Naylor complied an impressive amateur resume, winning MVP awards with the Canadian junior national team in 2017 and 2018 and reaching the High School Home Run Derby finals at the 2017 All-Star Game. He went 29th overall in the 2018 Draft, making him and his brother Josh (12th overall to the Marlins in 2015) the first Canadian sibling to both become first-round picks. Signed for an above-slot $2,578,137, he has taken to becoming a full-time catcher more quickly than expected.
Naylor's bat is what made him a first-rounder, with scouts considering him one of the best pure hitters in the 2018 prep class. He has a quick left-handed swing and manipulates the barrel well, using the whole field with a disciplined approach. His bat speed and strength give him at least solid raw power, and his hitting ability should allow him to make the most of it.
Quicker than most catchers, Naylor led the low Class A Midwest League with 10 triples in 2019. His receiving was better than advertised and he threw out 37 percent of basestealers, though he'll need to improve his mechanics to get the most out of his solid arm strength. The downside to keeping him behind the plate is that the wear and tear will take a toll on his considerable offensive upside.
Scouting grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 50 | Run: 50 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50 | Overall: 50
While Naylor (29th overall in 2018) didn't go as early in the first round of the Draft as his brother, Josh (12th overall to the Marlins in '15), he has a higher ceiling because he's a better pure hitter and much more athletic. He compiled an impressive amateur resume that includes MVP Awards with the Canadian junior national team in 2017 and '18, and a trip to the Junior Home Run Derby finals in '17. After Naylor signed for an above-slot $2,578,138, he performed as advertised in his pro debut.
One of the best pure hitters among high schoolers in the 2018 Draft, Naylor has a quick left-handed swing and advanced feel for the barrel. He controls the strike zone and uses the entire field, exhibiting no obvious shortcomings at the plate. While he focuses on making hard contact rather than worrying about home runs, his strength and hitting ability should translate into average or better power.
Naylor's considerable offensive upside presents a bit of a dilemma, because Cleveland's current plan to keep him at catcher will take a toll on his bat and add to the development time he'll need in the Minors. He's quicker than most backstops and has a solid arm, though he'll need to improve his throwing accuracy and bolster his receiving skills to stay behind the plate. He has enough arm and agility for third base, where he played for Team Canada, and may be worth a try at second base.
Scouting grades: Hit: 50 | Power: 55 | Run: 40 | Arm: 55 | Field: 45 | Overall: 50
The younger brother of Padres first-base prospect Josh Naylor, Noah has a similar offensive profile to his sibling, but with one difference in his overall game: his ability to catch. His combination of a power bat and power arm were on display over the summer and was watched carefully when the Canadian high schoolers started playing this spring. Intrigued by his potential on both sides of the ball, the Indians kicked off their impressive 2018 Draft by nabbing Naylor with the No. 29 overall pick and then signed him for $2,578,138, more than $245,000 above his slot's recommend value.
Naylor's power was on full display at Marlins Park in Miami as Major League Baseball's All-Star Break commenced. On the Sunday morning before the Futures Game his brother would play in, Naylor out-homered future Cardinals first-rounder Nolan Gorman in the annual High School Home Run Derby and got to take hacks in between rounds of the big league derby. In game action, he's shown an advanced feel to hit, giving him the chance to hit for average and power. His defensive game is a bit behind his bat, outside of his arm, which is a plus tool that helps control a running game.
Naylor made strides in his defensive work during the spring, but he'll need to improve his overall receiving skills to show he can stick as a catcher. Naylor did play some third base during the Area Code Games and showed some agility there, and there's always the chance he could join his brother among the first base ranks. For now, however, the Indians will give Naylor every chance to stick behind the plate, where his bat offers the most upside.