Positives for 2023 Excited for 2024 – Naylor Brothers

September 17, 2023

Tony Camino

Guardians’ Brothers Fan Excitement for 2024 and Beyond!

While a lot has gone wrong in 2023, it wasn’t a lost season by any means. Injuries, offensive regression, and the challenge of balancing future prospects with contending this year really derailed the season. On the positive side, we’ve witnessed some young prospects stepping up and developing at the major league level.

Perhaps the most exciting young prospect of this season has been catcher Bo Naylor. Given the previous struggles and recent history of the Guardians’ catchers, how can we forget about the Mike Zunino adventure, there was considerable excitement surrounding Naylor. After a slow start, Bo Naylor has hit his stride late in the season and appears very comfortable.

Bo Naylor Numbers since July 1

  • 123 wRC+ in 158 PA
  • 7 home runs batting .248
  • .342 OBP with .471 slugging

While it wasn’t great from the outset, Bo Naylor has truly solidified himself as a cornerstone of this franchise. His brother, Josh, has been a mainstay in the lineup since joining the team in 2020. He had an okay start following the trade in 2020, but 2023 has seen his game elevate to the next level. With the role of protecting Jose Ramirez in the lineup, his presence has been unmistakably significant this year. Ramirez’s numbers suffered when Josh Naylor was out of the lineup, and his approach appeared rushed and overly aggressive.

Josh Naylor 2023

  • 128 wRC+ in 430 PA
  • 17 home runs batting .306
  • .347 OBP with .503 slugging

Josh Naylor has two more years of arbitration and is set to become an unrestricted free agent in 2026. Priority number one this offseason needs to be re-signing Josh Naylor, allowing him and Bo to play a significant role in the core alongside Jose Ramirez and Andres Gimenez. We’ve clearly witnessed the challenges this lineup faces when Josh Naylor is absent, and his presence in 2024 is essential for winning the AL Central.

Reminiscent of the days of Sandy and Roberto Alomar in Cleveland, Bo and Josh Naylor have the opportunity to excel on the field and become fan favorites off the field. Josh’s fire, passion, and unwavering support, combined with Bo’s relaxed, laid-back personality, make these two Canadian brothers very likable. More importantly, this season has shown that the two Naylors are among the most crucial hitters in the lineup, and they are the ones the organization should rely on to lead the offensive alongside Ramirez.

It has been a disappointing season for sure, but the emergence of Bo Naylor as a legitimate MLB catcher alongside Josh Naylor’s rise as an all-star caliber player provides hope for 2024 and beyond. They won’t be able to do it all by themselves, but penciling them into the lineup makes me optimistic about the team’s chances next season.

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