Continuing in our series of ranking the National League by position, we give you the top 10 NL catchers for 2010. Last year, I went into my rankings assuming that the catcher position was deep for the first time in years. Not so fast, my friend. I could not have been more wrong.
With that said, so many NL catchers has bad seasons on 2009, that it is difficult to rank them since we don't know whether 2009 was just a down year for guys like Russell Martin, Chris Iannetta and Geovany Soto. Nor do we know if Bengie Molina will have an everyday job in 2010. Based on his HR and RBI totals, he should.
Let's take a look at the top 10 for 2010 with their stats through 9/27/2009:
|McCann, Brian C ATL||470||62||134||35||21||91||44||78||4||0.285||0.349||0.498|
|Montero, Miguel C ARI||407||58||121||30||14||56||36||73||1||0.297||0.357||0.474|
|Molina, Bengie C SF||482||49||125||24||18||75||13||67||0||0.259||0.28||0.425|
|Soto, Geovany C CHC||319||27||70||18||11||45||47||73||1||0.219||0.319||0.386|
|Iannetta, Chris C COL||280||39||63||14||15||50||41||72||0||0.225||0.338||0.45|
|Doumit, Ryan C PIT||265||28||65||15||9||33||17||45||4||0.245||0.29||0.404|
|Martin, Russell C LA||495||61||125||19||6||52||65||79||10||0.253||0.351||0.327|
|Baker, John C FLA||359||59||96||25||9||49||41||88||0||0.267||0.349||0.412|
|Hernandez, Ramon C CIN||282||24||72||12||5||37||32||34||1||0.255||0.333||0.358|
|Molina, Yadier C STL||475||43||138||23||6||52||50||38||9||0.291||0.365||0.381|
Brain McCann is to catchers what Hanley Ramirez is to shortstop-solid production year in and year out. What remains to be seen is how the Diamondbacks Miguel Montero hits in 2010, and whether he can build on his 2009 season where he is leading all NL catchers in AVG and OBP, and is second in SLG.
There are a couple guys that I have concerns about. First is Dodgers catcher Russell Martin. What happened to the power and stolen bases? His .327 SLG percentage does not make me feel any better. For some reason, I think he really concentrated on his defense and game calling this season, and didn't worry about how he did at the plate. Not sure if he bounces back though.
The Giants catcher Bengie Molina and Pirates catcher Ryan Doumit have horrific OBPs. Molina made up for it with solid HR/RBI totals, but he will be looking for a job in the offseason. I did not rank Buster Posey, who should be the Giants catcher in 2010, in the top 10 because Bruce Bochy felt it necessary to only give him 10 ABs in September.
Rockies catcher Chris Iannetta is another guy who disappointed roto owners in 2009. He put up solid HR and RBI totals, but the AVG and OBP are below average. Does he bounce back in 2010? I think he does. I think the Cubs Geovany Soto bounces back as well. A Milton Bradley trade will do wOnders for that Cubs clubhouse.