Time to re-visit those monthly rankings, again. As always, the criteria used for these is as follows:
1. Current performance level
2. Expected performance for rest of season
3. Value based on standard 5×5 categories (avg over OBP)
One note, despite the fact that it is late in the season, we are not accounting for keeper value right now. We are staying within the parameters of this season alone. Injured players remain on the list at the bottom so we can just see who was up there from start to finish. That being said, here’s how the catching position looks right now….
|Penthouse on Park Avenue|
The same four from last month return to the top tier, without question. McCann may be hurt, but his numbers are still first rate and he will be back to raking in no time. Montero and Avila may have cooled a bit, but there hasn’t been a significant enough drop-off to warrant removal from the tier. Napoli gets the bump for finally living up to all that pre-season “hey, he’s hitting in Texas now” hype. He’s been hitting like a monster and showing no signs of cooling off.
A case can be made for any of the top three in this tier to get a bump up and the difference between them and the top level is almost negligible. Still, batting average improvements would be welcomed for both Santana and Arencibia, and it’s be nice if Mauer could find a bit of a power stroke again. Lucroy and Molina get the bump for overall consistency and sound production. In a 12 team league, for the price it would cost, neither would be a bad choice as your top backstop.
|Small House in the ‘Burbs|
You can’t deny the work Iannetta has put in over the last month to improve his overall production and numbers. It was tempting to bump him higher than just the top of the third tier, but we all know that batting average from July and the first week of August will never last. Martin and Wieters drop in the rankings as both have steadily cooled and neither is putting up numbers the rest of the way that wouldn’t be replaceable by the remaining guys in this tier.
Salty gets a bump for his streaky power displays and McKenry joins him as the primary backstop in Pittsburgh. While Salty continues to garner more and more time McKenry’s could drop with the expected return of Ryan Doumit. Still, he’s performed admirably enough to warrant this tier. Dropping down here with some of the rest of the aging veterans is Posada whose one month of good production back in June will not sustain a ranking above the fourth tier anymore.
|Sharing a Room|
Johnson has performed well in the absence of Hundley, whose recovery has seemingly gone on forever, but with an expected return in a week or so, his ceiling has probably been met. Ross has done a fine job filling in for McCann, but he too is on his way back to the bench. Is it even necessary to ask why Jaso has been dropped another tier, or is the real question, “why has it taken this long to do so?”
Um, yeah. Exactly.