Martin Maldonado
Martin Maldonado
34-Year-Old CatcherC
Houston Astros
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Maldonado was signed by the Astros, who were paying for his glove and not his bat, and he manned the backstop for what would become more of a makeshift pitching staff than expected. From 2016-2019, Maldonado posted a wRC+ between 72 and 78, but he was a solid pitch framer and among the league leaders in defensive runs saves behind the plate. Small sample alert, but Maldonado's wRC+ leaped to 110, solely a result of a 16.4 BB%, more than twice his career mark. However, his defensive metrics slipped, but again it was only in a 60-game season. Even if Maldonado retains his newfound on-base ability, he remains tough to deploy in fantasy, especially since he's in danger of playing less as his defense can no longer overcome his weak run production. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#524
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $5 million contract extension with the Astros in April of 2021. Contract includes $4 million team option ($500,000 buyout) or a $5 million vesting option for 2023.
Reaches extension with Houston
CHouston Astros
April 21, 2021
Maldonado and the Astros agreed Wednesday on a one-year, $5 million contract extension, Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports. According to Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle, the deal includes a $4 million team option or a $500,000 buyout for 2023, with option vesting to $5 million if Maldonado plays at least 90 games in 2022.
ANALYSIS
Though he only recently began the second season of the two-year, $7 million deal he signed in the 2019-20 offseason, Maldonado has made a strong enough of an impression as a game caller and defender behind the plate during his time in Houston for the club to give him some extra security. The 34-year-old has been less dependable on the offensive end -- he's gone 3-for-34 with 17 strikeouts to begin 2021 -- but the Astros are able to live with his shortcomings in that area if he can continue to coax good results out of the team's pitching staff.
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Batting Stats
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2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
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Batting Order Slot Breakdown
vs Right-Handed Pitchers
vs RHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
1
4
vs Left-Handed Pitchers
vs LHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
1
4
Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+12%
OPS vs LHP
2021
 
 
+45%
OPS vs LHP
2020
 
 
+31%
OPS vs LHP
2019
 
 
+4%
OPS vs LHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .707 181 18 6 20 1 .235 .306 .401
Since 2019vs Right .631 394 49 12 31 0 .191 .294 .337
2021vs Left .286 14 1 0 0 0 .143 .143 .143
2021vs Right .197 26 1 0 0 0 .043 .154 .043
2020vs Left .869 53 4 2 12 1 .279 .404 .465
2020vs Right .662 108 15 4 12 0 .189 .318 .344
2019vs Left .690 114 13 4 8 0 .229 .281 .410
2019vs Right .662 260 33 8 19 0 .206 .298 .364
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+31%
OPS at Home
2021
 
 
+62%
OPS at Home
2020
 
 
+72%
OPS at Home
2019
 
 
+11%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home .746 282 38 12 34 1 .234 .319 .427
Since 2019Away .568 297 29 6 17 0 .175 .280 .288
2021Home .308 13 0 0 0 0 .154 .154 .154
2021Away .190 27 2 0 0 0 .042 .148 .042
2020Home .928 79 13 4 16 1 .288 .397 .530
2020Away .538 86 6 2 8 0 .145 .306 .232
2019Home .706 190 25 8 18 0 .219 .298 .408
2019Away .636 184 21 4 9 0 .207 .288 .348
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Stat Review
How does Martin Maldonado compare to other hitters?
This section compares his stats with all batting seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 400 plate appearances)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity and Barrels/PA % are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 400 PA) and Hard Hit Rate is benchmarked against last season's data (min 400 PA). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • BB/K
    Walk to strikeout ratio
  • BB Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a walk.
  • K Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a strikeout.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many of a batter’s balls in play go for hits.
  • ISO
    Isolated Power. Slugging percentage minus batting average. A computation used to measure a batter's raw power.
  • AVG
    Batting average. Hits divided by at bats.
  • OBP
    On Base Percentage. A measure of how often a batters reaches base. Roughly equal to number of times on base divided by plate appearances.
  • SLG
    Slugging Percentage. A measure of the batting productivity of a hitter. It is calculated as total bases divided by at bats.
  • OPS
    On base plus slugging. THe sum of a batter's on-base percentage and slugging percentage.
  • wOBA
    Weighted on-base average. Measures a player's overall offensive contributions per plate appearance. wOBA combines all the different aspects of hitting into one metric, weighting each of them in proportion to their actual run value.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Hard Hit Rate
    A measure of contact quality from Sports Info Solutions. This stat explains what percentage of batted balls were hit hard vs. medium or soft.
  • Barrels/PA
    The percentage of plate appearances where a batter had a batted ball classified as a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
BB/K
0.16
 
BB Rate
7.5%
 
K Rate
47.5%
 
BABIP
.167
 
ISO
.000
 
AVG
.081
 
OBP
.150
 
SLG
.081
 
OPS
.231
 
wOBA
.119
 
Exit Velocity
75.1 mph
 
Hard Hit Rate
16.7%
 
Barrels/PA
0.0%
 
Advanced Batting Stats
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Additional Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Batted Ball Stats
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Stats Vs Upcoming Pitchers
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Martin Maldonado
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
4 days ago
Erik Siegrist takes a look at the AL free-agent pool and sees a clear path to value for Willie Calhoun if he can get into a groove at the plate.
The Z Files: The Fallacy of Stabilization and an Early Look at Home Runs
12 days ago
Todd Zola offers some thoughts on early-season trends, including the home run surge led by Nick Castellanos and the Reds.
Bernie on the Scene: AL West Analysis & Predictions
24 days ago
Bernie Pleskoff analyzes each team in the AL West with grades for each player and predictions for the division. Do the Astros have enough to hold off the competition?
The Z Files: Candidates To Lose Homers With the New Baseball
34 days ago
Todd Zola tries to determine whose power numbers might be impacted the most by MLB's new baseball, and finds reason to be concerned about Cavan Biggio.
MLB: Clay Link's AL LABR Review
35 days ago
Clay Link reviews his draft in the AL-only League of Alternative Baseball Reality and ponders how Bobby Witt Jr. didn't end up on a roster.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
The catcher position as a whole got a lift in 2019, but Maldonado did not get the memo. He had pretty much the exact same season he had in 2017 and 2018, only this time his year was split between three teams (Royals, Cubs and Astros) instead of two as in 2018. Maldonado struck out 23% of the time and hit in the low-.200s with double-digit homers and middling run-production stats. His rate stats have been remarkably consistent, but consistently bad. His OPS has ranged from .627 to .683 over the last four seasons while his wRC+ has ranged from 72 to 78 in that time. Maldonado can still provide value behind the plate at 33 years old and his abilities on that side of the ball earned him a two-year, $7 million deal with Houston. Despite being atop the depth chart at press time, he can still reasonably go undrafted in 15-team, two-catcher mixed leagues.
Maldonado opened the 2018 season with the Angels before being traded to the Astros at the end of July with Los Angeles out of playoff contention. Overall it was another typical year for the veteran backstop, who provided elite defense behind the dish while struggling to produce on offense. After appearing in a career-high 137 games in 2017, Maldonado appeared in 119 contests in 2018, posting a combined .225/.276/.351 line with nine homers. His 2018 slash line was right in line with both his 2017 performance (.221/.276/.368) and his career slash line (.220/.289/.350), suggesting Maldonado's offensive production entering his age-32 season is unlikely to improve. That said, he was in the running to win a second consecutive American League Gold Glove, so Maldonado should see a sizable workload behind the plate after signing with Kansas City.
Maldonado's first season as a full-time starter went pretty much as expected; top-notch defense with inconsistent offense. After hitting a respectable .253/.313/.412 with nine homers in the first half of the season, he finished with a .221/.276/.368 line, dragged down by his second-half struggles (.183/.227/.312). The Angels attributed his drop-off to the increased workload, which is understandable given Maldonado led all catchers with 137 games caught despite having never played in more than 79 games in any season prior. However, the 31-year-old struggled to produce offensively even when his workload was reduced, hitting a combined .217/.299/.342 in five seasons (352 games) as the Brewers' backup. Still, he further solidified himself as one of the best defensive backstops in the game, earning his first American League Gold Glove, so he figures to reprise his role as the Angels' starting catcher in 2018.
Maldonado took over primary catching duties for the Brewers after they traded away Jonathan Lucroy, but he'll handle a new pitching staff in 2017 after getting traded to the Angels in December. Despite the extra opportunities, Maldonado showed little offensive upside last season. While he managed a career-best .332 on-base percentage thanks to a 13.8 percent walk rate, he still hasn't posted an OPS better than his .729 mark from his rookie year in 2012. Unless he shows signs of breaking that streak early in 2017, he's in danger of falling into a timeshare, though the Halos' willingness to part with Jett Bandy in order to get Maldonado could make him the bridge behind the plate until 2015 first-round pick Taylor Ward is deemed ready for the big leagues. Even with the potential for a full season as a starter in Anaheim, Maldonado's value is limited to deep leagues that require the use of two catchers.
Maldonado saw extended playing time this season due to some injury woes for regular starter Jonathan Lucroy, but Maldonado was largely unremarkable. In 79 games, the backstop slashed .210/.282/.293 with four homers and 22 RBI. His strong suits are his glove and game-calling ability, which bodes well for his chances to stay on the 25-man roster despite his hitting woes. However, as long as Lucroy stays healthy, Maldonado will probably remain a backup in 2016.
Maldonado worked as the backup behind starting catcher Jonathan Lucroy last season. Lucroy did not sit much, and Maldonado was limited to just 111 at-bats as a result, but he did post a respectable .707 OPS thanks to 11 walks and nine extra-base hits. Maldonado is a quality defensive catcher and under team control for several more years, so it would likely take an injury for him not to open next season as the Brewers’ backup catcher once again.
Maldonado is a valuable backup catcher thanks to his defense and game-calling abilities, but he struggled with the bat in 2013 while primarily seeing spot action with regular catcher Jonathan Lucroy healthy all season. Despite the struggles, Maldonado is young and cheap, so expect him to serve as the Brewers’ backup catcher again in 2014.
Known primarily as a defensive catcher and average prospect while in the minors, Maldonado rounded out his game last season in the most unlikely of places - Milwaukee. Maldonado filled in admirably in Jonathan Lucroy's absence and proved to be a more-than-capable backup catcher when Lucroy returned, finishing the season with a .266 batting average and eight home runs over 78 games. Maldonado will enter 2013 with the same backup job, but he will play more than your regular reserve catcher.
Maldonado is essentially the Brewers' third or fourth catcher, and will likely serve as organizational depth at Triple-A Nashville in 2012 with Jonathan Lucroy and George Kottaras in position to handle the big league staff.
More Fantasy News
Walks twice in return
CHouston Astros
April 21, 2021
Maldonado went 0-for-1 with two walks in Tuesday's 6-2 loss to Colorado.
ANALYSIS
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Starting Tuesday in Coors
CHouston Astros
April 20, 2021
Maldonado (COVID-19 injured list) is starting Tuesday in Colorado, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.
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On track to return Tuesday
CHouston Astros
Undisclosed
April 19, 2021
Maldonado is tentatively expected to be activated from the COVID-19 injured list ahead of Tuesday's series opener in Colorado, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.
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Begins individual workouts
CHouston Astros
Undisclosed
April 18, 2021
Astros manager Dusty Baker said Sunday that Maldonado (COVID-19 injured list) has been cleared to resume individual workouts, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports.
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Likely sidelined through road trip
CHouston Astros
Undisclosed
April 16, 2021
Maldonado (COVID-19 protocols) is unlikely to return during the Astros' current five-game road trip, Jake Kaplan of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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