You remember back to March when I gave away all my position player rankings for free, right? For those of you who want to revisit my greatest hits, here's where you would go to get all my rankings for hitters – 2011: BBGuys Hitter Capsules.
I'm nothing if not accountable, so I'll review my top-10 predictions at each position as well as point out my biggest “hit” outside of the top-10 and my biggest “bust.” This should be fun.
Today, I'll start with the catchers position.
2011 CATCHER Top-10 1 Joe Mauer 2 Victor Martinez 3 Brian McCann 4 Buster Posey 5 Geovany Soto 6 Carlos Santana 7 Mike Napoli 8 Matt Wieters 9 Miguel Montero 10 Kurt Suzuki
Mauer was injured from start to finish and he ended up with a .287 average, three homers and 30 RBI in 296 at-bats. It was a dismal season for a man who owns a career .323 average and a Hall of Fame bat.
V-Mart showed an astonishing lack of power with only 12 home runs, but he knocked in 103 runs while hitting .330 in what was a rather remarkable season.
McCann failed to hit .275 for the second straight year (he hit .270), and he also posted a 6-year low in RBI with 71. Still, he hit 24 homers and was the only catchers in the NL to hit more than 18 homers.
Posey's year ended after just 162 at-bats when he was plowed over at the plate trashing his leg. He is back to catching bullpens already and the Giants hope he will be at 100 percent by spring training next year.
Soto would have been my bust of the year if not for the failings of Mauer. Soto did hit 17 homers and knock in 54 runs, but he batted .228 while his OBP of .310 was .038 points below his career mark.
Santana was the best catcher in the AL not named Martinez. Santana, in his first full season in the bigs, was the only catcher in baseball with 20 homers, 70 RBI and 70 runs scores (27, 79 and 84). The 84 runs led the position.
Napoli was a superstar this season, and I wrote all about his efforts in Player Profile: Mike Napoli.
Wieters was one of three catcher eligible players to hit 20 homers with 65 RBI and 70 runs scored (he had 22, 68 and 72). Matt killed it in the second half hitting 14 homers with a .840 OPS in 61 games.
Montero was a rock all year for the D'backs. After hitting .294-16-59 in 2009, he was injured in 2010 and limited to 85 games. He bounced back this year with the best effort of his career (.282-18-86-65).
Suzuki was my #10 catcher because of one main reason – consistency. He did appear in 130 games for a fourth straight year, and his total of 14 homers was an exact match for his 2009-10 average, but his average fell to a career worst (.237) while he lost 37 RBI from 2010 (71) and 44 from 2009 (88).
Hit: Chris Iannetta #14 The Rockies have still never given him 350 at-bats in a season, but with 345 this year he blasted 14 homers, knocked in 55 runs and scored 51 times. Only 11 catchers in the game went 14-50-50, and only three went 14-50-50 with a .370 OBP (the others were Alex Avila and Napoli). He may have hit only .238, but he walked 70 times leading to that impressive .370 OBP.
Bust: Joe Mauer #1 What more needs to be said? He stunk.
By Ray Flowers
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The co-host of The Drive on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87: Mon-Thurs 7 PM, Fri. 9 PM EDT), Ray also hosts a show Sunday night (7-10 PM EDT). Ray has spent years squirreled away studying the inner workings of the fantasy game to the detriment of his personal life. Specializing in baseball, football and hockey, some consider him an expert in all three.
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