Bloomberg Sports Anchor Rob Shaw and Analyst Alex Burwasser recap the top five catchers this fantasy season as well as the top three busts.
TOP FIVE FANTASY PERFORMERS
A.J. Pierzynski, C, White Sox
The 35 year-old never hit more than 18 home runs in his career until this season when he exploded for 27 dingers for the White Sox, who contended in the AL Central all year long until the last week of the season. He also maintained a solid batting average of .278 with 77 RBI. The veteran seems to have new life and now looks like a lock to get the 355 hits he needs for 2,000 in the next two or three seasons.
Wilin Rosario, C, Rockies
The rookie catcher for Colorado impressively led all NL catchers in the power department this year, bashing 28 home runs while adding 71 RBI. Where Rosario really excelled was against southpaws, who he hit to the tune of a .348 batting average and 14 home runs in only 112 AB.
Yadier Molina, C, Cardinals
Yadier Molina is not only the MVP on his Cardinals team this year, he may garner some votes for the MVP of the entire National League. He established career highs across the board with his .315 batting average to go along with 22 home runs and 76 RBI. Even though it is meaningless in the fantasy world, it should be mentioned that Molina is the best defensive catcher in baseball, as well as one of the most durable, and has been for several years for St. Louis.
Joe Mauer, C, Twins
After a year in which he struggled in 2011, Joe Mauer responded in a big way in 2012 by regaining his typical stroke hitting for a great average at .319 with 85 RBI. His .415 on-base percentage is very impressive and right up there with his stellar career average of .406. At 29 years old, Mauer is clearly still in his prime and back to being the franchise player the Twins expect to be in the middle of their order for years to come.
Buster Posey, C, Giants
Buster Posey missed most of last season after a gruesome collision at home plate, and with him out of the lineup and not calling pitches, the Giants struggled. With him healthy in 2012, the Giants cruised to a NL West division title. With his league-leading .336 average, 24 home runs, and 105 RBI, he is clearly the frontrunner for the NL MVP and clearly the number one fantasy catcher this season.
TOP THREE BUSTS
Alex Avila, C, Tigers
Though he provides decent defense and handles a great pitching staff, Avila struggled with the bat this season. He ended the year with ten less home runs (9) and a 47 point drop in batting average all the way down to .243. He did remain valuable in being able to get on base with a respectable .356 on-base percentage.
Brian McCann, C, Braves
The Braves 28 year-old catcher blasted 20 home runs again, but he did at a career worst .230 batting average to go along with a sub-.400 slugging percentage. He did not even start the Braves wild-card game against St. Louis. His years of catching may be taking its toll on his offensive performance.
Geovany Soto, C, Rangers
A very inconsistent player for the Cubs was finally traded to a contender in Texas this season, but the 29 year-old did not do much better in Arlington hitting below the Mendoza line at .198 for the season. He has a good eye at the plate but needs to really improve in all other facets in 2013.
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