Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:


Already have an account? Log in here.


Forgot Password


2020 Offseason Catcher Rankings - Fantasy Baseball Mixed Leagues

It's never too early to start looking ahead to the next baseball season, so here we deliver our 2020 fantasy baseball rankings to those of you looking to scratch your fantasy itch. Whether you're already eliminated from fantasy football contention, or you're getting a head start on next year's keeper selections, RotoBaller has got you covered. We've assembled a collection of stout minds, including the #1 ranked expert from 2018, Nick Mariano, to help you get a jump start on your competition for the upcoming season.

With the Winter Meetings happening and free-agency starting to materialize, there will be plenty of movement with these rankings before the draft season gets into full swing. Be sure to check in frequently during the offseason as we'll have updated rankings as soon as big names begin to change places.

The catching position has already seen a lot of movement this offseason with several backstops shuffling around to new teams around the league. This spot on the diamond features the most platoon situations, so finding an everyday player for your squad can be difficult even in the deeper leagues. We'll help you sift through the tiers of our rankings to determine where the value will be at fantasy baseball's most overlooked position. With several veteran mainstays combined with young emerging prospects on our list, there's plenty to go over, so let's get into the analysis.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off. Exclusive access to our Draft Kit, premium rankings, projections, player outlooks, top prospects, dynasty rankings, 15 in-season lineup tools, and over 200 days of expert DFS research. Sign Up Now!


Catcher Tiered Ranks - 5x5 Mixed Leagues (December)

In case you missed it, our very own "Big Pick Nick" Mariano was named the #1 overall most accurate industry expert ranker for the 2018 season.

Ranking Tier Player Position Nick Nick G Riley
1 1 Gary Sanchez C 71 76 78
2 1 J.T. Realmuto C 89 71 67
3 2 Yasmani Grandal C 138 112 115
4 2 Willson Contreras C 159 171 133
5 3 Mitch Garver C 243 216 129
6 3 Salvador Perez C 233 193 177
7 3 Wilson Ramos C 265 230 156
8 4 William Smith C 208 #N/A 237
9 4 Carson Kelly C 301 298 277
10 4 Yadier Molina C 340 266 274
11 5 Christian Vazquez C/1B 347 290 271
12 5 Omar Narvaez C 434 #N/A 230
13 5 Francisco Mejia C 335 #N/A 332
14 5 Jorge Alfaro C 337 #N/A 344
15 6 James McCann C 403 #N/A 319
16 6 Sean Murphy C 379 #N/A 374
17 6 Travis D'Arnaud C/1B 420 #N/A 338
18 6 Robinson Chirinos C 418 #N/A 363
19 6 Roberto Perez C 530 #N/A 381
20 6 Buster Posey C 466 #N/A #N/A


Tier One

It was a tight race for the top-ranked catcher on our board, but Gary Sanchez prevailed after slugging a career-high 34 homers last year. A pair of IL trips couldn't stand in his way from reaching this feat as he established new bests in fly-ball rate (32.7%) and Barrel% (19.1%). The latter was the second-best mark in the league among batters with 270 batted ball events (BBE), but when Sanchez wasn't making contact, it was disastrous. The good news was he hit .047 points better than in 2018, but his .232 BA in 2019 was nothing boast-worthy. Sanchez also tumbled to a career-low in K-rate (28.0%), Chase% (33.0%), and Contact% (70.2%), all numbers well below average even for a catcher. Despite Sanchez leading our ranks, I wouldn't reach for him on draft day with these glaring holes in his swing.

J.T. Realmuto, on the other hand, is a catcher that I would pay full price for in 2020. He led the position in runs (92), RBI (83), and SB (9), all by convincing margins. Not to mention his 25 HR and .275 BA finished as top-five marks, helping him earn his second consecutive Silver Slugger. Realmuto could only measure up to just below half of Sanchez's Barrel% (8.7%), but he trailed his Exit Velocity by less than one MPH (90.3 MPH) and his Hard Hit% by less than 0.5% (40.9%). Admittingly, it will be hard for Realmuto to replicate 145 games again, but he's played at least 125 contests for five years running. The two-time All-Star has the best chance of any backstop to lead the position in all five roto categories, which provides a massive advantage over the field.


Tier Two

The White Sox landed Yasmani Grandal to a four-year pact this offseason after a career-year in his age-30 season. His 28/79/77/5/.246 roto line were all lifetime bests, with the exception of his BA finishing a tick below his .247 mark in 2017. Grandal's 153 games played were the most by a backstop since Jonathan Lucroy in 2014, so it's obvious we'll see a regression in his at-bats in 2020. He will cede work to James McCann, and it's unlikely he'll bat in the top-third of the Pale Hose lineup 75 times as he did a year ago with Milwaukee. Grandal is a near-lock button to finish as a top-five catcher, but be aware his counting stats will regress.

A couple of IL stints limited Willson Contreras to 105 games last season, but he still managed to set new bests with 24 HR and 57 runs scored. He doesn't "wow" you in any particular category, but he's sturdy across the board as he sat in the top-five in all four roto counting categories in 2019.


Tier Three

I'm more bullish than my fellow rankers on Mitch Garver for several reasons. Among batters with at least 220 BBE, his 50.0% Hard Hit% and 15.5% Barrel% were both top-10 marks, with the former leading all major league catchers. He finished only behind Sanchez in Barrel% and HR (31), but Graver was able to produce a much more respectable .273 BA in 93 games. The 28-year-old also had an elite 35.4% fly-ball rate and 47.8% Pull%, the essential ingredients for a slugger. With Jason Castro hitting free-agency, Garver will take over as the everyday backstop with newly acquired Alex Avila playing second fiddle. Garver proved he could finish as a top-five backstop in a timeshare in 2019, and he'll get even more volume in 2020 for a chance to repeat.

Salvador Perez was one of the top power bats at the position through the 2017-18 seasons, averaging a 27/55/80/1/.253 line before missing all of 2019. The six-time All-Star will slide back into the meat of the order for the Royals and could be a sneaky option in 2020 due to some recency bias.

After a late-July callup, Will Smith dominated big-league pitching clubbing 10 long balls with a .299 BA until the end of August. He failed to hit fastballs (.194 BA) in September, which slowed him down considerably with just two HR and a paltry .175 BA over the final month. Smith undoubtedly has 25-homer power, but be aware that he won't contribute a high batting average with an elevated K-rate (26.5%), and if he continues to slump against heaters.


Tier Four

Carson Kelly had a successful first full season in the majors with the Diamondbacks, but his splits paint a polarizing picture. He smoked left-handed pitching to a .356/.462/.667 slash line while struggling to keep up with righties (.203/.303/.405). Kelly also surprisingly found more success outside of Chase Field with a .294 BA and 14 HR on the road versus a .192 mark with four round-trippers at home. The 25-year-old's L/R splits are more of a concern, but not as much as his .192 BA over the final two months. Kelly helped himself by drawing the free pass more often during this stretch (16.0% BB%), but he'll have to show much more consistency in 2020 to take the next step in his career.

Through four big-league seasons, Christian Vazquez had just 10 career dingers before slugging a whopping 23 bombs and nearly doubling up his Barrel% to 6.2% in 2019. I believe he can sustain a .270 BA, but these one-off power years can be risky to chase if you don't keep your expectations in check.


Tier Five

The White Sox signing of Grandal took a considerable hit to James McCann's fantasy value after a breakout year where he hit .273 with 18 HR as the team's primary cleanup hitter. His .226 BA in the second half has some cause for concern, but barring any further lineup additions, he should slide into the lineup as the DH regularly for the South Siders. McCann makes an intriguing two-catcher league option, but don't bank on a repeat in the BA column.

In his first season as an everyday starter, Omar Narvaez produced single-catcher league value with a .278 BA and 22 HR with the Mariners in 2019. His batting average didn't surprise anyone, but few expected to see his home run total rise thanks to a 4.8° increase in launch angle and an 8% increase in FB% from 2018. Now in a friendlier home ballpark and a part of a stronger Brewers lineup, his counting stats will flourish if he can make it four seasons in a row with a .275 BA or higher.

Francisco Mejia is a player I refuse to quit on even after a disappointing season with the Padres. Inconsistent playing time led the switch-hitter to an atrocious .167/.207/.259 slash line through his first 19 games, but he impressed between IL stints from June 18 until the end of August. Mejia's .298 BA in this span was good enough for second among qualifiers as he forced the team to get him in the lineup more often. Mejia doesn't measure up defensively to teammate Austin Hedges, but the Padres can't afford to play his .176/.252/.311 slash line any longer. The sooner the Padres realize this, the sooner Mejia will become a top-10 player at the position.


Tier Six

It appears the Athletics are handing the job behind the plate to Sean Murphy after non-tendering Josh Phegley this offseason. He held his own as a 24-year-old rookie hitting .245 with four big flies, but his glove is the main reason he's baseball's number four catching prospect. The A's will likely add a veteran backstop before the 2020 season begins, but Murphy should put up respectable fantasy numbers that are playable in two-catcher formats.

Travis d'Arnaud had a resurgent year with the Rays in 2019, finishing with 16 HR, 52 R, and 69 RBI in 103 games. The 30-year-old received most of his ABs in the top-third of the Tampa Bay batting order, but figures to slide down to the bottom-third of the Braves lineup in 2020. Less volume paired with ongoing health concerns makes d'Arnaud a risky pick even at a low cost.

More 2020 Fantasy Baseball Advice

More Recent Articles


2020 Starting Pitcher Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Points leagues may seem like a slight variation from traditional 5x5 category scoring leagues but you must approach draft day with a very different strategy if you wish to truly compete. All preseason long, RotoBaller has you covered with the latest rankings for all fantasy baseball league types. Here we present our points league rankings... Read More

Second-Half Improvements: Buy Into These Starting Pitchers

The second half of the season is always put under a microscope for starting pitchers. Fantasy players have a love for the second half of the season, as the belief is that pitchers who take a step forward could carry over that success the next season and perhaps even build upon it. But, as we... Read More

How to Attack RP in SV+HLD Leagues

No position has seen as much evolution in recent seasons as the relief pitcher. Gone are the days where starters were expected to go seven innings as most teams have embraced the idea of "super-bullpening" and try to fit as many pitchers that can throw 95+ MPH into their bullpen as they can. Many fantasy... Read More

Using Sabermetrics for Fantasy Baseball: Pitch Info

One of the most fundamental questions in fantasy sports is if a player's current performance is sustainable. More than any other sport, baseball has a slew of statistical measures that can be dissected in numerous ways to analyze player performance. Pitch Info is a publicly-available pitch tracking system that provides a lot of different data to... Read More

2020 Fantasy Baseball Staff Rankings

Below you will find RotoBaller's 2020 fantasy baseball rankings, tiers and auction dollar values for the 2020 MLB season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Mixed, Head-to-Head, Points, AL/NL Only, Two-Catcher Top 2020 prospects, Dynasty leagues, Keeper values Export the rankings easily... Read More

Mock Draft Review: Best Late-Round Targets

Last week, some members of the RotoBaller staff completed a 12-team mock draft for standard 5x5 format. After the draft, we each broke down our strategy and some of our favorite picks, which can be found here. However, I want to take a closer look at one portion of the draft in particular. Since we know that... Read More

Faster and Furious: Pitchers with Rising Velocity/Performance

Welcome fantasy baseball players! I’m sure that you, like me, are anxiously counting down the days until your drafts and Opening Day. While the fantasy season may not start for several weeks, there are plenty of things we can do to start preparing for a successful season. One of those things is to take a good... Read More

James Karinchak Is A Relief Pitcher To Know in 2020

One of the lesser-known players that intrigues me for the 2020 MLB season is Indians relief pitcher James Karinchak. The former Bryant Bulldog was drafted by Cleveland in the ninth round in the 2017 draft and went on to have one of the most outrageous statistical seasons in minor league baseball history. As someone who... Read More

2020 Relief Pitcher Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Often regarded as an inferior fantasy baseball format, points leagues offer a different style of boasting over your friends or coworkers similar to that of fantasy football. These setups are typically head-to-head formats for a one-week stretch where the player with the most points gets a win. Easy right? While it's true that roster construction... Read More

2019 Barrel Breakouts: Who's For Real and Who's Next?

As pitchers and catchers get even closer to reporting and most fantasy leagues prepare for their drafts, everybody is looking for a leg up on the competition - a way to get in on a guy before everybody else does. In this article, we're going to look for a way to identify hitters who improved... Read More

Using Sabermetrics for Fantasy Baseball: Pitcher BABIP

While FIP is a useful tool to predict a pitcher's future ERA performance, fantasy owners should remember that ERA, not FIP, is what really matters in most formats. This means that we are interested in the "luck" that separates the two statistics. While some of this luck is unpredictable, we can and should predict some... Read More

Second Year Player Preview: Fantasy Baseball 2020 ADP Analysis

Host Anthony Aniano of RotoBaller Radio discuss the 2020 fantasy baseball season and keeps you updated with all the latest news and analysis Be sure to tune into RotoBaller Radio on SiriusXM (channel Sirius 210, XM 87) - every weekday morning between 6-7 AM ET, every weekday afternoon from 1-2 PM ET, Saturday nights from 9-11 PM ET... Read More

2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers - Jorge Alfaro

Miami Marlins catcher Jorge Alfaro was a key piece in the J.T. Realmuto trade that was executed before the 2019 season. The Marlins have high hopes for Alfaro and he continued his development in 2019 by slashing .262/.312/.425 with 18 HR, 57 RBI, 44 R, and 22 BB. The overall numbers may not seem all that... Read More

2020 Shortstop Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Points leagues may seem like a slight variation from traditional 5x5 category scoring leagues but you must approach draft day with a different strategy if you wish to truly compete. Rankings themselves are a different beast altogether, as category specialists like Mallex Smith and Dee Gordon (stolen bases), Kyle Schwarber and Franmil Reyes (home runs),... Read More

2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers – Victor Reyes

With a 457 ADP in 2020 NFBC leagues, Detroit Tigers outfielder Victor Reyes is an afterthought in all but the deepest leagues.  Perhaps the 25-year-old shouldn't be, though, as Reyes was quietly solid in 2019, slashing .304/.336/.431 in 292 plate-appearances, with three home runs and nine stolen bases. Having made stops in Arizona and the... Read More

More Recent Articles


RB Opportunity Share and Impact (AFC South & West): 2019 Review

We roll on with coverage of each of the eight NFL divisions, discussing the teams that are part of them and the running backs that were part of those teams in 2019. To present those teams and players I use a set of easy-to-read charts: treemaps. The graphics will hold all of the players of... Read More

Dynasty Price Check - Anthony Miller

Many of you have already begun planning and building your 2020 rosters. This includes best-ball owners who have assembled teams in that popular format. A number of owners in redraft leagues are inspecting the early rankings, while those of you who are involved in dynasty leagues have continued your process of relentless roster evaluation. As the... Read More

Is Lamar Jackson Worth a First Round Pick?

RotoBaller fantasy football analysts Pierre Camus and Chris Mangano discuss the idea of taking Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson in the first round of 2020 fantasy football redraft leagues. Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us on iTunes and BlogTalkRadio as well! Be sure... Read More

Why Lamar Jackson Should Be a First-Round Pick in 2020

Sometimes I like to make noise and some headlines if I can. That is why I host shows six days a week on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio representing RotoBaller. If I can get people buzzing about a topic, calling in or responding on social media with passion and vigor, I am having fun. But whenever I... Read More

Dynasty Price Check - Darren Waller

Many of you have already launched into the planning process for your 2020 rosters. This includes best-ball owners who have embraced the opportunity to draft in that popular format. A number of owners in redraft leagues are also monitoring the early rankings, while those of you who are involved in dynasty leagues have continued a pace of... Read More

Biggest Breakouts of 2019: Tight End

There were a lot of fantasy football busts at the tight end position in 2019, but there were also a lot of breakout stars. The 2018 season saw Philadelphia’s Zach Ertz break the NFL record for most receptions in a season by a tight end, while San Francisco’s George Kittle broke the record for most... Read More

Dynasty Price Check - Courtland Sutton

With the conclusion of Super Bowl LIV, football season is over for many people. But for anyone that plays in a dynasty fantasy football league, the season is never over. For the fantasy addicts out there, now is the time to start preparing. In today's column, we will take a look at wide receiver Courtland... Read More

Dynasty Price Check - Josh Allen

The NFL offseason has arrived, which means that it's time for us to go all-in on dynasty mode. The time between the Super Bowl and the NFL Draft is the time for dynasty players to make some moves and try to make their team better -- or worse, if you're rebuilding and looking for draft... Read More

RB Opportunity Share and Impact (NFC East & North)

With the season over and real-life free agency and April's NFL draft ahead of us, it's time to look at how each team split their targets and carries (both of them combined in what is called opportunities; sometimes it's receptions instead of targets, but I wanted to look at the overall volume and total chances instead)... Read More

Odell Beckham - Dynasty Buy or Sell?

Pierre Camus and Chris Mangano discuss the dynasty value of Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.. Will he bounce back in 2020 to return WR1 fantasy football value or is he no longer an elite receiver? Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us... Read More

David Johnson - Dynasty Buy or Sell?

Pierre Camus and Chris Mangano discuss the fantasy football value of Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson in dynasty leagues. Is it best to get something in return for him while you can or try to buy-low in hopes of a rebound season? Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all... Read More

Super Futures: Early 2020 Fantasy Outlooks for Chiefs and 49ers

Now that the Super Bowl is over, fantasy football purists are already looking ahead to the NFL Draft and next season. The Chiefs proved that a high-flying offense that boosted many teams to fantasy championships could also win a Super Bowl of its own. The 49ers fell short, but earning an NFC Championship was an... Read More