Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE
We've provided player profiles on our Top 25 fantasy catchers for 2013, and today we give you a few National League catching sleepers that you can grab late in your 2013 fantasy drafts.
This week we have provided you with our Top 25 fantasy catcher rankings, our Top 20 fantasy catching prospect rankings, some player profiles, a few catchers to target and avoid, so the week wouldn't be complete without touching on some catching sleepers for 2013. Earlier today, Brad brought you his American League fantasy catching sleepers for 2013, and here are my National League fantasy catching sleepers for 2013.
Before I get into the player profiles, I'd like to let you know how i define sleepers. A sleeper, to me, is someone who may not get drafted in most standard leagues, but could burst onto the fantasy catcher landscape if things go right for him. The sleepers listed here were not included in our Top 25 rankings, but will be drafted in NL-only leagues.
Devin Mesoraco, CIN
#FreeDevinMesoraco should be the next hot Twitter hash tag, because Reds manager Dusty Baker needs to give Mesoraco a chance to start everyday in 2013. Coming into the 2012 season, Mesoraco was the 16th ranked prospect in baseball according to Baseball America due to his ability to hit for average and power, but Mesoraco struggled in his first chance at facing big league pitching. Mesoraco disappointed many fantasy owners, including me, as he hit just .212-.288-.352 with 5 HRs, 17 runs and 14 RBI in 165 at bats last season. In 436 AAA at bats in 2011, Mesoraco hit .289-.371-.484 with 15 HRs, 60 runs and 71 RBI, so that gives you a glimpse at what kind of season he can put up if given a full time role in 2013.
Rob Brantly, MIA
Well, we certainly timed this article well, as the Marlins just gutted their major league roster in one huge trade on Tuesday, where starting catcher John Buck, and his .192 batting average, is heading to Toronto to hopefully sit on the bench and tutor Travis d'Arnaud. But, the deal also gives Rob Brantly the starting catcher's job in Miami. Brantly was traded to the Marlins, along with Jacob Turner, in the deal that sent starter Anibal Sanchez to the Tigers last summer. In 100 at bats in Miami, Brantly hit .290-.372-.460 with 3 HRs, 8 doubles, 14 runs and 8 RBI. Brantly spent just two seasons in the minors and showed that he can hit for a solid average, as he never hit lower than .255 in any one season. Brantly will get the majority of starts for the decimated Marlins in 2013, and should provide fantasy owners with a solid batting average with a little pop as well.
Ryan Hanigan, CIN
Well, if Dusty Baker remains thick headed and has Mesoraco sit the bench or start the 2013 season in AAA, Ryan Hanigan is another solid catcher to keep your eye on in deeper mixed and NL-only leagues. Hanigan won't hit for power, but he will hit for average, and for those of you in OBP leagues, he walks more than he strikes out. Actually, he has walked more than he has struck out in EVERY season he has been in the big leagues. His career triple slash line is .275-.370-.360, with a career BB/K rate of 1.21. A BB/K rate above 1.00 means the hitter walks more than he strikes out. His 1.19 BB/K rate in 2012 lead all MLB hitters with at least 300 at bats. The list of hitters with a BB/K rate of 1.0 is short, as there were only 10 hitters with a 1.0 or higher BB/K rate in 2012.