Nationals get top prospects, veteran Voit for Soto, Bell

The Washington Nationals have acquired top prospects shortstop C.J. Abrams, left-handed pitcher MacKenzie Gore, outfielder Robert Hassell III, outfielder James Wood and right-handed pitcher Jarlin Susana as well as Major League first baseman/designated hitter Luke Voit from the San Diego Padres in exchange for outfielder Juan Soto and first baseman Josh Bell on Tuesday. Nationals President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo made the announcement. 

Abrams, 21, was San Diego’s No. 1 prospect and the No. 9 prospect in all of baseball entering the 2022 season, according to both Baseball America and MLBPipeline.com. He was cited by Baseball America as being the “best hitter” and having the “best speed” in all of Minor League baseball entering the 2022 season.

Abrams made San Diego’s Opening Day roster and his Major League debut this season, starting the second game of the season at shortstop. He hit .232 with five doubles, two home runs, 11 RBI, four walks, one stolen base and 16 runs scored in 45 games across two Major League stints with the Padres this season.

A left-handed hitting shortstop, Abrams hit .314 with four doubles, one triple, seven homers, 28 RBI, eight walks, 10 stolen bases and 35 runs scored in 30 games for Triple-A El Paso in between Major League stints. In 106 games across three Minor League seasons (2019, 2021-2022), Abrams has hit .334/.388/.522 with 31 doubles, nine triples, 12 homers, 73 RBI, 34 walks, 38 stolen bases and 102 runs scored.

The 6-foot-2, 189-pound Abrams was selected to represent the Padres in the 2021 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. He has been cited by Baseball America as the “best defensive infielder” (2021, 2022), “best athlete” (2020-22), “fastest baserunner” (2020-22) and “best hitter for average” (2020-2022) in San Diego’s Minor League system throughout his professional career. Following the 2019 season, he was named the Most Valuable Player in the rookie-level Arizona League and to Baseball America’s Rookie All-Star team.

A native of Atlanta, Ga., Abrams was selected by San Diego No. 6 overall in the 2019 First-Year Player Draft from Blessed Trinity Catholic (GA) High School. He was named the 2019 Georgia Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year and the No. 2 high school prospect in the 2019 Draft according to Baseball America and Perfect Game.

Gore, 23, was San Diego’s No. 4 prospect entering the 2022 season, according to both Baseball America and MLBPipeline.com, and the No. 86 prospect in all of baseball according to MLBPipeline.com. He rose to the consensus top prospect in San Diego’s system in 2020 and 2021, and entering the 2021 season, was rated by MLBPipeline.com as the No. 6 prospect in all of baseball and by Baseball America as No. 10.

The No. 3 overall selection in the 2017 First-Year Player Draft, Gore made his Major League debut in 2022, going 4-4 with a 4.50 ERA in 16 games (13 starts) for the Padres. He struck out 72 batters in 70.0 innings pitched. Gore struck out 10 batters on two occasions, April 27 at Cincinnati and June 4 at Milwaukee.

The 6-foot-2, 192-pound Gore is 12-11 with a 2.79 ERA in 56 career Minor League starts. He has recorded 311 strikeouts against just 81 walks while holding opposing batters to a .208 average along the way. A native of Whiteville, N.C., and graduate of Whiteville High School, Gore was selected to represent the Padres in the 2019 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game.

Hassell III, 20, is the No. 21 prospect in baseball according to MLBPipeline.com and No. 25 according to Baseball America. He is currently the top prospect in San Diego’s system according to MLBPipeline.com and their No. 2 prospect according to Baseball America. For the past two seasons, Baseball America has cited him as having the “best outfield arm,” “best strike-zone discipline” and as the “best defensive outfielder” in San Diego’s Minor League system.

The 6-foot-2, 195-pound outfielder was selected to participate in the 2022 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. He is hitting .299 with 19 doubles, one triple, 10 homers, 55 RBI, 38 walks, 20 stolen bases and 49 runs scored in 75 games for High-A Fort Wayne. At 20 years old – one of the youngest players in the Midwest League – Hassell III ranks among Midwest League hitters in average (4th .299), hits (T4th, 91), RBI (T4th, 55), on-base percentage (9th, .379) and OPS (10th, .846).

A left-handed hitter, Hassell III led San Diego’s Minor League system in RBI (76), on-base percentage (.393), OPS (.863), doubles (33), walks (66), extra-base hits (48) and runs scored (87) in his first professional season in 2021. In 110 games between Single-A Lake Elsinore and High-A Fort Wayne, Hassell III hit .302 with 33 doubles, four triples, 11 homers, 76 RBI, 66 walks, 34 stolen bases and 87 runs scored.

Hassell III was selected by the Padres No. 8 overall in the 2020 First-Year Player Draft. He’s a native of Franklin, Tenn., and graduated from Independence (TN) High School.

Wood, 19, was San Diego’s No. 3 prospect according to MLBPipeline.com and its No. 4 prospect per Baseball America. He is listed by Baseball America as the No. 62 prospect and by MLBPipeline.com as the No. 88 prospect in all of baseball.

The Rockville, Md., native is hitting .321 with a .439 on-base percentage and a .565 slugging percentage in 55 games between Single-A Lake Elsinore and the ACL Padres. He has 19 doubles, one triple, 10 homers, 45 RBI, 40 walks, 16 stolen bases and 56 runs scored between the two stops.

A 6-foot-7, 240-pound left-handed hitting outfielder, Wood was selected in the second round of the 2021 First-Year Player Draft out of IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. He reported to the Arizona Complex League following the Draft and hit .372 with five doubles, three homers, 22 RBI, 13 walks, 10 stolen bases and 18 runs scored in 26 games during his first professional season.

Susana, 18, was the consensus No. 1 ranked pitcher in the 2022 international signing class. He was most recently the No. 10 prospect in San Diego’s system according to Baseball America and the No. 14 prospect according to MLBPipeline.com. 

The 6-foot-6, 235-pound Susana has pitched to a 2.45 ERA (8 ER/29.1 IP) with 44 strikeouts, 11 walks and a .155 opponents’ batting average in eight games (seven starts) for the Arizona Complex League Padres.

Voit, 31, hit .225 with 18 doubles, 13 home runs, 48 RBI, 39 walks, one stolen base and 38 runs scored in 82 games with the Padres.  A veteran of six Major League seasons, Voit has hit .258/.348/.490 with 65 doubles, two triples, 86 home runs, 251 RBI, 172 walks and 225 runs scored in 433 games with San Diego (2022), New York Yankees (2018-21) and St. Louis Cardinals (2017-18). He led Major League Baseball with a career-high 22 home runs in 60 games during the 2020 season.

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