Please see our player page for Gary Sanchez 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.

Well, the World Series is over, the citizens of Houston got to have their parade and now here we are – the offseason.

But don’t fret. If you are a regular Razzball reader, then you know we have been looking at the top keepers for 2023. Over the last two weeks we’ve released the 2023 Top Keepers 2023 – Relievers and 2023 Top Keepers – Starting Pitchers. This week – catchers!

Catchers are almost becoming like the place kickers of fantasy football – everyone needs one, but except for a few top players who can actually sway an outcome, they are all the same.

So here are a few simple rules when it comes to catchers:
Catchers, in general, will only play in about 110 to 120 games except for a few outliers. So don’t expect catchers, as a group, to perform like other position players.
If you think two catchers are equal except for age, go with the younger catcher. Few catchers age well.
Be happy if you have a catcher who is a standout in one scoring category. Rare is the catcher who hits for average and homers, even more rare if they add steals.
There are some catchers who make Rule #1, #2 and #3 completely false. If you have one of them, hold onto them for as long as you can.

In backing up rule No. 3, the career leader in home runs by a catcher (as in hitting a homer while playing catcher in that game) is Mike Piazza with 396. There are only three more players who hit more than 300 – Carlton Fisk (351), Johnny Bench (326) and Yogi Berra (305). That is it. This season, the highest batting average by a catcher with more than 200 at-bats was .285 by Alejandro Kirk of the Blue Jays – .285!

So for the below rankings, if you see a player like Martin Maldonado, you are going to wonder why he is even ranked. Dude slashed only .186/.248/.352. But he did hit 15 homers and drove in 45 runs.

You know how many other catchers hit more than 15 homers? Twelve. Do you know how many other catchers drove in more than 45 runs? Fourteen. When looking at a catcher like Maldanado for just his power and run production, he is actually close to being a starter in deep fantasy leagues.

Moral of the story – catchers are their own breed and should be viewed differently.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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 2022 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

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Frequent commenter, PK, said the other day, “We have Hunter Greene, and now Hunter Brown in the big leagues. Just need a Hunter Orange to complete the redneck trifecta!” And I haven’t stopped thinking about that, so now you also have to think about it. Hey, PK, save the genius stuff for me! Or, Hunter Brown (6 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, 1 walk, 5 Ks), as was the case yesterday in his MLB debut. At some point, the Astros have to stop creating top flight arms, don’t they? Wait a second! You know how the A’s went from attracting fans with OBP to allowing fans to have sex in the bleachers (sorta true, google it, if you don’t believe me), from Moneyball to NoMoneyball to Hornyball. Maybe the Astros are going from the Cheaty Cheaty Bang Bang Scandal to some other scandal we don’t know about yet that turns guys like Framber into aces. Mentioned this on the podcast the other day, which is on Youtube, and will be out on our regular podcast channel today, when discussing Hunter Brown. Astros get so much more from their starters than anyone expects. Why? Is something suspicious going on? Sorry, cheat once and I always think you’re cheating. With Hunter Brown, people actually expect nasty stuff, and with good reason. He has a filthy 85 MPH curve, 96 MPH slider — that’s right, 96 MPH! That’s the fastest slider in the majors this year, outside of deGrom — and a 97 MPH fastball. If you didn’t watch him, all the pitches looked devastatingly good. Now’s the time when I turn this back into the here and now and for this year, you’re likely better off with the Streamonator than holding Brown. Also, holding Brown is how one gets sepsis. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

And thus the Gunnar Henderson Era begins, not with a whimper but with a cocking of a ballpoint pen, and the cursive of a signature by the 108-year-old Peter Angelos, signing the contract to bring Gunnar up to the majors. “Gunnar, bend down to hear what Mr. Angelos wants to tell you!” His agent yells to him. Gunnar obliges, and Peter Angelos just blehs like Dracula. It’s a fantastic scene, and one Gunnar shouldn’t soon forget. Gunnar won’t be forgotten by fantasy baseball people either, i.e., Us! (Jordan Peele’s second best film. Though, after Get Out, I think they’re all tied, if we’re being honest. Any hoo!) Gunnar Henderson is everything you want — speed, power, contact. He’s Bobby Witt Jr., but better. Call him Better Witt Jr. Actually, call Bobby Witt Jr., a poor man’s Gunnar Henderson. Call him Slingshot Henderson. Itch had Corbin Carroll way above Gunnar Henderson in his top 25 prospects, and, honestly, I don’t know why. You can ask him. Gunnar’s not even particularly high on his top 10 Orioles prospects. Perhaps Itch was once bullied by a 23-year-old who was balding and looked like Cal Ripken Jr. Who’s to say? I’m grabbing Gunnar in every league. With only a month left, he might do nothing, but Gunnar also might immediately click click boom. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Have you ever been to Staten Island? Shame if not. It’s one of the best boroughs. Imagine if they built a pizzeria on top of a garbage dump. That’s Staten Island. On Staten Island, there’s a Mother Mary statue on every lawn, as far as the eye can see. On each Mother Mary statue, there’s garland and Christmas lights. All year around. If you were to turn on all those Mother Mary Christmas lights statues together, you could see them from the moon. The electric bill would be a fortune too, about as much to cover the gabagool expenses for the entire borough. Anyway, you take all those Mother Mary Christmas lights statues’ electrical power, and you still don’t have the power of Vinnie Pasquantino and the sheer electricity he brings. In 69 games — hey now! — of Triple-A, he had 18 HRs and a 12.2% strikeout rate. What is he, a power hitter that’s gonna hit .280? Mama mia, that’s Italian! His walk rate (12.5%) was over his strikeout rate! *pinching the cheeks of Vinnie Pasquantino’s player page* You’re so handsome! With Carlos Santana being traded to the Mariners — figured Carlos Santana would’ve went for a last hoorah in Philly with Rob Thomson, but oh well — Vinnie Pasquantino is worth a flyer for power in all leagues. It’s Vinnie Pasquantino PaiSZN! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“He’s a Mormon like a wolf!” That’s me singing about Ezequiel Duran (2-for-4 and his 1st homer) as he was called up by the struggling-to-get-offense Rangers, who are only spending $500 million this year. Whatever the case, circle July 8th on your calendar as the first day we can get the long-awaited matchup of Duran/Duran. Her name is Edwin Rios and she is dancing on the sand! In the Itch’s top 25 2nd base prospects, Ezequiel got some shine, “Acquired from the Yankees in the Joey Gallo deal, Duran is a twitch factory who logged 19 HR and 19 SB in 105 games in High-A this year, slashing .267/.342/.486 between the two organizations. He also went to the fall league and slashed .278/.333/.611 with another three home runs in 16 games. I’ve been into this guy’s baseball actions since the first time I saw video of him way back in 2017. He’s a stout right handed hitter at 5’11” 185 lbs, who swings like he’s killing snakes. Grey better watch out, since he’s a snake.” Not cool! In deeper leagues, where you’re struggling for everything — wouldn’t be me! (Absolutely is me!) — I could see grabbing Duran. “Just like that river twisting through a Dusty land!” Me singing about Duran when he faces the Dusty-led Astros. Unlike the Phils’ defense, that shizz is catchy. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Louie…Kah-steel-yo…Cah-still-oh…Cah-stee-low…Lou-ess Cah-sty-lo. Did I get it? Was it in there somewhere? I took thirteen years of Spanish (as detailed in my ebook Who Is Grey Albright — available in our shop!) and my Anglo tongue can’t get Luis Castillo out (6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 3 walks, 10 Ks, ERA at 3.38) but he was sure able to get out the Red Sox yesterday! (You didn’t think I’d land that sentence as well as I did; admit it.) Going into Fenway and holding the Sawx to one hit and striking out 10 is something to make Daddy stand up and take notice. Luckily, I have a standing desk so I don’t need to hunch over to type this. Castillo’s had a strange journey from borderline ace to “Do I even want to draft him in a shallower league?” His 9.5 K/9, 2.7 BB/9, 2.89 xFIP in 26 2/3 IP is still a pretty small sample size — that’s what she said derisively! — but it’s the best his numbers have looked in any capacity for years. His velocity is pretty down, and, coupled with the shoulder soreness in March, I wouldn’t necessarily bet on it continuing, but better to be here than Berrios. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Hope everyone had a glorious Memorial Day, while placing some hot dogs in your gullet and swallowing them whole with some cheap beer. Like George Washington would’ve wanted it! George used to remove his wooden teeth and eat hot dogs whole. True story. So, I’ve become Mr. Pull My Pitcher With 90 Pitches. I hate pitches 90-100. They suck. In ten years, I will hate pitches 80-90. Then, ten years later, I will be Mr. I Like The Starter Who Comes In From The 4th Thru The 5th Inning. ACKSUALLY, that brings up a point, what happens when no starters go more than four innings? It’s coming at some point. Will we adjust our fantasy scoring categories? Something to think about, which is why I’m looking for an emoji with a hand on a chin that is using its other hand to slowly raise its middle finger towards Craig Counsell. Aaron Ashby (6 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 2.70) was fantastic. Dot dot dot. Through 6 innings! He never needed to go out there for the 7th, and it unraveled from pitches 90 thru 100. See? That’s why I am whoever I said I am five sentences ago, to paraphrase Eminem. Ashby’s 11.5 K/9, 5 BB/9, 3.08 xFIP is so itsy-bitsy close to an ace and unusable on the other side. Thankfully, his command is usually much better, i.e., AA – BB = CC, i.e., Aaron Ashby minus walks equals CC Sabathia. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What is up party people? The grind never ends and that’s what wins fantasy leagues. It’s mid May so we have about 6ish weeks of real games to pour over. By now your studs have started to separate themselves from the solid performers and guy or two that you want to poke with a stick to see if they’re even alive. Peep your roster, see who’s hot and who’s not. Then replace your worst players with the guys below. Simple.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Kyle Tucker (2-for-5, 6 RBIs and his 6th and 7th homer) has three asses, because he’s — count them with me now — an unassuming assassin.

That photo of him brings me so much joy. He’s like, “I’m on your fantasy team? Okay, cool.” He looks like he just let out a fart, and only he knows it. Using one of his three asses, I presume. This Kyle Tucker assault was brought to you initially by Nathan Eovaldi (1 2/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 4.32) as he gave up five homers, all in the 2nd inning. Apparently, Manfred tried to work the 2019 ball back into circulation. Also, in this game, not simply Eovaldi — Nothan? Novaldi? Meh, maybe now’s not the time for portmanteaus — Yordan Alvarez (2-for-4, 3 runs) hit his 12th homer. Captain Woo Cubano gonna star in Dongs Just Wanna Have Fun; Yuli Gurriel (2-for-5, 3 runs, 2 RBIs) hit his 3rd, and 3rd homer in the last five days for the smoldering schmotato; Jeremy Pena (2-for-5) hit his 7th for a nice welcome-back-old-friend to the lineup and to the New England area (he’s from Are-Eye); Michael Brantley (2-for-5, 3 RBIs) hit his 3rd homer, and I just thought of something, everyone on the Astros is better than that former Astros player Carlos Correa. Bummer for him! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

*takes long inhale* You smell that? It’s the glorious smell of actual baseball trades mixed with the mold in your mother’s basement! So, the Twins have more irons in the fire than Tigers Woods’s chimney. Since the Sonny Gray deal was self-contained, let’s start there. Sonny Gray was traded to the Twins. Reds have been rebuilding since their last playoff series win in 1995. “This mean Greene?” asks me and Dr. Seuss. First off (after that negging of the Reds), good on the Twins. Gray (him not me) was at the bottom of his perceived value last year after an unlucky year, and, well, you can read about all that at the top 60 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball. All that was standing between him and an uptick in value was less homers allowed, so what better place than the Hubert H. Homerfree Dome? Kinda bummed I haven’t drafted Gray in multiple leagues already. Where’s the self-love?! As for Hunter Greene, moved him up in top 100 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball, and updated the pitchers pairings tool. Didn’t change his projections because still don’t know how many innings he can throw, but he’s in good shape to see the rotation in the landmark case of sooner vs. later.

Then the busy Twins, sent Mitch Garver to the Rangers for Isiah Kiner-Falefa, more on him in a few. The Rangers just need to make deals, whether they’re good for them or not. During the lockout, the Rangers were pulling on their collar, sweating, screaming, “I need to make a deal, man!” They’re like Pookie from New Jack City and their crack pipe is MLB roster moves. Someone needs an intervention, and that someone’s name is Texas Rangers. Not to mention, I understand Israeli Diner-Falafel is less than desirable for fantasy, but he actually made sense on the Rangers. Have the Rangers heard they lost Josh Jung? The Rangers are like a team that doesn’t draft a 3rd baseman for 15 rounds, saying, “3rd base is deep.” At least if the Rangers were going to send away Israeli Diner-Falafel, they could’ve got back Elijah Colavito-Tabouli. With the trade for Mitch Garver, the Rangers realized Jonah Heim was Superbad. Jonah Heim was removed from the 2022 fantasy baseball rankings — Hey, Jonah Heim, Don’t Look Up your name in the rankings! The top 20 catchers for 2022 fantasy baseball was updated for Mitch Garver (due to a better lineup and worse catcher behind him). That rankings post was also briefly updated for Ryan Jeffers, but the Twins weren’t done.

Please, blog, may I have some more?