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Prospect Report: Tyler Naquin, OF, Cleveland Indians

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Tyler Naquin
Tyler Naquin
Phil Sears, USA Today Sports

Did the Indians overdraft Tyler Naquin in the first round last June?

Tyler Naquin, OF, Cleveland Indians
Bats: L Throws: R HT: 6-2 WT: 175 DOB: April 24, 1991

Naquin was drafted in the first round last June, 15th overall. I got to see a lot of him in college for Texas A&M and there were many things I liked, starting with a good, easy, repeatable, consistent line drive swing. He handles fastballs and breaking balls well, and while not a walk machine, he shows an eye for the zone and makes persistent solid contact. He has a very strong throwing arm, powerful and accurate. I thought his speed was just a tick above average and not as impressive as the 21 steals for the Aggies might lead you to believe. On the negative side, Naquin doesn't have much home run power and in my view isn't likely to develop much. If he can hit .300+ at higher levels and get on base, he could be a regular even without big power, but if his batting average dips into the .270 range, he's more of a fourth outfield type. He didn't play enough in the New York-Penn League for us to make a valid sabermetric projection either way, so for now we have to be patient and see what happens. Grade B-.

Personally I think he was overdrafted to some extent. I like Naquin, but there are enough questions about his bat that I think he would have fit better in the supplemental round. Just my opinion of course.