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NL-Only Catcher Rankings with Tiers & Projections

Before you get to my 2020 NL-Only Catcher Rankings, I’d like to share a bit about my process. It’s changed quite a bit over the last few years and it’s taken a lot of my own personal biases out of the equation.

Starting in 2017 I believe I began using the Projecting X system, developed by Mike Podhorzer and made easier by Tanner Bell, to do all my projections. Basically I’m able to view three-year stats in a variety of peripheral areas, project those stats for the coming season, and the system translates those into expected stats in the categories that we worry about in fantasy. Mike and Tanner do a much better job explaining it than I, so for sure visit the link above.

The big takeaway is that this process bypasses my perceived values of MLB players and just gives me a nice set of reliable projections. I then plug those projections into Tanner Bell’s Automated SGP Ranking Tool, and it spits out the rankings for the league parameters I have set.

My job is then to look at the rankings and see what doesn’t fit. Oftentimes I see a few players that seem to be out of wack. I then revisit the projections and see if they need tweaking. If they do, I can rerun the rankings with new projections and see what we come up with. If the projections seem to be solid, I then know that my perception bias was getting in the way. I’ll admit sometimes it’s still hard to go against my gut. It’s also why my NL-only Catcher Rankings, along with all my other rankings are always a work in progress… But then, that’s the way it should probably be.


Enjoying these NL-Only Catcher Rankings? For more great rankings, strategy, and analysis check out the 2020 FantraxHQ Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit. We’ll be adding more content from now right up until Opening Day!


Drafting catchers in 2020 NL-Only Leagues

Though the catcher pool isn’t as bleak as it looked heading into 2019, things will still get ugly if you go with the zero-catcher strategy. I really want to grab one of the top 9 at worst. I might gamble on Travis d’Arnaud maintaining some of the gains from last season or on a small rebound out of Buster Posey. Once you get past Posey there’s just not much help and with the exception of Francisco Mejia, absolutely no upside.

My ideal setup might be grabbing Wilson Ramos who seems to be a bit underrated and then pairing him with a Stephen Vogt or Tyler Flowers, who, though they won’t see a ton of at-bats, could contribute double-digit HRs. Honestly though, there’s such a lack of upside in the NL catcher pool in general, it’s not worth passing by better hitters at other positions to get some small advantage with my second catcher.

How these rankings work…

For each player I’ve included their rank at the position, the stats I project them to end the season with, and I’ve tried to group them into tiers as logically as possible. The first four tiers have pretty clear delineations, but you could probably toss the catchers in tiers five and six in a blender and not notice the difference. Most of the jobs in the NL seem pretty clear cut, but I will be keeping an eye on the situation in San Diego. If it looks like Francisco Mejia is going to get a clear majority of the at-bats I will consider moving him ahead of Posey and d’Arnaud on upside alone.

Enough of the chatter. On to the rankings!


If you’re like us you can’t wait until spring to get the 2020 fantasy baseball season started? Well, you don’t have to. Leagues are already forming at Fantrax.com, so head on over and start or join a league today.


2020 NL-Only Catcher Rankings

RnkTierPlayerHRRunsRBISBAVG
11J.T. Realmuto2485865.277
21Willson Contreras2368742.264
32Will Smith2463672.249
42Wilson Ramos1652720.278
52Omar Narvaez1959540.270
62Yadier Molina1453593.267
73Jorge Alfaro1850593.243
83Travis d'Arnaud1851581.244
93Buster Posey1053511.270
103Carson Kelly1655531.240
114Kurt Suzuki1741440.279
124Francisco Mejia1543432.252
135Tucker Barnhart1239501.244
145Jacob Stallings946390.253
155Tony Wolters547431.246
165Yan Gomes1133370.238
176Victor Caratini727310.240
186Stephen Vogt822281.248
196Tyler Flowers927260.225
206Curt Casali721260.247
216Manny Pina721250.234
226Austin Hedges1020271.217
236Dom Nunez821230.230
246Austin Barnes421201.221
256Domingo Leyba315151.260
266Francisco Cervelli417160.242
277Aramis Garcia615130.231
287Andrew Knizner315142.217
297Tomas Nido314160.208
307Luke Maile213141.197

More NL-Only Rankings: C | 1B | 2B | 3B | SS | OF | SP | RP

Got a beef with my NL-Only Catcher Rankings? Did I miss someone? Let me hear it in the comments below or call me out on Twitter (@rotodaddy). Just be kind. Dealing with the catcher pool has taken a toll on my psyche I may never recover from.


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