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Draft Strategy

Showdown: Realmuto vs. Sanchez

by NBC Sports EDGE Staff
Updated On: February 27, 2020, 5:06 pm ET

Often in the midst of your draft, you’ll find yourself deciding between a couple players at the same position. With Player Showdowns, we take two players who are closely ranked and have writers take a side and debate who should be selected first. Whose side will you be on?

We’ll offer up one Showdown per position (catcher, first base, second base, shortstop, third base, outfield, starter and reliever) here, and you can get dozens more by purchasing the 2020 Rotoworld Baseball Draft Guide. It’s an essential weapon to have in your arsenal at the draft table this spring.

J.T. Realmuto vs. Gary Sanchez


It's not terribly difficult to make the argument for Sanchez over Realmuto. Sanchez is going to provide more homers and more RBI as long as he stays healthy. But if I have to have one catcher, I'm taking Realmuto. He's far more likely to hit for average than Sanchez, and the on-base percentage is likely to be a few points higher as well. There's also the fact that Realmuto is capable of providing 8 to 12 steals a season, while Sanchez has four steals in five seasons combined. It's a little thing, but it's just another little separator. The other issue I have with Sanchez is health; he's gone over 500 plate appearances once, while Realmuto has hit that mark in three of his four seasons. These are clearly the top two catching options in baseball, but I think Sanchez is a good notch below Realmuto, at least to start 2020. – Christopher Crawford (@Crawford_MILB)


There’s no doubt that Realmuto is the safer pick here. Heck, I’ll admit that he might even be the smarter pick, too. The reason I give Sanchez an edge by the slightest of margins is that he possesses unquestionably the highest upside at the catcher position. It’s a position that was surprisingly potent in fantasy last year, which gives me some hope that, when Sanchez misses some time with an inevitable injury, I will be able to find a fill-in capable of keeping me afloat. I’m betting that that replacement combined with Sanchez’s unmatched power at the position will give me a higher ceiling than the safety Realmuto provides. In the unlikely event that Sanchez stays healthy all season – and, hey, he is reportedly in the Best Shape of His Life – he’s a slam dunk to be the top-scoring fantasy catcher. – Ryan Boyer (@RyanPBoyer)

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