2014 Outlook: More defensive- than offensive-minded catcher, Castillo nevertheless showed some promise during the second half of 2013, his first year as a full-time big-league catcher. He batted .288/.388/.475 with six home runs in 44 games after the All-Star break, chasing 6 percent fewer pitches outside the strike zone and hitting 7 percent more fly balls; that gave hope he could, in Chicago, match his .267/.343/.488 rates and 19 home runs per 100 games played at the Triple-A level. He's more of an NL-only than mixed-league asset, but with a hot start to 2014, he could be a handy No. 2 option in the latter, with a tick more value in on-base percentage leagues.
2014 Outlook: A torn ACL suffered during a mid-July collision at the plate ended Grandal's 2013 prematurely, but as 2014 camps dawned, all indications were that he should be fully healed from surgery either on, or shortly after, Opening Day. The San Diego Padres will surely take a conservative approach to his rehabilitation, perhaps putting him on the DL and/or sending him for minor league seasoning initially, but Grandal remains the clear future for this team behind the plate. His keen batting eye makes him a sneaky future source of batting average and on-base percentage, and with further promising reports on his health in March, he might be quite the No. 2 catcher stash in NL-only leagues. Stephania Bell: Collisions at the plate like the one that ended Grandal's 2013 campaign, which resulted in a torn right ACL and MCL, are the reason that rules change. He has made excellent strides and wants to be behind the plate Opening Day, but the team will ultimately make the call, based on how his knee progresses through spring training.
Addendum (3/12): Grandal has begun playing in spring training games making an Opening Day return a possibility. But he still has to demonstrate he can handle the workload of a full game without issue.
2014 Outlook: It may take a few weeks, but Pacheco is expected to regain catcher eligibility, spelling Wilin Rosario once or twice a week. While he won't provide much in the way of production, Pacheco makes good contact so he won't damage your average. You'll need an option to use in the interim, but once he gains catcher eligibility, Pacheco is the ideal won't-hurt-you type as a second receiver in NL-only formats.
2014 Outlook: Lobaton's role as Jose Molina's platoon partner came to an end after Tampa acquired Ryan Hanigan. But Lobaton's improved 2013 campaign impressed Washington enough to trade for Lobaton to be the backup to Wilson Ramos. Barring an injury to Ramos, Lobaton won't get the same playing time as last season, yielding him waiver-wire fodder even in deep leagues using two catchers.
2014 Outlook: A polished defensive prospect, Bethancourt makes a lot of sense for the Atlanta Braves as a backup/part-time catcher, even right at the start of 2014. They'll have offensively oriented Evan Gattis as their projected starter and light-hitting Gerald Laird as his backup; Bethancourt is a nice blend of their collective talents, possessing a strong arm, contact-hitting ability and a hint of pop. He'll need to prove his worth to make the team and be a viable No. 2 catcher in NL-only formats, but it's possible he'll emerge as one by year's end at the latest.
2014 Outlook: Don't be fooled by his .282 and .281 batting averages of the past two seasons; Laird is your typical all-glove, no-bat backup backstop. He's in a prime spot to secure a respectable number of at-bats, as the caddy for all-bat, no-glove catchers Evan Gattis and Ryan Doumit, but if his .320 BABIP corrects, that might actually harm more than help those NL-only owners desperate enough to grab him as a No. 2 option.