As has become an All-Star break tradition, here’s a peek ahead at some very, very preliminary 2015 player rankings. I’m only concerned with next year here, so these aren’t true keeper rankings; if I were factoring in 2016 and beyond, some younger players would be listed quite a bit higher. As always, I’m going position by position (trying to account for next year’s position eligibility) and including a top 300 overall.
This winter’s free agents are listed without teams. Players facing option years are listed as “opt” in the team column.
2015 Catcher Rankings
|22||Christian Vazquez||Red Sox||88|
|24||Dioner Navarro||Blue Jays||20|
|38||Robinson Chirinos||Rangers||42 1B|
|39||Blake Swihart||Red Sox||NR|
|40||Tyler Flowers||White Sox||36|
- Carlos Santana would have topped the rankings here, but he hasn’t caught a single game since coming off the disabled list last month and it doesn’t look like he’ll qualify as a catcher in most formats next year (he’s at 11 games caught at the moment).
- It’s not a particularly strong free agent market for catchers, with Martin, Suzuki, Pierzynski, Soto and probably Hundley leading the way. The Orioles hold a $5 million option on Hundley, but the only way that gets picked up is if he’s traded.
- I wouldn’t be surprised if the Twins re-up Suzuki prior to free agency, further cutting into the class. If that happens, Pinto would drop some here. I’m not sure Pinto is ever going to be a starting catcher anyway; he can hit, but his defense is a problem.
- It’ll be interesting to see what the A’s do with their three-headed catching monster this winter. I’d actually like Norris better if they keep all three, since it would most likely mean that at least two are going to be in the starting lineup most of the time. Norris hasn’t really done any DHing this year, but that could change going forward.