Right-hander Taylor Jordan made a solid impression in his first season at the major league level after advancing two levels in 2013.
Jordan recovered nicely from Tommy John surgery and got off to a good start with high Single-A Potomac. In six starts, Jordan went 2-1 with a 1.24 ERA with 29 strikeouts and six walks in 36 1/3 innings.
After his promotion to Double-A Harrisburg, Jordan continued to pitch well. That is actually an understatement. He went 7-0 with an 0.83 ERA in eight starts (nine games) for the Senators. He struck out 43 and walked nine.
Potomac manager Brian Daubach said the seeds for the kind of player Jordan has grown into were sowed after he battled back from Tommy John surgery and learned how much work it would take to return to normal health and strength in his pitching arm.
"Yeah, it was quite a year for Taylor," Daubach said. "I had him two years ago. He was off and running. He made the All-Star team in Hagerstown and that is when the injury popped up. I know we have had recovery success in our organization with Tommy John, but it is still a lot of hard work.
"I think Taylor didn't realize that right away, but it helped him mature. It carried over to last year. He would get frustrated at times because he didn't think he wasn't getting back as quickly as he would like. That is part of the rehab process. For this year when he first started out with Potomac, he was lights out. Then he was promoted to Double-A and then getting to the big leagues this year, quite a year for Taylor."
Jordan went 1-3 with a 3.66 ERA in nine starts and 51 2/3 innings for the Nationals. He finished with 142 innings pitched this season.
Watching his work with the Nationals, you could see Jordan had the character and fortitude to come back from such an injury through his restlessness on the mound. Similar to Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann, Jordan loses the handcuffs of an innings limit next season. He will have an excellent opportunity to work on locking up a roster spot with the Nationals because of the experience built off of a meteoric rise in 2013.