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Entries in buster posey (14)

Sunday
Feb172013

Top 16 Fantasy Baseball Catchers

In the past the catcher position has been the vagabond of all my fantasy teams. In an attempt to achieve optimal fantasy value from the offensively deficient position I would scour the waiver wire for the catcher with the best matchup for the upcoming week. But those days are gone. There are a lot of players who are currently being drafted outside the top five could provide top five fantasy production.

Fantasy owners in one catcher 10-12 mixed league can easily wait until the end of the draft and find fantasy goodness. If you’re in a two catcher 10-12 mixed league waiting until the end of the draft is another viable strategy, but I recommend trying to get two in the top 16 outlined below. Even though the position is deep, most of the players provide statistical silos, providing above average production in one or two categories. Some players provide a lot of pop but will struggle to provide batting average while some players will provide a lot of runs and a high batting average with no power.

  1. Buster Posey, SF
  2. Yadier Molina, STL
  3. Wilin Rosario, COL
  4. Joe Mauer, MIN
  5. Matt Wieters, BAL
  6. Miguel Montero, ARZ
  7. Carlos Santana, CLE
  8. Salvador Perez, KC
  9. Jonathan Lucroy, MIL
  10. Victor Martinez, DET
  11. Alex Avila, DET
  12. Brian McCann, ATL
  13. Jesus Montero, SEA
  14. A.J. Pierzynski, TEX
  15. John Jaso, OAK
  16. Welington Castillo, CHC

Honorable Mention: Ryan Doumit, Travis d’Arnaud, Carlos Ruiz

*If Yasmani Grandal didn’t start the year with a 50 game suspension he would have ranked eleventh overall.

Additional Information:

  1. Posey is the best catcher in the game. However, he’s extremely likely to regress in 2013. For more detailed information check out Posey’s player profile.
  2. What’s not to love? As Molina has matured he’s grown into power. This is evidenced by his home run totals increasing year-over-year. Don’t overlook the 6-10 steals he provides. It may not seem like a lot in the team aggregate, but it provides more flexibility with their roster construction.
  3. Rosario had the quietest 28 HRs of anyone in baseball last year. Even though he’s helped greatly by Coors, his short swing will provide enough contact to hit for a solid average on the road. If he plays a full year 20 home runs is his floor.
  4. With his injury concerns I don’t see Mauer spending any more than 80-90 games behind the plate, which is great. I have more confidence that he will stay healthy playing fewer games behind the plate.
  5. Almost guarantee for 18+ home runs with a .255 average. Wieters’ batting average ceiling is limited because when he bats left handed he’s usually facing a shift. One of these years he’s going to have a breakout year, I just do not know when. If fantasy owners want to go the extra dollar or grab him a round early, it’s understandable.
  6. Montero routinely hits fourth and fifth in the lineup, almost guaranteeing he’ll bat with runners on base. He had the fourth most plate appearances with runners on base among catchers.
  7. Santana’s horrible May and June masked what could have been a better year than his 2011 campaign. He cut down on the strikeouts, which provides optimism he can return to the .260 batting average he hit in 2010. He’s a notorious slow starter, which makes a great buy low candidate in June.
  8. Last year was the second year in a row Perez put up solid numbers, albeit in small sample sizes, and is still not talked about in the main stream media. I believe part of this is due to the small, team friendly five-year, $7 million contract he signed a year ago. He’s a solid contact hitter with gap power that will allow him to hit .295 and 11-14 home runs.
  9. Lucroy has a really good approach at the plate; hardly swinging at pitches out of the zone. I doubt he’ll hit .320 again, but he should hit .285 with 12-15 home runs.
  10. Martinez only hit 12 home runs in 2011, which is a little troubling. However, he’s expected to bat fifth, behind Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder so he’ll have a lot of run producing opportunities. Make sure he qualifies at catcher. CBS for example only counts him as a DH.
  11. The fantasy darling two years ago had big drop in production last year. Perhaps the cause for Avila’s sub-par year was a troubled left knee? Avila is a great buy low candidate; if you can grab him towards the end of the draft you should.
  12. In October McCann had surgery on his right shoulder, which could have dramatically impacted his offense last year. Historically he’s hit in the middle of the order, but with the recent additions to the team, he’ll likely bat sixth of seventh, reducing his RBI and run opportunities.
  13. Safeco Field suppressed his fantasy output last year. Montero hit .295 on the road compared to only .227 at home. He will enter the season as the everyday catcher, which hurts his fantasy value. Usually it takes longer for catching prospects to develop their hitting because more time is allocated to preparing defensively for each individual game than any other position player.
  14. Can Pierzynski repeat his 2012 numbers? Very unlikely. Even though he’s moving to a more hitter friendly ballpark, the 2012 season screams outlier. These are his home run totals since 2005: 18, 16, 14, 13, 13, 9, 8, and 27. Which number looks out place?
  15. It’s only a matter of time Jaso’s career .359 OBP is batting leadoff or second for the Athletics. If he does he could score 80+ runs with a decent average.
  16. I love Castillo. I wouldn’t be surprised if he hits 20 home runs this year. For a more detailed analysis check out Castillo’s player profile.

 

Wednesday
Feb132013

The Fantasy Baseball Diary: Buster Posey

Buster Posey

Bats: R | Age: 26 | Team: Giants | Position: C | ADP: 1 (13)

 

Year

LVL

AGE

PA

HR

R

RBI

SB/CS

SO%

BB%

AVG

OBP

SLG

OPS

BABIP

HR/FB

2010

MLB

23

443

18

58

67

0/2

12.4%

6.8%

.305

.357

.505

.862

.315

16.1%

2011

MLB

24

185

4

17

21

3/0

16.2%

9.7%

.284

.368

.389

.757

.326

10.0%

2012

MLB

25

610

24

78

103

1/1

15.7%

11.3%

.336

.408

.549

.957

.368

16.8%

 

Can Posey repeat his 2012 MVP season?

Buster Posey's mantle already has a MVP and two World Series Rings; pretty impressive for any player, let alone someone whose only been in the big leagues for three seasons. To say anything other than he’s the best catcher in the game (fantasy or real life) would be crazy.

 

However, I am surprised that he has a current ADP (average draft position) of 13 at Mock Draft Central; that’s right, a catcher is being taken 13th ahead of players like Prince Fielder, Giancarlo Stanton, Troy Tulowitzki and Clayton Kershaw. Proponents of taking Posey that high say the lack of offensive depth at the catcher position makes his production even more valuable. That’s true for the 2012 season, but as fantasy owners we’re drafting players on what they will do in 2013. All the underlying stats last year suggest a regression is coming. During the second half of the season he had a .385 batting average; there’s no way that’s going to happen again. Also, the .336 batting average was aided by an extremely high.368 BABIP (batting average on balls in play). Before 2012, his career BABIP in the big leagues was .314. For additional context, according to Fan Graphs, an average BABIP is between .290-.310.

 

Another reason for drafting Posey so high is the replacement level value at catcher is the lowest for any position; basically, the value a free agent provides is a lot less than a free agent outfielder. However, for the first time in a long time, the catcher slot is pretty deep.

 

There are 17 catchers I would be happy with on my team. For two-catcher leagues taking Posey 13th overall would make more sense, but would still be too high because catchers get hurt and wear down more often than other position, thereby making them riskier.

 

Bottom line

Posey is my number one rated catcher and I have him ranked 48th overall. Owners should draft him with the expectation of him repeating the numbers he posted the first half of 2012 .289/.362/.458 rather than the .385/.456/.646 numbers in the second half.

 

Friday
Oct122012

Buster Posey, Before and after the break

What was the Buster Posey difference after the All-Star break?

The numbers only tell part of the story

SplitABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOBAOBPSLGOPS
1st Half 273 35 79 16 0 10 43 32 50 .289 .362 .458 .820
2nd Half 257 43 99 23 1 14 60 37 46 .385 .456 .646 1.102
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Original Table
Generated 10/12/2012. 

When you look inside Posey's performance you need to look at the outer-half of the plate.

Prior to the break, Posey hit .220, with a .331 OBP, .303 slugging, .634 OPS, strike out rate of 18.5%:

After the break, Posey hit .353, with a .453 OBP, .617 slugging, 1.069 OPS, strike out rate of 11.3%:

Posey had seven extra-base hits on pitches on the outer-half before the break and 20 XBH after the break.

He had six opposite field hits on pitches on the outer-half before the break and 14 after the break.