Streaming catchers can be a Sisyphean task. Unless you have one of the top catchers, you are left guessing what to do with the position.
Catchers are similar to kickers in fantasy football; you don’t think about your catcher slot as much as the other high-scoring positions, but if you’re looking for an advantage over your competition it makes sense to monitor what is happening. Why wouldn’t you research every position on your team?
We have all been on the losing end of a matchup when we needed just one more hit or one more steal so that deep-cut catcher you just picked up and who homered on Sunday – that guy could deliver you to victory.
So join me gluttons of fantasy baseball punishment and without further ado – let’s kick off this week in streaming catcher land!
Reviewing Last Column’s Picks
Here are the established guidelines from last season for determining whether or not streaming was a “win”, and I’ll leave these up here each week as a reminder.
- When we stream a catcher, we’re not expecting multiple home runs, so a guy hitting .250 is helpful, and I’ll consider that a plus. Anything over .300 is a super plus and a near-automatic win. We must keep in mind the number of plate appearances — under 10 PA diminishes that boost.
- Home runs have a significant impact. If you get two homers from the catcher position, it’s a guaranteed win unless the catcher bats under the Mendoza line. However, if other factors exist, a catcher can still be a streaming win without home runs.
- Counting stats (R+RBI) is the lowest stat consideration because you’re not expecting them from your catcher, and they’re a nice bonus.
It’s been a few weeks since I wrote this column, so as a reminder, these were my streaming picks from the week of July 24th – July 30th.
Ruiz played every day during the week of July 24th and knocked out six hits in 23 at-bats, good for a .261 average. He added two RBI and one run. Not a spectacular week, but good enough for a streaming win. Ruiz has turned it up during the month of August, with a slash line of .306/.368/.494, four home runs, and 12 RBI. On the season he is hitting .258 with 15 home runs and 49 RBI.
Sabol only started in one game during the week of July 24th and only played in three games so he didn’t have much of a chance to make an impact. In five at-bats, he managed one hit and struck out three times. He has been ice cold in August with a .172 average and one RBI in 12 games.
Nate Kosher’s Streaming Record for 2023 Season: 8-8
Notes & Transactions From Last Week
- The A’s reinstated Carlos Pérez from the 1o-day IL. He’s hitting .235 with five home runs as a backup catcher for Oakland.
- The Mariners called up Brian O’Keefe from Triple-A Tacoma and placed Tom Murphy on the 10-day IL with a left thumb injury. Murphy’s having a nice season backing up starter Cal Raleigh and has hit eight home runs and 17 RBI with a .290 average in 2023.
- The Angels reinstated Logan O’Hoppe from the 60-day IL. This was a nice surprise for Angels fans as when the original injury occurred in April, it seemed O’Hoppe was done for the year. More on him below.
Have more questions? “Catch” up with me on Twitter @NathanielKosher!
This Week’s Streamers
Each week, we highlight a streaming option for a 12-team league and a 15-team league each week. Here are the potential streaming targets for the week of August 21st – August 27th:
Garver was injured early in the season and this led to Jonah Heim’s emergence as an All-Star. Then when Heim got injured in late July, it was Garver’s turn to step into the spotlight. He filled in admirably in the powerful Rangers offense and has raised his season average from .252 at the end of July to the current .287 mark (as of August 20th). In August he’s hitting a sizzling .365/.441/.673 with eight runs, four doubles, four home runs and 12 RBI. If you are looking for a catcher, Garver is currently rostered in only 22% of leagues. Heim has recently returned from the IL, but the Rangers have said they will work to get both Heim and Garver at-bats in the lineup.
If you remember back to the beginning of this season, O’Hoppe was one of the hottest-hitting catchers out of the gate. In 16 games he had four home runs and 13 RBI before suffering what was thought to be a season-ending shoulder injury.
Well, he just returned from the injury on Frida so there’s a good chance he is available. At this point in the season, some managers are beginning to lose interest in the waiver wire and you should scoop O’Hoppe up if you need a catcher. He’s rostered in only 11% of leagues. The Angels play six games during the upcoming week as they first face off against the Reds at home before heading on the road to play the underachieving Mets.
A 10-player list of potential streamers by weekly rank is added to each week. To qualify, the catchers must be 50% rostered or less. For example, if Danny Jansen is already rostered in your 12-team league, the next in line should be Travis d’Arnaud and so on down the list. Also, 15-team leagues are much deeper, so attention to Roster% is added to the process. The Roster% is based on Yahoo leagues.