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Catcher Outliers: Daulton Varsho

by NBC Sports EDGE Staff
Updated On: February 23, 2021, 3:31 pm ET

To celebrate both baseball's return and the launch of our 2021 MLB Draft Guide, we're going to be taking looks at what we have to offer all the way up to Opening Day. With a loaded arsenal of content -- from positional rankings, ADP reports and season-long projections, to mock drafts, projected lineups and draft cheat sheets -- we are as proud as we've ever been of what we've put together and are eager to share it with you in the coming weeks. No matter the format or size of your league, we are confident we can deliver the tools you need to secure that championship hardware.

Today, we'll be giving you a look at the guide's exclusive positional outlier column series with the below excerpt from the Catcher Outliers.

Player Bissell Boyer Crawford Johnson Montanez Pouliot Short Shovein Silva Williams Staff Composite
Daulton Varsho 3 12 12 11 15 10 20 13 16 20 13 13.2


George Bissell had Daulton Varsho 3. The composite ranking was 13.2.

This extremely bullish ranking reflects the astronomical value of double-digit stolen base contributors in the current fantasy landscape, which remains utterly devoid of speedsters and impact talent at the catcher position. Even with an extremely conservavtive playing time forecast, Varsho projects as a legitimate upper-echelon fantasy backstop from a pure valuation standpoint, thanks to his ability to swipe at least 10 bases this season; a feat accomplished by only two catchers -- J.T. Realmuto (2016) and Yadier Molina (2012) -- over the last decade. He’ll likely open the year in the minor leagues, but the 24-year-old’s defensive versatility and elite prospect status should create multiple avenues to regular playing time at some point in Arizona. Here’s an oversimplification: Varsho possesses enough raw athleticism to record double-digit steals in fewer than 350 plate appearances. The value of those stolen bases alone is enough to propel him into elite territory among catcher-eligible options. Simply put, Varsho doesn’t need to be a power/speed combo fantasy superstar to justify this ranking, he merely needs to carve out enough playing time to eclipse the 10-steal threshold. – George Bissell (@GeorgeBissell)

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