This article is part of our Farm Futures series.
There are all kinds of theories out there regarding how catching prospects should be valued in dynasty leagues. Some will argue that because reliable production at the position is so scarce, good catching prospects need to be highly valued. I would counter that "good catching prospects" often turn out to be less than stellar, so we should not assume this year's top catching prospects will be the cure to what ails us. Further complicating matters is the fact that anywhere from 10 to 30, or even more, catchers start in some dynasty leagues. I rank prospects with the assumption that 20 catchers start (the RotoWire Dynasty Invitational is a 20-team league where every team starts one catcher). If I were ranking catchers under the assumption that 30 catchers have to start, then I would rank the catching prospects a little higher. If I were ranking catchers under the assumption that only 12 or 15 catchers have to start, I might only have eight or 10 catchers ranked in my entire top 400.
Another factor that makes this position so tricky to evaluate is the unique way production at the position is measured by MLB teams. Most contending teams will not give significant playing time to a catcher who is a poor defender. Framing matters a lot, as does game calling and handling a pitching staff. Controlling the running game also matters, but not nearly as much as framing. So, when a catcher like Francisco Mejia gets poor grades on his