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2013 Fantasy Baseball Rankings: Catchers

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Updated March 30, 2013

For the fifth season, About.com Baseball is back with its comprehensive fantasy baseball rankings. We've added some tweaks to the formula for 2013 and are confident the rankings are as accurate as ever. They'll be updated weekly in March, looking at trends, injuries and other developments.

The trend in fantasy baseball is more toward the head-to-head formats that became popular in fantasy football over the years. However, the original rotisserie-style, cumulative 5x5 format is still out there, especially among established leagues. These rankings are weighted toward head-to-head, but can easily be tweaked toward rotisserie, and there are notes under certain players who are more valuable in rotisserie-style play, where the lost art of stolen bases has a big reward. Some players who are highly ranked in a rotisserie-style format are worth a lot less in a points format.

Make sure you know the exact format your league is using, because it will affect the way you should prepare. You can learn more about the different formats here.

Baseball guide Scott Kendrick has been with About.com since 2007, has been playing fantasy baseball for 20 years and has ranked players for the last decade. He's perused just about every preseason magazine, scoured the other baseball websites and taken some of the best expert opinions into account.

There is some depth at catcher, and players in medium-sized leagues should all have a decent backstop. But after that, there is a significant drop-off.

On to the rankings at catcher, looking at the top 20 prospects, led by last year's National League MVP:

TIER 1: No-brainers

1. Buster Posey, Giants

  • Age on opening day: 26
  • 2012 stats: .336, 24 HR, 103 RBI, .957 OPS
  • Three-year average: .317, 15 HR, 63 RBI, .893 OPS
  • Note: Also likely eligible at first base.

TIER 2: Elite

2. Joe Mauer, Twins

  • Age on opening day: 29
  • 2012 stats: .319, 10 HR, 85 RBI, .861 OPS
  • Three-year average: .315, 7 HR, 63 RBI, .836 OPS
  • Note: Also likely eligible at first base.

3. Carlos Santana, Indians

  • Age on opening day: 26
  • 2012 stats: .252, 18 HR, 76 RBI, .785 OPS
  • Three-year average: .247, 17 HR, 59 RBI, .806 OPS
  • Note: Also likely eligible at first base.

4. Yadier Molina, Cardinals

  • Age on opening day: 30
  • 2012 stats: .314, 22 HR, 76 RBI, .874 OPS
  • Three-year average: .295, 14 HR, 67 RBI, .789 OPS

5. Wilin Rosario, Rockies

  • Age on opening day: 24
  • 2012 stats: .270, 28 HR, 71 RBI, .843 OPS
  • Three-year average: .262, 15 HR, 39 RBI, .824 OPS

TIER 3: Serviceable starters

6. Miguel Montero, Diamondbacks

  • Age on opening day: 29
  • 2012 stats: .286, 15 HR, 88 RBI, .829 OPS
  • Three-year average: .280, 14 HR, 72 RBI, .812 OPS

7. Jonathan Lucroy, Brewers

  • Age on opening day: 26
  • 2012 stats: .320, 12 HR, 58 RBI, .881 OPS
  • Three-year average: .279, 9 HR, 47 RBI, .738 OPS

8. Matt Wieters, Orioles

  • Age on opening day: 26
  • 2012 stats: .249, 23 HR, 83 RBI, .764 OPS
  • Three-year average: .253, 18 HR, 68 RBI, .748 OPS

9. Salvador Perez, Royals

  • Age on opening day: 22
  • 2012 stats: .301, 11 HR, 39 RBI, .798 OPS
  • Three-year average: .311, 7 HR, 30 RBI, .810 OPS

10. Jesus Montero, Mariners

  • Age on opening day: 23
  • 2012 stats: .260, 15 HR, 62 RBI, .685 OPS
  • Three-year average: .267, 9 HR, 37 RBI, .718 OPS

11. A.J. Pierzynski, Rangers

  • Age on opening day: 36
  • 2012 stats: .278, 27 HR, 77 RBI, .827 OPS
  • Three-year average: .278, 14 HR, 60 RBI, .748 OPS

12. Carlos Ruiz, Phillies

  • Age on opening day: 34
  • 2012 stats: .325, 16 HR, 68 RBI, .881 OPS
  • Three-year average: .303, 10 HR, 53 RBI, .842 OPS
  • Note: Will be suspended for first 25 games of season for use of Adderall.

TIER 4: Worth a look

13. Brian McCann, Braves

  • Age on opening day: 29
  • 2012 stats: .230, 20 HR, 67 RBI, .698 OPS
  • Three-year average: .257, 21 HR, 71 RBI, .784 OPS
  • Note: Likely out until late April.

14. Ryan Doumit, Twins

  • Age on opening day: 31
  • 2012 stats: .275, 18 HR, 75 RBI, .781 OPS
  • Three-year average: .272, 13 HR, 50 RBI, .775 OPS

15. Alex Avila, Tigers

  • Age on opening day: 26
  • 2012 stats: .243, 9 HR, 48 RBI, .736 OPS
  • Three-year average: .260, 11 HR, 53 RBI, .781 OPS

16. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Red Sox

  • Age on opening day: 27
  • 2012 stats: .222, 25 HR, 59 RBI, .742 OPS
  • Three-year average: .272, 13 HR, 50 RBI, .737 OPS

TIER 5: Backups only

17. John Jaso, Mariners

  • Age on opening day: 29
  • 2012 stats: .276, 10 HR, 50 RBI, .850 OPS
  • Three-year average: .256, 6 HR, 40 RBI, .757 OPS

18. Yasmani Grandal, Padres

  • Age on opening day: 24
  • 2012 stats: .297, 8 HR, 36 RBI, .863 OPS
  • Three-year average: .297, 8 HR, 36 RBI, .863 OPS

19. J.P. Arencibia, Blue Jays

  • Age on opening day: 27
  • 2012 stats: .233, 18 HR, 56 RBI, .710 OPS
  • Three-year average: .222, 14 HR, 46 RBI, .708 OPS

20. Russell Martin, Pirates

  • Age on opening day: 27
  • 2012 stats: .211, 21 HR, 53 RBI, .711 OPS
  • Three-year average: .231, 14 HR, 48 RBI, .711 OPS

Next five: A.J. Ellis, Dodgers; Kurt Suzuki, Nationals; Chris Iannetta, Angels; Wilson Ramos, Nationals; Tyler Flowers, White Sox

2013 position rankings

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