Ohio State football standout Jaxon Smith-Njigba is expected to be among the top NFL Draft prospects next season. Some even have Ohio State’s record-breaking receiver as the first receiver taken in the 2023 NFL Draft.
But he won’t beat his brother to the big leagues.
Smith-Njigba’s older brother Canaan Smith-Njigba is likely to make his Major League Baseball debut this week for the Pittsburgh Pirates. According to reports, the Pirates, who entered the week in third-place in the National League Central standings with a 24-34 record, are calling up the 23-year-old outfielder.
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Canaan Smith-Njigba was a star at Rockwall-Heath High School in the Dallas, Texas area, while Jaxon Smith-Njigba attended Rockwall High School.
Here’s what we know about Canaan Smith-Njigba.
Canaan Smith-Njigba is a Pirates top prospect
Canaan Smith-Njigba is the No. 21-ranked Pirates prospect by MLB.com this season. He was batting .277 with 15 doubles and 51 hits in 52 games in Triple-A this season.
Canaan Smith-Njigba just played the Columbus Clippers
Canaan Smith-Njigba went 3-for-5 with two RBI and a triple on June 11 against the Columbus Clippers. Indianapolis won 12-7. The Clippers won Sunday 11-5.
Canaan Smith-Njigba was committed to Arkansas to play baseball
Canaan Smith-Njigba was head to Arkansas to play baseball, but after a standout senior year in 2017 he chose to sign an MLB contract after being drafted.
Canaan Smith-Njigba was drafted by the New York Yankees in 2017
Canaan Smith-Njigba was the 122nd pick in the 2017 MLB Draft. The fourth-round pick was taken by the New York Yankees.
He spent three years in the Yankees minor league organization, reaching Single High-A.
Canaan Smith-Njigba was traded to Pirates for Jameson Taillon
The Yankees traded Canaan Smith-Njigba along with Miguel Yajure, Roansy Contreras and Maikol Escotto to the Pirates for Jameson Taillon.
He played in Double-A and Triple-A last season.
Did Jaxon Smith-Njigba play baseball in high school?
Jaxon Smith-Njigba was one of the top football recruits in the state of Texas in the class of 2020.
He was an Army All-American, the Texas Class 6A (the largest class in Texas) Player of the Year and was a unanimous top-five recruit in the football-rich state of Texas.
But he did not play baseball like his brother in high school.