Matthew Pouliot

Strike Zone

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2014 Catcher Rankings

Monday, July 22, 2013

Here are some very preliminary 2014 catcher rankings for your perusal. Try not to take the lists all too seriously; I haven't actually done projections for any of these players and many, many changes will be in store for the first official rankings in January.


Players set to become free agents this winter are listed without a team, while players with contract options are listed with stars. Players are listed at positions they're likely to qualify at next year, though there are still question marks there. Edwin Encarnacion is probably the biggest; he has 10 games in at third base so far. That's where I'm listing him, but he's far from a sure thing to qualify.


These aren't true keeper rankings, since only the 2014 season is being taken into consideration here. But if you're looking to make trades in keeper leagues in the coming weeks, I hope this piece will help you along.




Follow us at @Rotoworld_BB and @matthewpouliot on Twitter.



Click to see other preliminary 2014 rankings:

Top 300 | SP | RP | OF | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | C | DH




2014 Catcher Rankings


  • McCann, Ruiz and Saltalamacchia will be the top catcher free agents, and all should land multiyear deals this winter. One figures McCann is a goner in Atlanta, with the Braves instead relying on Gattis and Gerald Laird. The Phillies and Red Sox, on the other hand, will work hard to keep their catchers. Both Phillies catcher prospects -- Tommy Joseph and Sebastian Valle -- have been big disappointments and can no longer be included in Philadelphia's 2014 plans. The Red Sox have Lavarnway, who has improved defensively, to potentially replace Salty if the price tag gets too high. I have a feeling the Yankees will end up with one of the three. The Rangers, Dodgers, Mets, Cubs and Rays could also be in the market for starting catchers.


  • After the big three, the best free agents are Pierzynski, Suzuki, Buck and Navarro. Hundley and Lavarnway are trade candidates.


  • Given d'Arnaud's injuries this season, the Mets can't pencil him in as their 2014 starter. I imagine they'll sign a stopgap, with the hope that d'Arnaud could come up and win the job in June. Perhaps they'll simply re-sign Buck at a pay cut.


  • The Cubs were hoping Castillo would emerge as their long-term catcher, but I'm not sure he has much upside beyond what he is now. Since contending in the NL Central next year is a reasonable possibility, they should look to improve.


  • Lobaton has been a nice surprise while splitting time with Jose Molina in Tampa Bay this season, hitting .270/.330/.393 and playing quality defense. He's probably not someone who should start 120 games, but the Rays won't necessarily need to sign someone to play over him.


  • Jesus Montero should be done as a catcher, and his chances of starting at first base or DH for the Mariners next year have taken a hit due to his month-long absence following knee surgery and Justin Smoak's improved play in Seattle. He's also a Biogenesis player, adding to the mystery. That said, there's still quite a bit of upside here. He could be a top-10 fantasy catcher or entirely worthless.



1 Buster Posey Giants 1 1
2 Joe Mauer Twins 2 2
3 Carlos Santana Indians 5 5
4 Wilin Rosario Rockies 10 8
5 Yadier Molina Cardinals 8 4
6 Salvador Perez Royals 6 9
7 Matt Wieters Orioles 4 7
8 Jonathan Lucroy Brewers 16 11
9 Evan Gattis Braves 44 22
10 Brian McCann   13 12
11 Miguel Montero Diamondbacks 11 10
12 Jason Castro Astros 23 17
13 Wilson Ramos Nationals 21 32
14 Jarrod Saltalamacchia   18 13
15 J.P. Arencibia Blue Jays 12 15
16 Mike Zunino Mariners 62 21
17 Russell Martin Pirates 20 18
18 Yasmani Grandal Padres 25 20
19 A.J. Pierzynski   15 14
20 Josh Phegley White Sox 87 44
21 Alex Avila Tigers 14 26
22 Carlos Ruiz   19 19
23 Jesus Montero Mariners 9 41
24 Devin Mesoraco Reds 28 33
25 Chris Iannetta Angels 22 24
26 Ryan Doumit Twins 17 16
27 Ryan Lavarnway Red Sox 47 NR
28 John Jaso Athletics 26 25
29 Hank Conger Angels 41 40
30 Dioner Navarro   40 34
31 Kurt Suzuki   36 30
32 A.J. Ellis Dodgers 27 29
33 Rob Brantly Marlins 29 31
34 Travis d'Arnaud Mets 35 42
35 Derek Norris Athletics 43 43
36 Tyler Flowers White Sox 24 23
37 Jose Lobaton Rays 74 39
38 Welington Castillo Cubs 31 28
39 John Buck   33 27
40 Nick Hundley Padres 34 NR
41 Yan Gomes Indians 64 1B 38

Matthew Pouliot is the Executive Editor of and has been doing the site's baseball projections for the last 10 years. Follow him on Twitter @matthewpouliot.
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