Guardians call up Bo Naylor for first time in ’23

May 21st, 2023

NEW YORK — When catcher Bo Naylor arrived in the visitors’ clubhouse at Citi Field on Sunday morning, he saw his last name on top of his locker stall. Or so he thought.

He soon realized the locker belonged to his older brother, Josh Naylor.

“I was about to set up shop, and then I saw ’22’ [Josh’s uniform number]. I backed away and figured out my own spot,” Bo said. “[Being together is] something we have been dreaming of a long time.”

Bo Naylor, the No. 4 prospect on the Guardians’ Top 30 list per MLB Pipeline, was the 27th man during the split doubleheader against the Mets on Sunday.

Naylor was having a good season at the plate for Triple-A Columbus, hitting .257 with nine home runs, 32 RBIs and a .391 on-base percentage.

However, Naylor has had problems throwing out baserunners, as they have stolen 42 bases in 49 attempts against him. But the numbers behind the plate don’t tell the whole story, according to Guardians manager Terry Francona.

“Swinging the bat, he has hit some home runs,” Francona said. “His throwing numbers are not very good. I think part of it [is] when you are in Triple-A sometimes, the pitchers are working on stuff, too. So they have been pretty slow to the plate.

“We tried to impress upon him not to get himself in habits where he is trying to do too much, being too quick, because he can catch and throw.”

Naylor said he has progressed mentally and physically as a ballplayer since making his Major League debut with the Guardians last October.

“I wanted to learn the mental side of the game, calling games, different thought processes at the plate whether it’s offense or defense, handling a staff and being an impactful player out there,” Naylor said. “That is something I wanted to be in this game. Day in and day out, I’m continuously working to be that.”