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2003 Draft:
Top Prospects by Position: Catchers

After Joe Mauer went No. 1 overall in 2001, there hasn't been a catcher who has been a sure first-round pick since. The first two catchers chosen last year, Jeremy Brown (supplemental first round, Athletics) and Joey Votto (second round, Reds), were signability choices who didn't go as high as they did on pure ability. For a team that values polished college players with a track record of excellent performance, it's possible that Mitch Maier could go before the second round begins. But as much as his offensive skills and athleticism stand out, he's not a good receiver and eventually could wind up in the outfield. Though Jarrod Saltalamacchia has the best all-around package of skills, he has performed better in showcases than in games. Because there's a general shortage of backstops, the consensus is that several of them could go in the second and third rounds—two to three rounds earlier for where they might go based purely on merit.

Strength of Position (1-to-5 scale): 3.
Best hitters: 1. Mitch Maier. 2. Daric Barton. 3. Ryan Garko. 4. Steve Lerud. 5. Jake Fox.
Best defensive players: 1. Tony Richie. 2. Javi Herrera. 3. Landon Powell. 4. Scott Leffler. 5. C.J. Bressoud.
Best athletes: 1. Mitch Maier. 2. Todd Jennings. 3. Trent Kline. 4. Rick Guarno. 5. Jordan Newton.

 

Rank

Player

High School/College

Class

Age

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

1.

Mitch Maier

U. of Toledo

Jr.

20

L-R

6-2

195

2.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia

Royal Palm Beach HS, West Palm Beach, Fla.

Sr.

18

B-R

6-4

195

3.

Javi Herrera

U. of Tennessee

Jr.

21

R-R

6-2

190

4.

Landon Powell

U. of South Carolina

Jr.

21

B-R

6-3

230

5.

Colt Morton

North Carolina State U.

Jr.

21

R-R

6-5

225

6.

Daric Barton

Marina HS, Huntington Beach, Calif.

Sr.

17

L-R

5-11

195

7.

Tony Richie

Florida State U.

Jr.

21

R-R

6-1

215

8.

Trent Kline

West York HS, York, Pa.

Sr.

18

B-R

5-10

170

9.

Steve Lerud

Galena HS, Reno, Nev.

Sr.

18

L-R

6-1

205

10.

Jake Fox

U. of Michigan

Jr.

20

R-R

5-11

210

11.

Lou Palmisano

Broward (Fla.) CC

So.

20

R-R

6-1

185

12.

C.J. Bressoud

North Cobb HS, Kennesaw, Ga.

Sr.

18

R-R

6-2

185

13.

Cody Collet

Newbury Park (Calif.) HS

Sr.

18

R-R

6-0

195

14.

Blake Murphy

Tuscola HS, Waynesville, N.C.

Sr.

R-R

6-2

200

15.

Justin Brashear

Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La.

Sr.

17

L-R

6-3

200

16.

Scott Leffler

Dunedin HS, St. Petersburg, Fla.

Sr.

18

R-R

6-2

175

17.

Ryan Garko

Stanford U.

Sr.

22

R-R

6-1

220

18.

Todd Jennings

Long Beach State U.

Jr.

21

R-R

6-0

190

19.

Rick Guarno

U. of Arkansas-Little Rock

Jr.

20

R-R

6-0

185

20.

David Castillo

Oral Roberts U.

Sr.

20

R-R

5-9

180

21.

J.R. Towles

Collin County (Texas) CC

Fr.

19

R-R

6-1

180

22.

Rob Johnson

Saddleback (Calif.) JC

So.

19

R-R

6-1

195

23.

Nick Stavinoha

San Jacinto (Texas) JC

So.

21

R-R

6-2

215

24.

Matt Lauderdale

College of Charleston

Sr.

22

R-R

5-10

205

25.

Matt Pagnozzi

Central Arizona JC

So.

20

R-R

6-2

205

26.

Bryan Opdyke

Catalina Foothills HS, Fort Mohave, Ariz.

Sr.

18

L-R

6-2

190

27.

Charlie Waite

U. of Mississippi

Sr.

22

R-R

6-1

186

28.

Jordan Newton

Larue County HS, Hodgenville, Ky.

Sr.

R-R

5-10

185

29.

Brian Walker

Union HS, Tulsa, Okla.

Sr.

L-R

6-0

185

30.

John Juergens

Bradley HS, Bourbonnais, Ill.

Sr.

18

R-R

6-2

215

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