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Here, friend, are some catchers that I will be targeting at my 2011 fantasy drafts after the top options are gone.  I’m not going to get into the strategy of punting catchers.  Been there, half-drunkenly wrote that.  Click on the player’s name where applicable to read more and see their 2011 projections.  This is a (legal-in-most-countries) supplement to the top 20 catchers of 2011 fantasy baseball.  Now, guys (and three girl readers), I am not saying avoid catchers like Napoli, Geovany Soto, et al (which is not the Israeli airline).  To get on this list, you need to be drafted later than 200 overall.  And, to preemptively answer at least seven comments, yes, I will go around the entire infield, outfield and pitchers to target very late.  Anyway, here’s some catchers to target for 2011 fantasy baseball:

J.P. Arencibia – He’s Napoli 100 picks later.  Yes, Napoli has graduated to being a guy other Hacky McHackstein catchers strive to be.

Chris Iannetta – I wrote a sleeper post for Iannetta in 2009.  He, um, yeah… I wrote a sleeper post for Iannetta in 2010.  Never posted it because before I had a chance Miguel Olivo ended up there.  Maybe I’ll release it one day on the B-side of my cassette single, ‘Perting Ain’t Easy.  I didn’t want to write a sleeper post for Iannetta this year because I’m superstitious and while I was writing this post I was eating fried chicken while having sex with Margo Adams.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia – On one hand, I’ve been pleasantly surprised Salty’s ADP hasn’t been crazy inflated because he’s starting for the Red Sox.  But since I’m never happy, I’m a little sad to see people not embracing Salty so late in drafts.  He’s going on average 343th in drafts.  He’s on the Red Sox and he’s starting.  Dubya tee eff, people.  Punt catcher, draft Salty.  Oh, and if you’re worried about Varitek.  He hasn’t been productive in five years.  2005 called and they said go ahead and draft Salty.

Russell Martin – It hurt me soul, Lupe Fiasco, to tell you to draft Martin, but on the Yankees?  To quote my dead Jewish grandmother, you could do worse.

Jonathan Lucroy – I almost ranked him in the top 20 catchers, but I’m having a hard time figuring out his best case scenario.  A fair Russell Martin year seems to be the top of his ceiling.  I.e., 10 homers and 6 steals.  It’s a’ight.  Lucroy does have a starting job and is worth a really cheap gamble on in NL-Only leagues or very deep mixed ones.

Matt Wieters – He doesn’t fall into the ‘after 200’ cutoff, but it’s my blog, I do what I do.  He’s ranked at 189 at ESPN.  That’s bizz-onkers.  I wish I could remember where they ranked him last year but I’m guessing in the 70s.  For all of you who just started playing fantasy, or if Liam Neeson from Unknown is reading this, Wieters was Posey during last year’s preseason.  He was a can’t miss prospect.  Well, I guess ESPN thinks he’s over-the-hill.  At 24 years old.  Want your head to spin further?  They gave Wieters the projections of 54/19/72/.280.  Last year, Posey put up the line of 58/18/67/.305 and ranked 3rd for all of catchers.  According to them!  Yes, they say Wieters will put up a line that is pretty much equal to what their third best catcher did last year and rank him 189.  Okay, wanna really get crazy?  They have Posey’s 2011 projections down for 70/21/78/.291/1 and ranked 56th overall.  So even if you believe what they say, 133 picks later you can have two less homers and some counting stats.  Yes, please and thank you.

  1. NewBVick says:

    Can’t really disagree with much. I’d only say that the J.P. and Salty projections seem more best case scenario. Low risk/high reward considering thier ADP.

  2. emporersmonkey says:

    I hope wherever Kenji Johjima is right now, he’s suffering. Badly.

  3. Tad Lucky says:

    Is Margo Adams a sleeper slump buster?

  4. Chunk says:

    4 (four!) catchers on the Yankees ranked above the highest ranked Red Sox catcher over at Yahoo. No comprendo.

  5. Tony says:

    weiters is good value on yahoo and espn, its kinda wild, they overrated him the past couple years, now they’re underrating him….

  6. Wilsonian says:

    Funny thing is, in my 16 Team H2H draft that’s been going on since the middle of January is on pick #343. Salty is still on the board. Granted only one team needs a catcher, but still, that kind of makes Grey’s point for him.

  7. I don’t worry about Varitek. I worry about Francona’s allegiance to the old man. I could see Vatirek getting 2-3 starts a week. Boooo.

  8. Wilsonian says:

    @Wilsonian: especially where guys like Kurt Suzuki, Yadier and John Buck were taken 100-150 picks ago.

  9. JustMatt says:

    @Grey – Rudy says you’re doing a 14-team MLB draft for Yahoo Roto Arcade today (I’m assuming this fullfills some form of owed community service). Any chance this is being posted somewhere we can follow along live?

  10. carlos marmLOL says:

    i’m in a BB and OPS league targeting Santana.. if he can be had cheap. but lately i’ve been wondering is Catcher deep this year? Same three blue chips, Posey and Santana in the wings, tons of value plays: Ianetta, Wieters, Arencibia, and more. C in 2011 isn’t deep.. but I don’t remember so many options in past years.

  11. JustMatt says:

    @Grey – also, please represent. Not sure who you consider your peers or if you’re following the KBAD draft on KFFL but the perts are getting their behinds kicked by USA Today’s, Mr. Core Four (aka – strikeouts are good <— thanks steve). Gardner picked up Ryan Howard with the 26th pick in the 3rd round after Harold Nichols of Baseball HQ took Yuuuuuk with the 20th pick in the 2nd round. I'm not saying I love Halladay at 22 but I'll go to war to Hanley, Halladay and Howard as my top 3 any day of the week. I'm confused, who are the real perts and who are the pretenders?

  12. kampy1 says:

    Please make your pages easier to print out. Like your commentary but you just killed my printer.

  13. Frank Rizzo says:

    Playing in a 10 team, one C, Yahoo league, I probably won’t need to worry about grabbing one of the late guys. However, if everything goes wrong I’m grabbing Salty in the last round.

    In Yahoo mock drafts I’ve been getting Weiters in the 10-12 round. If I miss out on him I can easily enough get Napoli or Montero in the 15th round. I’m not too worried about C, and I think a healthy Montero for the year could be good.

    The only way I get one of the top C’s is if McCann falls to me in the 6th or 7th round, which I doubt will happen.

  14. Frank Rizzo says:

    Uhoh. Cardinals sending Wainwright back to St Louis because of a cartilage issue in his right elbow. Roto just updated that he could very well need Tommy John surgery.

  15. Benny says:

    Grey- not that anyone goes to Sports Illustrated for fantasy rankings, but their top 300 might be the most laughable thing I’ve ever seen. For example: McCutchen, Hayward an J. Upton are ranked near 80 overall – behind guys like Markakis. Oh and Jay Bruce is ranked behind Aubrey Huff. It’s madness.

  16. Eddy says:

    Wow, is it me or are players dropping like flies this spring training?

    Liriano, Wainy and Padilla are among players who have shown up and immediately felt pain.

    Gives me the impression that they haven’t gotten off their couch since they sat down to watch the World Series!

    It’s bittersweet to hear about Wainy. One side of the coin, he’s not a pitcher I targeted because he went too early. On another side, that means Kershaw moves up just one more spot (sad emoticon).

    Hopefully he becomes cheap again in 2012.

  17. A Hill O' Beans says:

    @Frank Rizzo: OUCH! Good thing I don’t draft pitchers early enough to have him on the couple teams I’ve already drafted…

  18. Eddy says:


    Oh my. I think they take the cake. Makes me wonder why I follow that schmuck Jon Heyman on Twitter.

  19. Tom says:

    Grey with adam wainwright prob not playing this season would it be smart to take him in a late keeper round and stash him as a keeper for next year – same with johan santana?

  20. Wilsonian says:

    @Frank Rizzo: that’s definitely never a good sign…especially if he’s going to make a trip from STL to ‘Bama to see the good old Dr. Freeze.

  21. Tony says:

    @Frank Rizzo: really? dammit, he’s the one SP i wanted to take this year… x’ing him off my list now, thank god im not doing an early draft like some people.

  22. Ian says:

    haha, who else googled “fried chicken and Margo Adams”? Gotta love wikipedia!

  23. Wilsonian says:

    @Ian: ha, I just did. The question remains: is Grey really Wade Boggs?

  24. GopherDay says:

    Ugh…what is this crap about Wainwright???? I traded for him this off season in my dynasty league!!!

    CURSE YOU!!!!

  25. papasmurf says:

    I am drafting catcher last this year. Woo-ieee meee doggies.

  26. With Waino down, I guess I have one less keeper to choose from. Bummer.

  27. JustMatt says:

    @Benny – did you miss the big off-season trade? SI picked up baseball fantasy expert Eric Mack from CBS Sports. Mack used to create all of CBS’ rankings and auction values. Look for him to join ESPN next year!

  28. mr baseball says:

    MLB:Wainwright may need Tommy John surgery

    I can’t get myself to read this story

  29. JustMatt says:

    @Grey – I know I’m beating a dead horse here but I thought Baseball HQ are some of the good guys. They went Crawford, Youk, Rollins and Bautista in the first four rounds of KBAD. They then apparently punted Wins and Ks as their only SPs are Kuroda, Bumgarner, Cueto, Pineiro and Pineda. I’m pretty sure this is the worst team I’ve ever seen assembled.

  30. royce! says:

    Almost all these guys have been available at the end of every mock I’ve done so far, which is awesome. Also awesome, for me at least, is that ESPN has Kurt Suzuki (of the .669 2010 OPS) ranked higher than all of them save Wieters.

    Assuming that your readers follow your C advice, the RCL drafts will be real wonky. Who will win the battle to see who can hold out longer?! I can’t wait to find out!

  31. mr baseball says:

    always look on the bright side of life – Wainwright would have been drafted way before I had interest in him – Makes you think – Maybe you are way better off drafting hitters and spending less on your starters

  32. royce! says:

    @JustMatt: Wow, Crawford at 5 is one thing, but how can someone assert that he’s a lock for a 50+ SB season when he stole 47 last year? And 25+ HR upside? For someone who’s never hit even 20? I think that pick and it’s justification is all you need to know about his team, but it only gets worse. Rollins at 29.

    Maybe he’s being contrarian to make a point? Not sure what the point is, but I sure hope that’s the case.

  33. Denys says:

    Wainwrong just busted his elbow… this is why you don’t draft early, someone’s 3rd or 4th Rd pick is probably headed to Dr. Freeze.

  34. Tom Thumb says:

    Chris Iannetta for President!

  35. JustMatt says:

    @Royce: thanks for the back up. i’m losing it here. I understand that ESPN and Yahoo experts are jokes but I thought Ron Shandler’s boys invented fantasy baseball.
    @Grey: is this some uber contrarian strategy us mortals have yet to comprehend or has the HQ shop gone Weekend at Bernie’s?

  36. GopherDay says:

    @Denys: Someone’s ace of a team, you mean? Oh well, I still have Kershaw and Gallardo, but dang it hurts!

  37. royce! says:

    Yesterday afternoon I was going to mock draft at ESPN but had to do work instead so I autodrafted this team:

    C-Arencibia (283)
    1B- Howard (30)
    2b-Kinsler (43)
    3B- Longoria (6)
    SS- Alcides Escobar (187)
    MI-Espinosa (294)
    CI-Pedro Alvarez (126)
    OF- Holliday (19)
    OF- Pence (54)
    OF-Bruce (67)
    OF-Krispie (91)
    OF-Adam Jones (115)
    UTIL- Manny (198)

    P-Gallardo (78)
    P-Broxton (102)
    P-Dan Hudson (139)
    P-Chris Perez (150)
    P-Chacin (163)
    P-Kennedy (211)
    P-Shields (222)
    P-De La Rosa (259)
    P-E. Jackson (270)
    BN-Snider (174)
    BN-Kubel (235)
    BN-Smoak (246)

    I like this team, though it seems to have a few holes: risk of low AVG with Krispie, Bruce, Kinsler, Howard. Likely not enough steals. Risky SPs, with likely high WHIP. And should’ve grabbed a RP or two late instead of Smoak or Kubel.

    All of that said, if I draft anything near this team in the RCL, it would be appropriate to emit a comically menacing laugh, right?

  38. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Tad Lucky: Yup

    @Wilsonian: Yup

    @Mr. Punch: Napoli missed 2-3 games a week and was still the sixth best catcher last year.

    @JustMatt: I’ll post a recap in a the coming days (week or so maybe).

    @carlos marmLOL: There are always late options.

    @JustMatt: Good question.

    @kampy1: Sorry

    @Frank Rizzo: You’re taking Wieters before Napoli? Are drafting in a DeLorean and drafting for 2010?

    @Frank Rizzo: Whoa… Yikes

    @Benny: I didn’t know they had rankings.

    @Tom: No, don’t bother with that.

    @Ian: Ha

    @papasmurf: Ha

    @JustMatt: Sorry, you seem very saddened by this.

    @royce!: Last round?

    @mr baseball: True

    @Denys: Yup

    @Tom Thumb: Ha

    @royce!: Muahahaha… I agree with what you said about the team.

  39. Frank Rizzo says:

    @Grey: Ouch Grey. Hurtful words about catchers. According to your numbers, Wieters/Napoli is pretty close and I was thinking to choose Wieters between the 2 based on potential. We know what Napoli will do but Wieters still has the pedigree to be a superstar, doesn’t he?

    So you’re telling me Napoli is the obvious choice between the 2?

  40. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Frank Rizzo: I was reacting more to the fact I haven’t seen Wieters go before Napoli in any drafts this year, so there’s no reason for you to take them in that order. I do like Wieters as my rankings and this post say.

  41. Frank Rizzo says:

    @Grey: Yahoo Mock Draft ADP’s. Wieters ADP is round 10.7, Soto 12.4, Napoli 12.8, and Montero 15.0. I thought that was a solid order since Napoli’s playing time is in question and Wieters could be the most valuable guy based on his current ADP and potential.

  42. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Frank Rizzo: I stand corrected then, only was looking at ESPN and MDC.

  43. GTS says:

    Would you rather keep Krispie at $8 or Werth at $15? 12 team mixed H2H 6×5

  44. GopherDay says:

    @GTS: He has Krispie ranked higher in his OF post, plus he’s cheaper. So Krispie.

  45. 101 MPH says:

    Grey, I hate to post off topic here, but I’m hoping you might be able to help me out of a jam.

    I had Adam Wainwright pegged as my fifth and final keeper in a ten team mixed (snake draft) roto league. With the news of Tommy John surgery, I need to decide on my new fifth keeper.

    My current keepers are as follows:

    1) David Wright
    2) Adrian Gonzalez
    3) Matt Kemp
    4) Ryan Zimmerman

    I have a number of options for the fifth spot, but they’re all rated fairly closely together. From a strategy standpoint, which of the following options makes the most sense to you:

    – Dan Uggla
    – Jimmy Rollins
    – Andre Ethier
    – Ubaldo Jimenez
    – Cole Hamels

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  46. Mr2Bits says:

    Grey : Just traded for Youk in my keeper league. He gets my 14th round pick, I get Youk at a 16 round keeper value going forward. With that said, which one of these players should I lose to add him to my keepers roster?

    Roy Halladay (Phi – SP) – 1 drafted 1.01 2010
    Robinson Canó (NYY – 2B)- 2 drafted 2.10 2010
    Víctor Martínez (Bos – C,1B) – 6 keeper 2010
    Josh Hamilton(Tex – OF) – 8 keeper 2010
    Chris Young (Ari – OF) – FA(Round 24)
    Corey Hart (Mil – OF) – FA(Round 24)
    José Bautista (Tor – 3B,OF) – FA(Round 24)
    Neftali Feliz (Tex – RP) – FA(Round 24)

    10 team league. Only keep 8

  47. Eddy says:

    @101 MPH:

    He’ll tell you Dan Uggla. In a ten-team league, SP and OF are easy to replace.

  48. Tony says:

    @101 MPH: id go Uggla too. There’s not a pitcher you have thats going to replace wainy, and only maybe 2-3 in all of baseball.

  49. Hans says:

    Would you trade wainwright for strasburg in a keeper league, if Wainwright does have tommy john surgery?

  50. Gambler says:

    Do you like Posada, who ESPN has ranked outside the top 300 and barely above Arencibia? Is he ranked this low because he might lose catcher status or because he is so damn old?

  51. Tom Thumb says:

    I remember Wainy being on the 20 Risky pitchers list last year. I think the only thing that held off the injury a year is that he used his CB more and his slider less last year. Still, hurts for keeper owners or those that did early drafts. Just goes to show you that Injury Risk is just an extra cat to consider.

  52. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Hans: Sure

    @Gambler: Yeah, I like him late, didn’t realize ESPN had him that low.

  53. Mr2Bits says:


    You’d drop Halladay and get a first round pick? I was thinking losing Hart. Why Halladay? Granted Hart is a round 24 keeper but I could always get him around 12-16 again. Halladay would certainly be the first pick off the board if I toss his back into the pool.

  54. RandomItalicizedVoice says:

    @Grey: Would you agree that in a 6X6 H2H league that counts R, HR, RBI, SB, AVG, BB and QS, ERA, WHIP, K, SV, HLD that SP are even further devalued compared to standard 5X5 leagues because SP are only contributing to 4/12 cats while bats are contributing to 6/12 cats? Would such a setup significantly change the way you draft, taking pitchers even later and with less impetus to land topline SP??

  55. ScoutAbout says:

    @Grey: I heart you, Grey!

  56. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Mr2Bits: You can throw back Hart if you like, would be my 2nd choice. In a ten team league, there’s got to be other SPs to draft though.

    @RandomItalicizedVoice: Yeah, I agree it devalues SPs tremendously.

    @ScoutAbout: And I heart you, let’s make out!

  57. Denys says:

    “…no National League pitcher threw more than Wainwright’s 463.1 innings over the past two seasons.”

    always something to consider when drafting. if an pitcher is deemed an injury-risk at one point or another, and has that type of workload, likely won’t bode well for the entire season.

  58. Grey

    Grey says:

    *********THERE’S A NEW POST FOR FOLLOWUPS.******

  59. Derek in Utah says:

    Was thinking about punting Catcher in my 16 mngr H2H Dynasty, but now I’m thinking I like me some Wieters.

    What do you say, Grey?

    Oh…and the Wainwright tragedy? That’s why you don’t draft SP’ers early on.

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