Top 10 Right Now – Catchers

We’re now fully in transition from the old guard to the new, especially once Buster Posey gets slowly phased out of the position.  Several exciting young catchers could soon challenge for a top 10 spot.

A new list will be published each Monday leading up to pitchers and catchers reporting in February. The lists will highlight the Top 10 players at each position, managers and executives, finishing up with the Ultimate Top 10 list, a ranking of each of the position’s number one player.

Here’s a list of what’s to come and already been published:
Nov. 13 – Executives
Nov. 20 – Managers
Nov. 27 – Second Basemen
Dec. 4 – Relief Pitchers
Dec. 11 – Center Fielders
Dec. 18 – Shortstops
Dec. 25 – Designated Hitters
Jan. 1 – Left Fielders
Jan. 8 – First Basemen
Jan. 15 – Starting Pitchers
Jan. 22 – Catchers
Jan. 29 – Third Basemen
Feb. 5 – Right Fielders
Feb. 12 – Ultimate Top 10

Below are two lists, one (“Statistical”) shows players ranked per a combination of their 2017 stats and where they ranked in those stats per their respective position. Offensive, defensive, baserunning and all-inclusive stats are included in the calculations.  The second (“Adjusted”) list is based on stats but then given adjustments based on track record, injuries and projections and reflects our ranking of the players as they head into 2018.

The list in which the players appear depends mostly on where they played the most games (or innings) in 2017 but also where they project to play this coming year if substantially different than last (i.e. role player getting a more permanent position).

2017 Statistical Top 10
T-10. Yadier Molina
T-10. Tucker Barnhart
9. Wellington Castillo
8. Austin Barnes
7. Mike Zunino
T-5. Kurt Suzuki
T-5. JT Realmuto
4. Yasmani Grandal
3. Willson Contreras
2. Gary Sanchez
1. Buster Posey

Adjusted Top 10
10. Yadier Molina
9. Wellington Castillo
8. Salvador Perez
7. Wilson Ramos
6. JT Realmuto
5. Yasmani Grandal
4. Jonathan Lucroy
3. Gary Sanchez
2. Willson Contreras
1. Buster Posey

In consideration (with their rank from last year’s list): Suzuki, Zunino, Barnes, Barnhart, Tyler Flowers, Alex Avila, Martin Maldonado, Chris Iannetta, Robinson Chirinos, Christian Vazquez, Manny Pina, Tony Wolters

Notes: No need or reason to get Posey off the top spot yet… we had Contreras as the 4th best last year (he finished third) and moves up again this year… remember Jonathan Lucroy and Wilson Ramos?… not sure why Grandal has fallen out of favor in LA.  He’s both a better hitter and pitch framer than Barnes (who’ll never hit)… Perez might play too much which leads to him wearing down to ever challenge for the top 5… one more top 10 season left in Molina?… I am a strong believer in Wolters, but the time share with Iannetta keeps them both from top 10 consideration… former mainstays at the position like Russell Martin, Brian McCann and Matt Wieters most likely won’t find their way back onto these lists

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