Winning 32% of the vote – a narrow 4% lead over runner-up Brayan Rocchio – Bo Naylor is our number 5 in Cleveland for 2021.
The young brother of current Cleveland outfielder Josh Naylor, 20-year-old Bo, excelled in the rookie ball during his first professional season. He walked 21 times in 117 bats and hit .274 / .381 / .402. He also played well in Single-A, racking up 11 home runs, 43 walks and 18 doubles in 107 games for the Lake County Captains. That’s a 110 wRC + for a 19 year old in a year-round ball – a catcher, no less.
Naylor is expected to stay with the catcher, but he doesn’t rate him as outstanding. If nothing philosophically changes within the Cleveland organization – or Naylor proves to be an exceptional framer and game caller – he may not have the tools Cleveland is looking for in the long term. However, if he gets back on his racket early during his minor league career, he may be able to break a defensive average on his way to a staple in Cleveland.
Offensively, Naylor’s greatest attribute is his power, but a grooved swing can limit his overall hit tool. However, he’s a projectable dream just entering his 20-year season and with a bat that can already hit bombs and an older brother also in the majors to whom he can be compared.
In one Scouting report he did on himself (The full article on MLB.com is worth reading and gives a good insight into Naylor’s character and feel for the game.) Naylor described himself as having a compact torso, big chest, and muscular arms. He also noted that he has a “balanced” and “patient” approach, which is probably not entirely wrong. After all, he went 15% of the time in the rookie ball and almost 10% of the time in the single-A – the only real gap in his offensive gap is actually getting his bat into those places. So far, he seems to be able to read them as well as one would expect from a 19 or 20 year old.
FanGraphs expects Naylor to debut in 2023, which sounds about right. He’ll likely start high-A (now the Lake County Captains) this year and continue to hit big minor league things.
Gabriel Arias, SS (20 years)
2019 (A + San Diego): 511 PA, .302. / 339 / .470, 17 HR, 8 SB, 4.9.8 BB%, 25.0 K%, 120 wRC +
Arias is a serious pop midfielder, despite having to do with his patience with plate selection and pitch.
Aaron Bracho, 2B (19 years)
2019 (R): 137 PA, .296 / .416 / .593, 6 HR, 4 SB, 16.8 BB%, 15.3 K%, 162 wRC +
2019 (A-): 32 PA, .222 / .344 / .481, 2 HR, 0 SB, 15.6 BB%, 25.0 K%, 141 wRC +
The injury kept him from making his debut in 2018, but the native DR made up for it in 2019 by rebuilding his hype by posting incredible numbers on the AZL and receiving a promotion to the Mahoning Valley.
Daniel Espino, RHP (20 years)
2019 (R): 6 GS, 13.2 IP, 30.2 K%, 9.4 BB%, 1.98 ERA, 4.20 FIP
2019 (A-): 3 GS, 10.0 IP, 40.0 K%, 11.1 BB%, 6.30 ERA, 2.60 FIP
The 2019 first-round election knocked out a third of the batters he faced in rookie ball and only got more deadly in Low-A as a 19-year-old. Fastball sits in its upper 90s and occasionally touches three-digit numbers. The first Tribe Prep prospect to get a promotion in the season he was drafted since Francisco Lindor.
Ethan Hankins, RHP (20 years)
2019 (A-): 8 GS, 38.2 IP, 27.9 K%, 11.7 BB%, 1.40 ERA, 3.22 FIP
2019 (A): 5 GS, 21.1 IP, 29.8 K%, 12.8 BB%, 4.64 ERA, 4.80 FIP
Exceeds 97 mph with strike material, but command problems and injuries have slowed its development.
Brayan Rocchio, SS (19 years)
2019 (A-): 295 PA, .250 / .310 / .373, 5 HR, 14 SB, 6.8 BB%, 13.6 K%, 107 wRC +
One of the best shortstop prospects in the tribe system. Advanced for his age and possesses the tools to be a big part of the future of the tribe, though he doesn’t have to play a season ball just yet.
Who should be Cleveland’s number 6?
49 votes in total