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Will Smith
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
Strike Zone

2020 Catcher Rankings

by Matthew Pouliot
Updated On: July 17, 2019, 5:10 am ET

I usually do this over the All-Star break, but time didn’t allow for it last week. So here now are my very, very preliminary 2020 player rankings. I’ve done my best to list players where they’ll be eligible next year, and the free agents-to-be are listed without teams. Players with options for next year are still listed with their current teams if those options have a legitimate chance of being exercised. Those players are noted with asterisks.

Along with the position rankings is a top 300 list for 2020. Click to see other preliminary 2020 rankings:

Top 300 | SP | RP | OF | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | C | DH

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2020 Catcher Rankings

 CatcherTeam2019July
1Gary SanchezYankees11
2J.T. RealmutoPhillies22
3Willson ContrerasCubs33
4Yasmani GrandalBrewers*54
5Francisco MejiaPadres109
6Buster PoseyGiants45
7Mitch GarverTwins298
8Danny JansenBlue Jays810
9Wilson RamosMets77
10Salvador PerezRoyalsNRNR
11Will SmithDodgers7242
12Jorge AlfaroMarlins1411
13Yadier MolinaCardinals66
14Carson KellyDiamondbacks2816
15Chance SiscoOrioles3519
16Christian VazquezRed Sox2212
17Willians AstudilloTwins1927
18Mike ZuninoRays1517
19Austin BarnesDodgers914
20Omar NarvaezMariners2613
21Robinson Chirinos 3215
22Welington CastilloWhite Sox*1133
23Sean MurphyAthletics3149
24Tyler FlowersBraves*2025
25Kurt SuzukiNationals2521
26James McCannWhite Sox5218
27Travis d'Arnaud 3832
28Yan GomesNationals*1824
29Isiah Kiner-FalefaRangers1340
30Francisco Cervelli 1726
31Tony WoltersRockies5038
32Austin HedgesPadres2331
33Tucker BarnhartReds2147
34Roberto PerezIndians4228
35Andrew KniznerCardinals79NR
36Josh PhegleyAthletics7429
37Jonathan Lucroy 3422
38Chris IannettaRockies*1220
39Jason Castro 3945
40Brian McCann 3723
41Elias DiazPirates3030
42Tom MurphyMariners4544
43Jake RogersTigers90NR
44Keibert RuizDodgers92NR
45Grayson GreinerTigers2737
46Pedro SeverinoOrioles5535
47John HicksTigers2434
48Victor CaratiniCubs4750
49Zack CollinsWhite Sox70NR
50Joey BartGiantsNRNR
51Manny PinaBrewers46NR
52Kevan SmithAngels51NR
53Aramis GarciaGiants66 1BNR
54Austin AllenPadres85NR
55Eric HaaseIndians81NR
56Russell Martin 4339
57Matt Wieters 67NR
58Curt CasaliReds5946
59Alex JacksonBravesNRNR
60Kevin PlaweckiIndians3651

 

  • There isn’t much movement at the top here, but I am optimistic enough that the Padres will resolve their catching situation to put Francisco Mejia in the top five. Of course, it would be nice if Mejia would start to hit relatively soon. It’s going to happen, but until it does, the Padres will always have reason to go back to the defensively superior Austin Hedges. I still wonder if the Padres might not trade Mejia at some point and pair Austin Allen with Hedges.
  • With both of their young catchers in demand, the Dodgers are facing a decision on whether to trade Will Smith or Keibert Ruiz this month. Ruiz has been a disappointment as a Double-A repeater, hitting .249/.329/.326 to date, but he’s just turning 21 this month and he still seems like an excellent bet for the long term. The Dodgers can keep Smith and pair him with Austin Barnes next year if they’re confident enough in his glove. For fantasy purposes I’d like to see Smith as a true starter somewhere else; he’d likely move into the top eight here if that happened.
  • The free agent class is led by Yasmani Grandal, who seems likely to decline his half of a $16 million mutual option. Welington Castillo also figures to join the list, and Yan Gomes seems increasingly likely to have his $9 million option declined. Travis d’Arnaud is making a real push to be looked at as a starter this winter, but he still doesn’t seem like a very good bet to hold up physically.
Matthew Pouliot

Matthew Pouliot is the Executive Editor of NBC Sports Edge and has been doing the site's baseball projections for the last 10 years. Follow him on Twitter @matthewpouliot.