. Brian McCann – Atlanta Braves
  4. Buster Posey – San Francisco Giants
  5. Miguel Montero – Arizona Diamondbacks
  6. Alex Avila – Detroit Tigers
  7. Matt Wieters – Baltimore Orioles
  8. Joe Mauer – Minnesota Twins
  9. Jesus Montero – Seattle Mariners
  10. Kurt Suzuki – Oakland Athletics
  11. Jonathan Lucroy – Milwaukee Brewers
  12. Wilson Ramos – Washington Nationals
  13. Geovany Soto – Chicago Cubs
  14. Yadier Molina – St. Louis Cardinals
  15. Salvador Perez – Kansas City Royals

Thoughts:

  • Until we have a solid timeline for Perez he is going to hang onto these rankings.  If he’s only going to miss a minimal amount of time at the start he should get more than enough playing time to justify using him.  We’ve talked about him a lot, and you can click here to view more of my thoughts on him (and my projection prior to the injury).
  • Around the late round catching options I discussed recently (click here to view) were Jonathan Lucroy and Kurt Suzuki.  I know a lot of people want to write Suzuki off, but he’s suffered from poor luck (.245 and .244 BABIP the past two years) and makes good contact (career 11.2% strikeout rate).  In other words, there are a lot of good reasons to think that he will have a solid bounce back campaign.
  • Jesus Montero should catch enough fairly quickly to be eligible at catcher, but from the start of the season most formats are going to have him as just Utility eligible (both ESPN and CBS are set that way).  Just keep that in mind.  If you select him you are going to need to also add a place holder for the first few weeks, especially since Miguel Olivo figures to get the bulk of the starts behind the plate.
  • Don’t get caught up by the name value of Joe Mauer.  Remember his huge 2009 fondly (.365, 28 HR), but it is impossible to think he will even come close to those numbers.  The only other time he has hit more than 9 HR in a season came in 2006 (13 HR) and he is one of the biggest injury risks in the league.  I’d much rather own a high upside player like Matt Wieters at this point in his career, especially since you can generally get him a round or two later.
  • It’s been a slow start to Buster Posey’s spring, going just 1-9 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R thus far.  Don’t get too caught up in the numbers, though.  We all know the potential he brings and, as long as he looks healthy, he’s going to be a good buy on draft day (assuming you don’t have to reach for him).

***** Order the Rotoprofessor 2012 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide, complete with updates from January through the start of the season, for just $6! To place your order click here. *****

Make sure to check out all of our 2012 rankings:

9 comments

  1. jmax says:

    I’ve read Salvator Perez is done 12-14 weeks, so quite a while. I just took him in about the 20th round of a dynasty draft. Is this a bad pick? He’s 21 and already has shown good potential. Although it is a knee injury. My other catcher is Suzuki.

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      I don’t think it’s a terrible pick, though it may have been a little bit early at this point. Talk is that he’ll be ready for June, so I definitely think you are going to get something out of him. It’s just that you probably could’ve gotten him a little bit later on in the draft.

      • jmax says:

        I should’ve added that young players (even those who are 2 years away from the show) were going at an alarming rate. Hosmer 23rd overall, Lawrie 26, Starlin Castro 30, Jennings 32, Garrit Cole 210. Just a few examples. Getting a 21 yr old catcher w experiance who I know will play everyday gave me reason to reach a bit I think

  2. Matt Flynn says:

    No Russell Martin??

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      He’s actually just short for me. It’s hard to rate him highly after he posted a third straight season with an average under .250. I know the power was there, but it also is hard to buy into thanks to a career high HR/FB. There’s a good chance that he regresses.

      • Matt Flynn says:

        He said he wants to steal 20 bases and has 4 already this spring. Does that change things?

        • Rotoprofessor says:

          A lot of people say things during Spring Training, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are going to come true. In a 2-catcher format I would be more willing to roll the dice on him as a second catcher, but at best he could slide into the #15 slot for me and not any higher.

  3. Justin says:

    JP Arencibia had 23 bombs and 78 rbi’s last year and he’s ranked behind these guys? I’ll throw money down that he has a better year than anyone ranked 10-15

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      It’s not impossible, but the problem is Arencibia’s 20 HR could come courtesy of a .210 average. The power is nice, but it definitely comes at a cost so you have to keep that in mind.

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