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Please see our player page for Elias Diaz to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

After we went over the top 10 for 2024 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2024 fantasy baseball in our (my) 2024 fantasy baseball rankings, it’s time for the meat and potatoes rankings. Something to stew about! Hop in the pressure cooker, crank it up to “Intense” and let’s rock with the top 20 catchers for 2024 fantasy baseball. […]

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Catchers – you can’t live with them, and in fantasy baseball, we can’t live without them.

This is a position that is not deep and not that talented after the top tier of backstops. You may get a catcher who has power but kills your average and on-base percentage. Or you may get a catcher who hits well and gets on base, but has no power at all.

There are very few perfect catchers in baseball, and the few that are close are going to be tough to get or trade for due to the scarcity of those players. But you almost feel compelled to try to go after them or hang onto them a year or two too long because for every Adley Rutschmans, there are two Martin Maldonados who just kill your team.

I came up with forty catchers to rank, but that is mostly to help fantasy owners who play in 20-team (or more) leagues or the leagues that require two catchers. If you are in a 12- to 16-team league, the Tier 4 and perhaps Tier 3 players will likely mean nothing to you.

Anyway, let’s get to the 2024 Top Keepers – Catchers.

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Please don’t ask if this is a ranking for next year. It’s not a ranking for next year. It’s me recapping last season. Please, for the love that all is holy, understand this. It’s all I ask of you. Well, that and shower me with praise. The latter isn’t hard, the former is. Also, remembering which is the ‘latter’ and which is the ‘former’ is hard too. Quibbles and semantics, my good man and five lady-mans. It wouldn’t be fair for me to preseason rank the players, then rank them again in the postseason based on my opinion, so these postseason top 20 lists are ranked according to our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater. It’s cold hard math, y’all! Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2023 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

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Someone who liked Friday Night Lights but can’t properly recall their favorite character says, “I’m a  Cole Ragans fan.” Well, me too! Ragans learned an all-important lesson: If you don’t let runners on, they can’t trickle down into runs. There’s no crack of the bat epidemic following this Ragans around! Cole R. sinks the A’s! Wait, that’s a pun about home appliances not the late-President. Ragans supplies “retire the side” economics! Better! So, Cole Ragans (6 IP, 0 ER, 2 hits, zero walks, 11 Ks, ERA at 3.66) threw another great start yesterday. Easy matchup, but he’s been a revelation. He’s why you don’t pay for starters ever, in redraft or dynasty. They come out of nowhere or the good ones just aren’t that good. He’s added four miles per hour (FOUR!) on his fastball, and added a slider that has a .155 xBAA or .208 actual. He already had a change that no one could hit. He now has four pitches, and three great ones (the cutter is iffy). This Ragans should get you aroused without sitting on your lap calling you Mr. T. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The legend continues…Reds infielder slash phenom slash messiah Elly De La Cruz lifted the Cincinnati Reds onto his back Friday night doing it all quite literally by hitting for the cycle to upset the consensus best team in baseball, the Atlanta Braves, Friday night in an absolutely wild slugfest that extended the Reds win streak […]

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Shohei Ohtani (1-for-2, 2 RBIs, hitting .301) hit his 22nd homer to tie for the MLB lead, and he tossed 6 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 3.29, vs. the Rangers in Texas, one MLB’s best teams, and the Win. Are there enough superlatives for Ohtani? Let’s try, he’s the best baseball player ever. Good place to start. It’s unfair to compare different eras, because things were different 100 years ago when Babe played. Things were different 20 years ago when Bonds was in his heyday. Speaking of which, besides those two, there was Say Hey, there was Hammerin’, there was–Rickey knows you’re not forgetting Rickey–There was Rickey! None needed their full name mentioned. You knew who I meant. None pitched as well as Ohtani is pitching. Babe’s the only one to even give that a go, and we know when he was an elite hitter, he wasn’t also a pitcher. Ohtani sent a ball 443 feet the opposite way last night with ease, has hit six homers in seven games, and has 105 Ks in 82 IP, which is third in strikeouts. Absurd. There are no superlatives. He is the superlative. Superlative Ohtani. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Wistfully, “This guy has such great health.” That’s Royce Lewis looking at Byron Buxton. Royce Lewis is the Merely A Flesh Wound Guy. Royce Lewis has been injured so much he actually knows the difference between physical and occupational therapy. In fact, when Lewis is watching a basketball game that is going to OT, he hops out of his wheelchair, grabs crutches and yells, “It’s time to see Sheila!” So, do you have *looks at watch* six years for Royce Lewis to break out? For those who don’t know the bare minimum about Lewis, he was the meow’s cat, missed two years with injury, then came back and was hitting everything in the minors, then, due to that ferocious bat, he was called up. This was last year. Then he hurt himself and missed another year. Lieutenant Dan has had less issues with his legs. Royce Lewis has torn his ACL so many times that he thinks an “ACL” is Roman for 150 knee injuries. He can’t be roamin’ because his legs are made of taffy and rubber bands. “I wish they used cherry.” That’s Royce chewing on the creamsicle taffy holding together his knee. Is he back to hitting again in the minors? Yup, and here we are again. He has 30/30/.270 type tools, also see: the young Buxton comp. He has the 2nd best projections for all hitter rookies on our Prospectonator (check out #1). Lewis is a can’t miss fantasy superstar if he can miss just one injury. Word on the street that Lewis can’t walk down without hurting himself is he could be called up as soon as he’s eligible on May 29th. Grab him now, before he chews through the rest of the creamsicle taffy. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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“Worse thing that God ever spit up.”
“Hitler?”
“What? No, I’m looking at what Jake McCarthy did so far this year in the majors.”
“So, you think Hitler was better than Jake McCarthy–”
“Shut up about Hitler!”

Jake McCarthy recalled in that above exchange and to the majors. I’d say he was hideous to start the year, but I’m afraid of a defamation suit being filed by the word “hideous.” “Ya know, I’ve had about enough of your disparaging.” That’s the word hideous. There was a reason why Jake McCarthy was on a bunch of my teams to start the year. It is illuminated by his four homers and four steals in only 22 games since he was sent down. He has great speed and power. I know you drank away most of what he did from your memory. This post: A splash of knowledge refreshing your Mind Eraser. Jake McCarthy can absolutely be worth rostering in every league. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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(NOTE: THIS POST WAS RELEASED EARLY THIS WEEK ON OUR PATREON. IT’S $10/MONTH)

“When will it all click?” is an amorphous thing. Could it be immediately? Cody Bellinger was immediate; Fernando Tatis Jr. was pretty immediate; Juan Soto was immediate. Now that I list these immediate guys, I’m beginning to wonder if success too fast is bad for the player. Like the child actor of baseball. Do you want to put your hands on your cheeks with aftershave, and scream after being left alone when you’re 12, or do you want to Culkin in your late-30’s on Succession? Fighting for success is better? I don’t know, but you can’t put a time on anyone’s breakout. Shohei Ohtani was in the league for a few leagues, drafted around 220th overall that preseason, then he broke out. We’re seeing something similar this year with Jarred Kelenic. Could the same be true of Josh Lowe? This is a guy who we’ve been touting since 2019, when he went 18/30 in Double-A. Then he followed that with 22/26 and we were all convinced he was going to arrive — and arrive he did! — but with a yawn. He started the year with the Rays last year, but was quickly sent down, and went 14/25 in the minors, and people started whispering the dreaded Quad-A label. And these people weren’t even in a library! The problem at every stop was his strikeouts would Bialystock & Bloom and he couldn’t produce, but not this year. Finally, Josh Lowe doesn’t seem like the low man of Lowes, but more like the Lowe man. He’s cut his strikeouts by a huge margin and, if he’s hitting for power, and running like he always did without the Ks? Then the Josh Lowe bar is high. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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Since we last met, the bucolic fantasy baseball landscape has turned into a blistering hellscape of suffering. Team rosters and waiver wires have thinned out considerably as the likes of Tim Anderson, Joey Gallo, Zach Eflin, Kyle Farmer, Yoan Moncada, Orlando Arcia, Michael Harris, Kyle Bradish, Adam Duvall, Aaron Civale, German Marquez, Matt Manning, Brandon […]

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