The Nationals have a talented left-handed pitcher in Tim Cate, who continues to get notice in the Baseball America Nats top 10 in 2020. The southpaw showed well last season for high Single-A Potomac and comes in at No. 5 this season.
No. 5 Tim Cate
Baseball America Nats correspondent Lacy Lusk said the University of Connecticut product demonstrated he belonged in the Carolina League with some solid pitching in 2019. Cate started 13 games at low Single-A Hagerstown before moving up.
“He looked really good at Potomac at the end of last season,” Lusk said. “He probably has the best curveball in the organization, really good athlete. He even pitched right-handed in high school just to play his senior season because he had an injury. He’s coming along pretty quickly since being drafted in the second round in 2018.”
The 22-year-old Cate went a combined 11-9 with a 3.07 ERA in 26 starts with one complete game. In 195 2/3 innings, Cate fired 184 strikeouts with just 48 walks. Double-A Harrisburg appears to be his next challenge.
“That would make the most sense,” Lusk said. “I’d expect him to be in Harrisburg pretty quickly if he doesn’t open the year there.”
I spoke with Cate last season, and he was focused on his mechanics. At that time, he was hoping to put a full season’s worth of work in, and that turned out well. Now Cate will take on Eastern League batters and see how his curveball pays at Double-A for 25 to 30 starts.