Brian Creagh opened Catcher week here at Fake Teams with the landscape of the position for fantasy purposeson Monday morning. Now we bring you part 2 of our consensus fantasy catcher rankings for 2016. We used a points system for each of the 30 catchers ranked by each of the Fake Teams writers who participated in the consensus rankings series.
The writers who participated in this series are:
We feel that providing you our consensus position rankings, you get an average ranking from the Fake Teams writers, rather than one writers' opinion, which inherently includes some biases. You will see some players ranked higher by one Fake Teams writer than the others, so this helps the reader see both sides of the argument for/against a certain player who might be getting too much love this offseason.
We published part 1 of our Consensus Catcher Rankings for 2016 yesterday, and below you will find catchers ranked 16-30. Here is a link to Part 1:
Consensus Catcher Rankings - Part 1
Fantasy Catcher Rankings for 2016: 16 - 30
16. Wilson Ramos, Nationals (Last Year: 13)
If your league uses fWAR for any reason, I hope it doesn't, then Ramos was one of the worst starting catchers in the game. Luckily for us fantasy owners, Ramos actually had more fantasy value than on field value in 2015, hitting .229-.259-.358 (not good) with 15 home runs, 41 runs scored and 68 RBI in 504 plate appearances in 2015.
While he struggles to hit for average and get on base, Ramos ranked 10th in home runs and 6th in RBI among all fantasy catchers last season. His .256 BABIP in 2015 should rise in 2016, and with that his batting average, and maybe his power, should increase as well, so he has an outside shot at 20 home runs next season.
17. Francisco Cervelli, Pirates (LY: NR)
Cervelli has a lot more value in leagues where OBP is a category, but he was pretty solid across the board in 2015, hitting .295-.370-.401 with 7 home runs, 56 runs scored and 43 RBI in 510 plate appearances. He should see full time duty behind the plate in Pittsburgh in 2016 once again, so don't hesitate to grab him if you prefer a good batting average from the catcher position.
18. Blake Swihart, Red Sox (LY: NR)
Swihart is the Red Sox catcher of the future, who hit well in the big leagues after just 150 or so plate appearances in AAA spread out over the last two seasons. In 2015, he hit .274-.319-.392 with 5 home runs, 47 runs scored, 31 RBI and 4 stolen bases in 309 plate appearances. I am not sure how much power he has, but he should put up a solid batting average, runs scored and maybe even chip in with 7-10 stolen bases, which could be the difference in a point or two in your league standings.
19. Miguel Montero, Cubs (LY: 14)
Montero put up his normal 15 home run, 50 RBI season in 2015, but that is down from his 2011- 2012 seasons where he hit 15-18 home runs, but drove in 80+ runs. Montero is now 32 years of age, and could lose some playing time to David Ross, who will retire after the 2016 season, Kyle Schwarber, who won't catch all that much, and up and coming catching prospect Willson Cabrera, who will start the season in AAA and is the Cubs catcher of the future.
20. Yadier Molina, Cardinals (LY: 7)
Molina is a better real life catcher than he is a fantasy catcher, and that changed after the 2013 season. In 2015, Molina hit .270-.310-.350 with just 4 home runs, 34 runs scored, 61 RBI and 3 stolen bases in 530 plate appearances. Gone are the days where he hit .300 with double digit home runs and 70-80 RBI. His name value exceeds his fantasy value at this point in his career.
21. J.T. Realmuto, Marlins
Michael Schwarz is profiling Realmuto later today, but for me, Realmuto is the sleeper of the catchers ranked 16-30 in our consensus catcher rankings. Last season, Realmuto hit .259-.290-.406 with 10 home runs, 49 runs scored, 47 RBI and 8 stolen bases in 467 plate appearances. Jeff Sullivan recently wrote about Realmuto, saying that his defense behind the plate, specifically his framing skills, cost his team last year. Yet, he is one of the best at throwing out would be base stealers in the game. Hi Yadi. The Marlins are moving in their fences in 2016, so Realmuto has a chance to improve upon his 10 home runs, and possibly his 8 stolen bases. Could he hit 15 home runs and steal 12-15 bases in 2016?
22. Robinson Chirinos, Rangers
23. A.J. Pierzynski, Braves
24. Jason Castro, Astros
25. James McCann, Tigers
26. Chris Iannetta, Mariners
27. John Ryan Murphy, Twins
28. Andrew Susac, Giants
29. Dioner Navarro, White Sox
30. Caleb Joseph, Orioles
The rest of the catchers ranked 22-30 are more than likely going to go undrafted in most standard mixed leagues, and are rosterable only in deeper mixed leagues, AL or NL-only leagues. Castro has hit double digit home runs in three consecutive season, but he won't hit higher than .230. Like Castro, Chorinos can reach double digits in the home run category, but comes with a low batting average. McCann has the potential to move up these rankings with a full season of at bats in Detroit's stacked lineup. Murphy moves from being a back up to Brian McCann to a starting role in Minnesota after his offseason trade to the Twins. Susac needs a trade or an injury to the best catcher in the game to be fantasy relevant, but has the power to hit double digit homers if he can garner 300 plate appearances. Navarro is the better half of the catcher platoon with Alex Avila in Chicago this season, and should put up double digit home runs and a solid batting average. He could easily out-produce his ranking here.
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