Top 30 Catchers for Fantasy Baseball 2024

Scott Chu lists his top 30 catchers for fantasy baseball in 2024.

Catcher is deeper than ever thanks to a wave of young talent making their way to the majors combined with teams seemingly becoming more willing to let catchers play in more than 100 games in a season. There are even enough catchers who project to have a positive value this season for everyone in a 12-team format to draft one!

We still see a draft premium charged for the elite catchers, especially among the top four, but once they are off the board, you’ll find there are a lot of options to choose from no matter what categorical needs you have on offense (except for stolen bases, as only J.T. Realmuto has any real shot at stealing more than 10 and is the only catcher to reach double-digits steals since Yadi Molina did it in 2012).

As with all of the position ranking articles, these blurbs and ranks come from my Top 300 Hitters for Fantasy Baseball 2024 piece that also debuted today! Check that piece out for more on my rankings philosophy and, well, all the rest of my rankings.

Check out the Hacks & Jacks podcast featuring Scott Chu and Joe Gallina, which also happened to be a finalist for Best Baseball Podcast of 2021 by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA)!

I also host an AMA in the r/fantasybaseball subreddit every Friday (starting sometime in late March) starting around noon ET that lasts through the rest of the day and into the weekend, so feel free to join the fun and ask questions or make comments.


Tier 1


1. Adley Rutschman (C, BAL) – Rutschman finished as the second-best fantasy catcher in 2023 thanks to his positive contributions across the board (except for stolen bases, but he’s a catcher so that doesn’t count). He’ll be just 26 years old at the start of 2024 and Rutschman has already proven he has elite plate discipline and contact ability. His rolling chart for contact ability (below) shows that every single 200-swing sample we have for Adley was in the 90th percentile or better, which is a truly remarkable accomplishment for a backstop in his first full season in the majors.

Rutschman can’t challenge Smith or Contreras in the power department, but thanks to Rutschman’s everyday presence in the lineup (he had 76 more plate appearances than any other catcher in 2023), he has the highest floor at the position and more than enough upside to lead all catchers in every fantasy stat except for home runs and stolen bases.

2. Will Smith (C, LAD) – Smith has finished among the top three catchers for three consecutive seasons thanks to his plus power and prime spot within the potent Dodger lineup. Thanks to three very consistent seasons, Smith is an easy player to project on the back of a napkin—22-25 home runs, 70-80 runs scored, 75-85 RBI, and a .260 batting average. That easily makes Smith a top-three catcher again, and while I think Adley has a higher floor because of the 20 to 30 extra points of batting average, you could argue Smith’s extra handful of home runs is more valuable to your team by this point in the draft.

3.  J.T. Realmuto (C, PHI) – It wasn’t a bad season for Realmuto by any means—he did steal 16 bases and hit 20 home runs—but for the first time in what feels like forever, he finished outside the top five catchers in 2023. The rise of several young catchers combined with a bit of a down year in terms of batting average and contact led to his lowest full-season RBI total since 2016 (63) were the most likely culprits, and while I do think the batting average and/or strikeout rate can rebound a bit, it’s hard to see him find his way back to the top of the catcher class. As a fun fact, the last primary catcher not named J.T. Realmuto to steal at least 10 bases was Yadi Molina in 2012.

4. William Contreras (C, MIL) – Seeing the strikeout rate drop to 20.6% in 2023 was a good sign, as the 29.3% and 27.7% he posted in 2021 and 2022 were big red flags that indicated there might be a low floor. Contreras only hit 19 home runs in his 141 games after hitting 28 in his 149 games across 2021 and 2022, and that’s largely due to his extreme ground ball tendencies as his 55.0% groundball rate was the third highest in the league among qualified hitters. There’s 25 home run power here if he can bring that number below 50%, if not more, and the Brewers seem committed to playing him every day. I think some will place Contreras at the top of their catcher rankings or projections based on the upside, and I wouldn’t blame you for it. These top catchers are tough to separate.


Tier 2


5. Willson Contreras (C, STL) – After a rocky start in St. Louis, Contreras hit 20 home runs and chipped in over 120 combined runs and RBI for the fourth time in as many 162-game seasons. I see no reason Contreras can’t do that again, and that kind of floor is extremely rare at catcher.

6. Yainer Diaz (C, HOU) – With the manager already declaring Diaz as the head backstop heading into 2024, Diaz has the potential to finish as a top-five catcher thanks to his blend of hit tool, power, and opportunity. It wouldn’t take much for Diaz to hit within the top five spots in the order for the Astros (Roster Resource has him sixth, with Abreu in front of him), and even if he only plays in 110-120 games, Diaz could approach 25 home runs and 75 RBI. Diaz’s quality of contact data from Statcast supports the high batting average we saw. This combination of talent and situation has me placing Diaz in a tier of his own at catcher and as my clear number five.

7. Salvador Perez (C/1B, KCR) – Perez is a two-category catcher at this phase of his career as he provides home runs and RBI with extreme reliability as he tries not to hurt you in runs scored and batting average. His 22-25 home runs and 70-80 RBI are about as bankable as they come if he plays at least 120 games, though at some point we have to wonder when the extreme mileage on Sal’s tires start to impact his ability. His barrel rate, hard-hit rate, and average exit velocity were down from his 2021-2022 numbers, but they were still in line with numbers from before that stretch so I don’t think we should be concerned yet.

8. MJ Melendez (C/OF, KCR) – Melendez finally turned it on towards the end of the season, hitting .286 with eight home runs over his last 44 games. Counting stats won’t be easy to come by in Kansas City, but there’s enough raw power in his bat that Melendez could get to 20 or more home runs in his everyday role and score 80 runs. The batting average won’t be better than .240, but in leagues where he’s still eligible at catcher, there’s plenty of value. As just an outfielder, Melendez falls at least 20-30 spots.

9. Sean Murphy (C, ATL) – It was a tale of two halves for Murphy, who posted a .999 OPS with 17 home runs and 97 combined runs and RBI in the first half only to suddenly start riding the pine three to four days a week (which started in June) and struggled to the tune of a .585 OPS and just four home runs and 33 combined runs and RBI in the second half. It was a truly baffling collapse for him, as his strong defense behind the plate would normally have him starting most days. That timing suggests that maybe the hamstring issue that popped up in June impacted him throughout the season, but we have yet to be given any concrete information about why his role changed so suddenly. That lack of insight makes me extremely worried about relying on him in 2024, but the upside from the first half necessitates that I rank him in the top 150.

10. Cal Raleigh (C, SEA) – It’s safe to expect that Raleigh will hit home runs with a low batting average once again in 2024, and the fact that Seattle also lets him DH when he’s not behind the plate means that he’ll get more plate appearances than the usual catcher as well. Raleigh can be streaky due to his power-only approach, but as long as you have the patience to ride out the bad times, he makes for a solid fantasy catcher.


Tier 3


11.  Keibert Ruiz (C, WAS) – 2023 was a breakout for Ruiz, and due to his strong hit tool, it could very well be the expectation going forward. The 18 home runs are probably close to the top of what I’d project for him, but the .260 batting average has room to improve thanks to Ruiz possessing one of the best contact abilities in the league that persists across all pitch types. The power is the primary thing to be suspicious of, as he doesn’t make very much hard contact nor does he barrel the ball very often, but Ruiz’s ability to put the ball in play consistently creates a very high floor that should keep him as a set-and-forget catcher in virtually all formats. In points leagues, you can even lift him a tier as he rarely strikes out and should continue to play a lot of games in Washington.

12. Francisco Alvarez (C, NYM) – Alvarez has the upside to be, well, Cal Raleigh but with a better batting average, but unlike Raleigh, he doesn’t currently have the luxury of being the DH when he’s not catching. If Alvarez can find some consistency in 2023, we could see him get those DH plate appearances, but until then, he’s an upside power-hitting catcher.

13. Logan O’Hoppe (C, LAA) – O’Hoppe should be the primary catcher for the Angels, though injuries took him out for most of 2023. While he was healthy, though, O’Hoppe clobbered 14 home runs in just 51 games and while that pace isn’t sustainable, 110 games could give way to 22-25 home runs with a .250 average, and in 130 games (which is all the rage among catchers these days), there’s an outside chance at 30.

14. Gabriel Moreno (C, ARI) – Moreno found his stride in the second half last season, hitting .313/.383/.511. This improved line correlates to improvements in both his contact ability and his decision-making, which align with the skills we saw in him as a prospect.


Moreno is unlikely to hit 15 home runs in a season, but his batting average should be north of .280 and the counting stats will be quite good for a catcher (think 120-130 combined runs and RBI). Moreno also has some sneaky speed and should chip in six to eight steals too, if you’re into that sort of thing.

15. Jonah Heim (C, TEX) – Heim was not the same hitter after hitting the IL in late July, hitting just .202/.268/.333 in 41 regular season games. That injury and following slump allowed Garver to steal Heim’s spot in the lineup, and as it stands now, it’s hard to see Heim climbing back to the top two-thirds of the order. 20 home runs is a reasonable expectation due to the volume we should expect for Heim in 2024, but the ratios, which historically were putrid, are hard to project. If he finds his first-half form, this is a top-five catcher, but the .214/.275/.374 line from his pre-2023 career would make Heim a very difficult catcher to roster for a full season.

16. Mitch Garver (C, SEA) – Health has been an issue for Garver for several seasons, but his career .252/.342/.483 line highlights the upside he brings when healthy. Health should come a bit easier for Garver as the primary DH in Seattle, and if he plays in 120 games (his current single-season high is 103 set in 2018), he should hit something like 22-25 home runs with 75 or more RBI. I like Garver as a last-round dice roll in shallow single-catcher leagues, though folks in two-catcher formats may look for a safer option.


Tier 4


17. Danny Jansen (C, TOR) – Jansen has at least 15 home runs in two straight part-time seasons, though the batting average and walk rates returned to his lower career norms in 2023. The signing of Turner clogs up the DH spot that I previously assumed would be filled by Kirk and Jansen on their off days, so the playing time projection takes a hit. He should still play enough to be a top-12 to top-15 catcher, but I am not as rosy on Jansen’s upside as most projections.

18. Luis Campusano (C, SDP) – Campusano was excellent in his 49 games in 2023, hitting .319/.356/.491 with seven home runs and just a 12.1% strikeout rate. Campusano has the power and plate skills to be a top-12 catcher, but being a young catcher is tough both mentally and physically and it’s hard to say exactly how many counting stats he can pile up in the bottom half of the extremely top-heavy Padres lineup.

19. Bo Naylor (C, CLE) – The younger Naylor enters 2024 as the starting catcher for Cleveland, and while he was inconsistent in his 2023 debut, there’s enough power upside to see a path to 20 home runs and five to seven stolen bases. His high walk rate makes him a lot more viable in OBP leagues, but those in standard leagues who decided to wait until the last pick on a catcher might as well throw a dart on Naylor’s upside.

20. Alejandro Kirk (C, TOR) – Being a very bankable 10-home run guy who can hit .270 with a .350 OBP is worth something, and to me, it’s this much. He’s safely inside the top 200 if you’re in an OBP or points league thanks to that one-to-one walk-to-strikeout ratio he’s shown over his career.

21. Elias Díaz (C, COL)  I’m not sure Díaz can repeat the 141 games played in 2023 that drove him to 14 home runs and 72 RBI (they signed Jacob Stallings in January likely to give Díaz a breather in 30-40 games, if not more), but when he plays at home he’ll be a popular streamer for batting average and a little bit of pop.

22. Shea Langeliers (C, OAK) – A classic second catcher who can hit 20 home runs and also .210. There are plenty of builds that can benefit from the power boost at catcher, and maybe he finds just a bit better luck (and a less extreme fly ball approach) to get that average closer to .225 or .230.

23. Yan Gomes (C, CHC) – Gomes hit a surprisingly serviceable .267 last season as the Cub’s primary backstop, a role he will carry into 2024. 10 home runs is probably about all the veteran catcher can muster, and recreating his 63 RBI could be difficult given that the lineup around him is not as strong as it looked a year ago, but there should be plenty of consistency here for a back-end second catcher in deep leagues.

24. Ryan Jeffers (C, MIN) – 14 home runs and a .276 batting average is quite a haul for a late-round catcher, and that’s what Jeffers did last season. I doubt Jeffers can overperform his expected batting average by almost 50 points for a second consecutive season, but 14 home runs with a .240 batting average isn’t that bad either at this stage of the draft. Move him down your board considerably if you’re trying to chase upside, but if you’re looking for a solid floor on a late catcher, Jeffers is here for you.


Tier 5


25. Austin Wells (C, NYY) – The Yankees disappointing 2023 season allowed several top prospects to make their major league debut. Wells was one of them and hit four home runs in just 19 games. Thanks to his power, he has the offensive potential to be a standout fantasy option at catcher. The realistic truth though is that the Yankees will likely limit his playing time behind the dish as he continues to work on his defense in 2024. Splitting his time at catcher pushes him down on this list.

Here is what Matt wrote on Wells back in November:

“Having seen Wells live a few times, the excitement for him in Yankee Stadium is substantial. The short porch and his pull-side home run power are extremely enticing from a fantasy perspective. He could be a difference-maker in the home run category from the catcher position.”

26. Jake Rogers (C, DET) – Roughly 20 home runs and a very low batting average is a lock in my mind as Rogers displays classic good decision-making with classic poor contact skills that we’ve seen from many catchers with a similar basic profile.

27. Connor Wong (C, BOS) – Wong doesn’t have the pop of some of the low-ratio power guys at the back end of the catching pool, but he makes up for it with his ability to steal six to eight bases and hit better than .230. It ain’t much, but it’s honest work.

28. Gary Sánchez (C, FA) – There’s always room somewhere for a catcher who can hit 20 home runs in limited plate appearances, and I imagine that someone will take a look at Sánchez during the spring. Sánchez hit 19 home runs in just 75 games last season, and even though it came with a .217 batting average and .288 OBP, there was enough there to suggest that he’s worth a dice roll.

29. Travis d’Arnaud (C, ATL) – Atlanta remains surprisingly loyal to d’Arnaud, giving him plenty of run as the second catcher along with occasional DH at-bats. 12 home runs sound about right at this point in his career, and I think he can rebound his ratios to something closer to his career .250/.312/.425.

30. Freddy Fermin (C, KC) – Fermin was fantastic in his 70-game sample in 2023, hitting .281/.321/.461 with nine home runs. Injury cut his campaign short, though, and being the backup to Salvador Perez doesn’t often create much opportunity for playing time.


Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter/X)

Scott Chu

Scott Chu is a Senior Fantasy Analyst here bat Pitcher List and has written about fantasy baseball since 2013. He's also the inventor and mascot for Fantasy Curling (as seen the Wall Street Journal) and a 3x FSWA Award Finalist. In addition to being a fantasy analyst, he's a dad, animal lover, Simpsons fanatic, cartoon connoisseur, amateur curler, a CODA, and an attorney.

2 responses to “Top 30 Catchers for Fantasy Baseball 2024”

  1. mik3brooks says:

    I’m surprised to see Sal Perez outside your top 30.

    • Scott Chu says:

      Thanks for catching this – inadvertently skipped him when pulling this from the Top 300. In the Top 300,he ranks just behind Yainer Diaz. I’ll make that fix in this piece soon!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Account / Login