After being selected 459th overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in last summer’s amateur draft Ryan Noda put up Bo Bichette like numbers in his first taste of professional baseball and for those accomplishments, Noda ranks 27th on the Jays Journal 2018 Top Prospects Rankings.
The 21-year old left-hander attended the University of Cincinnati where he honed his craft for three seasons prior to being drafted by the Jays. Noda hit .239/.370/.430 while swatting 22 round trippers in 167 collegiate contests with the Bearcats.
Name: Ryan Noda
Position: 1B/OF Age: 21
Height: 6’3″ Weight: 217 lbs
Throws: Left Bats: Left
Acquired: 15th round draft pick in 2017
Noda who is a first baseman by trade can also hold his own in the outfield made short work of Appalachian League pitching in his first 66 games with the Bluefield Blue Jays. The 6’3″ lefty hit .364/.507/.575 while smashing 7 homers and swiping 7 bags in 66 games during his rookie campaign.
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The rookie didn’t stop there as Noda also displayed the ability to work the count and draw his share of free passes walking a team-leading 59 times. He also tagged opposition hurlers for 28 hits of the extra base variety including 18 doubles.
Noda spent the majority of last season manning first base (48 games) however did play all three outfield positions albeit for a limited amount of time (RF-10 games, CF-1 game, LF-1 game). The promising talent had impressive splits last season hitting .378 versus right-handers and .310 against southpaws. He also was 20 for 50 (.400) with 15 runs batted in and 16 walks with runners in scoring position and 2 outs.
The youngster takes professional at-bats with the ability to hit the ball to all fields for power while working the count. Noda has major league power and once hit a ball off the roof during his collegiate career.
I am not sure anyone expected Noda to put up the numbers he did in Bluefield however if he gets off to a similar start again in 2018 look for him to garner some recognition and shoot up the organizational prospect rankings. This is definitely an under the radar prospect worth keeping an eye on as the summer progresses.