Catcher Pickoff Leaders

September 10, 2009

Over the last several seasons, no one compares. Yadier Molina has nabbed more baserunners who fell asleep on the bases than any other catcher by a wide margin. Here are the leaders in catcher pickoffs since 2003:

Most Catcher Pickoffs
(Since 2003)
Player Pickoffs
Yadier Molina 33
Miguel Olivo 19
Jose Molina 17
Ivan Rodriguez 13
Jeff Mathis 11

How much is that helping his team? In The Fielding Bible—Volume II, we spent a considerable amount of time and effort on translating catcher defense into Defensive Runs Saved. We are now adding catcher pickoffs as an additional element. Based on analyzing run values, each catcher pickoff is estimated to save the team .46 runs. Over the years, Molina's 33 pickoffs are worth 15 runs. Once again, no one compares to Yadier:

Defensive Runs Saved Leaders—Catchers
(Since 2003)
Player Runs Saved
Yadier Molina 45
Jose Molina 35
Ivan Rodriguez 35
Gerald Laird 23
Paul Lo Duca 21

In 2009, the Yadier version of the Molina brothers is once again doing well, currently tied for third in most defensive Runs Saved at catcher. Here are the 2009 Runs Saved leaders for catchers, now including catcher pickoffs:

Defensive Runs Saved Leaders—Catchers
(2009 through September 10)
Player Runs Saved
Koyie Hill 8
Rob Johnson 8
Yadier Molina 4
Russell Martin 4
Kenji Johjima 4
Miguel Montero 4
Jeff Mathis 4
Joe Mauer 4
David Ross 4
Eliezer Alfonzo 4


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