Article Written by: Julian Beck
With Spring Training getting underway, AOSN felt like it was time to start our “Top 10″ fantasy rankings by position. To start things off, we will be ranking the Top 10 catchers for the 2014 baseball season. These rankings are for a normal Fantasy Baseball format, but will also work good in NL Only or AL Only Leagues.
Pending injuries, this should be an accurate list of rankings.
|2014 Catcher Rankings|
|Buster Posey||Posey had a down year in 2013. Hitting only .294 with 15 HR and 72 RBI. He has the ability to hit .300-30-100. Posey is the only catcher that has that ability, so he is the #1 catcher based on upside.|
|Yadier Molina||Molina has been known for his defensive ability throughout his career, but over the past three years he has hit .313 while averaging 62.7 runs, 16 home runs, 73.7 RBI and 6.3 stolen bases. Going into the season at age 31, Molina looks locked in for another bigs season.|
|Joe Mauer||Shifting over to first base should keep Mauer fresh throughout the season with well needed rest from behind the dish. Healthy Mauer = productive numbers. Look for his HR, R, and RBI totals to increase in 2014 while maintaing a .300 batting average.|
|Brian McCann||The move to Yankee Stadium will pay big dividends for Brian McCann. His average has slumped a bit in recent years, but the power is there. McCann has averaged 21.4 home runs and 79.8 RBI|
|Jonathan Lucroy||Lucroy had a career year in 2013, posting a .280-18-82 state line and also swiping 9 bags. He led all catchers with 82 RBIs and 9 SBs last season. He looks to carry over his impressive 2013 season into 2014. He will have more production in front and behind him in the lineup. Look for his RBI and home run total to increase in 2014.|
|Willin Rosario||Wilin Rosario has averaged 24.5 home runs and 75 RBI over the past two seasons. He narrowed the gap of his home-away splits last year as he posted a .817 OPS at home and a .785 mark on the road. He has a bad habit of free swinging, leading to many strikeouts and not enough walks, with 42 walks all of last season.|
|Carlos Santana||Over the past three years Carlos Santana has averaged .253 with 77 runs, 21.7 home runs and 76.3 RBI. His power is enough to compensate for the batting average. He will be switching off at first base and even third base some days out of the week and that shall keep him fresher, allowing him to raise his batting average and RBI total.|
|Salvador Perez||Perez is only 23 years old, and has all the potential to be a top-five catcher at seasons end. He makes so much contact that he only had 23 walks in 2013 but only had 63 whiffs. If he plays a full season he will post career numbers across the board.|
|Matt Wieters||While Matt Wieters may never be the perennial MVP candidate he was cracked up to be when he made it to the bigs in 2009, he has hit at least 27 doubles and 22 homers in each of the past three seasons.|
|Evan Gattis||Gattis became a household name in the first half of 2013, blasting 14 homers and 37 RBI before the All-Star break. With McCann out the picture now the free swinging catcher should be in line for a 25+ home run year but his batting average may never top .250.|
|Sleeper for 2014:Yasmani Grandal||Now 25, Grandal might be a forgotten man in fantasy after going through a 50-game suspension and the knee surgery in 2013. If he can stay healthy for the 2014 Grandal looks to compete for a top-ten end of the year ranking. He has great power but also makes good contact. He sports a one-to-one strikeout-to-walk ratio. Keep your eye out for Yasmani Grandal for the 2014 baseball season.|
The strategy to drafting a solid catcher is to wait for one. If you can’t get Posey on your team in rounds 2, 3, or 4, you may want to wait until round 8 to pick a catcher. The stats may not be as impressive as Posey’s numbers at seasons end but you will still draft a catcher that won’t hurt you.