The Cleveland Guardians made a flurry of roster moves on Saturday. For starters, they activated SP Zach Plesac from the IL and DFA’d RP Bryan Shaw, per Zach Meisel. The Guardians then added one of MLB’s top catching prospects, and the brother of 1B/DH Josh Naylor, Bo Naylor to the active big league roster. Finally, Cleveland optioned INF Tyler Freeman.
Zach Plesac will likely replace Bryan Shaw in the bullpen for the MLB playoffs. The Guardians have Shane Bieber, Triston McKenzie, and Cal Quantrill to pitch in the Wild Card series. If they advance Aaron Civale would become the presumed No. 4 starter. With teams only starting 4 pitchers in the MLB Playoffs, Plesac will likely be utilized in the ‘pen.
However, Plesac will finish the regular season in the starting rotation.
Bo Naylor is the Guardians top catching prospect. Meanwhile, Tyler Freeman is the team’s top overall prospect. But Cleveland has a plethora of infielders on the roster and catching depth will be more valuable moving forward. The demotion of Freeman is not a direct result of his on-field performance, but rather a necessary roster move ahead of the postseason.
Naylor is a 22-year old catcher with power from the left-side of the plate. There have been rumors about Bo Naylor switching positions in order to maximize his offensive potential. But the Guardians will keep him behind the plate for now.
If Bo Naylor can produce similar results to Josh Naylor from an offensive standpoint, Cleveland will be more than content. Josh is approaching 20 home runs on the season and has produced some of the Guardians’ most clutch moments of the year.