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Nationals’ top prospects fortified by “second wave” of talent

When the Nationals beat the New York Mets 6-4 on Monday with a roster filled with the future of the organization, the team’s development staff had to be beaming with a sense of pride and accomplishment. It wasn’t too long ago the Nationals would bring 80 guys to camp and didn’t know if they had a handful of major leaguers in that lot. The entire

Three Nationals prospects learning new spots as accelerated development program begins

The Nationals’ accelerated development roster confirmed the club’s confidence in positional changes for Justin Miller and Kevin Keyes. Miller and Keyes worked at new positions during October’s instructional league workouts. Miller switched from the infield to catcher and Keyes from the outfield to first base. Miller is listed as a catcher and Keyes as first baseman on the roster released last week for accelerated development

Why the Nationals have an accelerated development program

This week, the Nationals revealed their accelerated development roster. The intrasquad games with this roster begin around March 1. Some fans asked what is the accelerated development roster and what is its purpose? Nationals director of minor league operations Mark Scialabba says the development program has three main goals: 1. To place the Nationals’ top prospects on one roster for focused one-on-one work with the

Nationals release accelerated development roster

The Nationals have put together their list of prospects for the accelerated development program as they prepare to go to work next month in Viera, Fla. The pitchers listed include recently reacquired A.J. Cole, plus Lucas Giolito, Sammy Solis and Blake Schwartz. Justin Miller is listed as a catcher and Kevin Keyes as a first baseman after working those new positions in instructional league in

Nats center field prospects a “position of strength” with Perez and Goodwin leading way

I spoke last week about the acquisition of Denard Span and how it sets up a very good order of center fielders now throughout the Nationals system. Eury Perez, Brian Goodwin, Michael Taylor and Billy Burns have played well at each level of the system as they look to get better this season and move up. Goodwin was recognized this week as the No. 70

Baseball America ranks Rendon and two others on top 100 list

Baseball America’s latest top 100 prospect list features three of the Nationals’ hottest youngsters. Third baseman Anthony Rendon, right-hander Lucas Giolito and center fielder Brian Goodwin all rank in the top 70. Rendon is rated No. 30. The 2011 first-rounder has made big strides since last April’s ankle injury. With his consistent play in the Arizona Fall League adding to the at-bats he lost early

Nationals excited about Destin Hood’s “upside” in 2013

Right fielder Destin Hood would like nothing better than to have a full season with no nagging injuries or games missed due to sickness. Saddled with just 94 games played last season, Hood was never really able to get in the groove that he would’ve wanted at this point in his career. But he certainly finished 2012 with a flourish. On opening day this season,

Eury Perez adds depth to Nationals outfield, speed at Syracuse

The Nationals were able to sign center fielder Denard Span to be their leadoff hitter and complete their 2013 lineup. One player who got some time with the big club late in 2012 and could also someday fill that role for the Nationals is Eury Perez. The Dominican continued to play well in winter ball, as high Single-A Potomac Nationals manager Brian Daubach said here.

Lecroy: Rendon made nice strides in Harrisburg to help him prepare for 2013

According to a Houston media outlet during the 2012 season, there were reports that Nationals top prospect Anthony Rendon might not return to the field because of his recovery from an ankle injury. Third baseman Rendon suffered a fractured left ankle early in April for the high Single-A Potomac Nationals. But slowly and methodically, Rendon rehabbed that ankle and was able to resume baseball late

Meyers’ deception could be key change of pace

The Nationals got Brad Meyers back from the Yankees, who took him in the Rule 5 draft and then returned him. Meyers pitched only one game last year after an early-season workout injury shelved his season. Now he is good to go and is excited to be back with the Nationals’ organization. Triple-A Syracuse manager Tony Beasley had Meyers at Double-A Harrisburg a couple of

Nationals want Goodwin to focus on bunting, baserunning

Left-handed-hitting Brian Goodwin made a big jump last season from low Single-A Hagerstown to Double-A Harrisburg. The 22-year-old continued his baseball education in the Arizona Fall League and was a standout in the Rising Stars game. Goodwin homered, doubled and had two RBIs in the East’s 9-4 win over the West. Harrisburg manager Matt Lecroy said the number of reps, at-bats and games Goodwin played

Corey Brown looking to crack Nationals’ talented outfield

Outfielder Corey Brown is vying for a spot on the Nationals’ 25-man roster this spring. The 27-year-old showed well in last season’s call-up. He got attention with a nice series in Milwaukee in late July. Brown went 3-for-9 with three runs, one double, one homer and one RBI on July 28-29. His first major league hit was a home run,a solo shot over the left-center

Cardinals’ Carpenter always seemed to have the Nationals’ number

With the news that right-hander Chris Carpenter is unlikely to pitch in 2013, one of the toughest pitchers in the majors the past 15 years might be close to retirement. Carpenter has pitched in 350 games with 332 starts, winning 144 games with a consistent .605 winning percentage. How consistent? According to Baseball Reference, Carpenter’s winning percentage was exactly .605 for the first half (75-49)

Nats’ minor league rosters slowly being filled in

With spring training just around the corner, the makeup of the some of the minor league rosters are starting to take shape as names are quietly appearing on the Web sites of Nationals affiliates. For the Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs, pitchers Yunesky Maya, Jeff Mandel, Pat Lehman, Brad Meyers, Hassan Pena and Tanner Roark are familiar. Also on the list is right-hander Matt Torra. Torra, out

Comparing Span and Werth’s numbers as leadoff hitters in 2012

The Nationals traded for center fielder Denard Span to be their leadoff man for 2013. This will give right fielder Jayson Werth a chance to move down in the lineup. Although the sample sizes are different because Span was the leadoff man three times more than Werth, it is interesting to see how close the numbers are for two very different styles. Obviously, the power

Nationals relievers’ acceptance of new roles key to matching Braves bullpen

In 2012, the Nationals watched from their own division as the Atlanta Braves put together a final inning formula for shutting down opponents. With Eric O’Flaherty, Jonny Venters and Craig Kimbrel, the Braves had the seventh, eighth and ninth innings effectively extinguished for opposing hitters. And with the Braves’ starting staff needing only to get through the sixth frame, the game was shortened to those

Zimmerman’s move to first base a long way off

Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman had four cortisone shots during the 2012 season as he battled inflammation in his right shoulder. Despite a slow start because of that aching shoulder, Zimmerman came on strong to finish with a .282 average, 25 homers and 95 RBIs. He also hit .381 in five games versus St. Louis in the National League Division Series. That critical third cortisone

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