2016 Catchers…going against the grain.

Everyone knows the big catchers that will be targeted in your 2016 Auction.

Buster Posey…$20 something dollars

Kyle Schwarber…$20 something dollars

Devin Mesaroco,  Travis d’Arnaud. Salvador Perez, Jonathon Lucroy, Russell Martin, Stephen Vogt, Yasmani Grandal and Brian McCann.

The top 10 or so come off the board. Time to panic right? No way…I’ve got your back.

While everyone else is spending on big name catchers who don’t play every day and get banged up pretty easily you can spend your money on a power hitting corner infielder or another outfielder.

Here are five guys who have the talent to produce just as much as most of the players listed above.

  1. Blake Swihart, BOS – This guy can flat out rake! When he got the call last season there was an adjustment period. Somewhere around late August Blake started to make solid contact. He is a switch hitter who will be in a very productive lineup and home stadium. In fact most stadiums in the AL East are hitter’s parks. I am going to have him as my #1 priority at catcher in all my leagues.
  2. J.T. Realmuto, MIA – J.T. has gone pretty much unnoticed by most baseball fans. He played for the Marlins last year but not many people watched the “Stantonless” Marlins, He has a quick bat and a patient approach at the plate which has led to some consistent contact. This quick bat produces a lot of line drives and doubles. Pretty good pop and he is very savvy when on the base paths.
  3. James McCann, DET – I know what you are thinking and the quick answer is “no”. James is not the brother of Brian McCann. They are not related. Funny coincidence that they are both catchers though. James had a break out season last year as he took the Tigers starting catcher spot away from Alex Avila. He was a very productive player adding a lot of counting stats as far as hits, RBI’s, and runs. He has some pop and will probably slug some more as he gains more experience.
  4. John Ryan Murphy, MIN – John (formerly J.T.) was just traded from the Yankees where he was blocked by Brian McCann to the Minnesota Twins where he should not have a problem winning the starting role over Kurt Suzuki. He is a solid defensive catcher and at the plate he really has flourished all be it in a once a week role with the Yankees. There is a lot of “pop” in his bat so he will be a good one to keep an eye on.
  5. Tom Murphy, COL – last season Tom did so well in the minors and then in a call up at the end of the year that the Rockies decided to go ahead and release Michael McKenry. Tom had a BABIP of .362 in his time with the Rockies last season. Some will say it is “lucky” or “unsustainable” but, he is regarded as a very good hitter who was a high draft pick and…well…he plays in Colorado. If Nick Hundley slumps or gets hurt which pushes Murphy into the starting role I don’t believe Hundley would ever get his starting role back.

These guys can be very sneaky pickups at the end of your drafts as you are adding more depth in the middle rounds.

There are 2 guys everyone should keep an eye out for who will be the top catching prospect waiting for a call up. Jorge Alforo, TEX. Texas refused to give him up in the Cole Hamels trade last season and for good reason.  This guy is a monster at the plate. He will most likely start the season in AAA Tulsa as he is a bit too aggressive at the plate and needs to learn how to be more selective. Gary Sanchez, NYY just demolished pitching in the Arizona Fall league as well. He should be watched as Brian McCann’s backup just in case an injury pops up there. These two guys have game changing raw power so be on the lookout.

On to look at first base options for the next post. I hope this helps.

Scott

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