Nationals Place C Wil Nieves on Temporary Leave List, Recall C Wilson Ramos from Syracuse

The Washington Nationals today placed catcher Wil Nieves on the Temporary Leave List and recalled catcher Wilson Ramos from Syracuse of the Triple-A International League. Nationals Senior Vice President and General Manager Mike Rizzo made the announcement.

Ramos, 23, was acquired from the Twins with lefthander Joe Testa on July 30 in exchange for right-handed closer Matt Capps. Since joining the Nationals organization, Ramos is hitting .317 (19-for-60) with two doubles, a triple, two home runs and six RBI in 15 games with Syracuse. For the season, Ramos is batting .254 with 16 doubles, a triple, seven homers and 36 RBI in 86 International League contests.

Regarded as one of baseball’s top prospects, the Venezuela-born Ramos entered the 2010 season rated as the best power hitter, best defensive catcher and the Twins’ No. 2 prospect according to industry-insider Baseball America. He was ranked by BA as Minnesota’s third-ranked prospect entering the 2009 season.

Last season, Ramos’ first at the Double-A level, he paced all Twins full-season farmhands in batting average (.317), threw out over 40 percent of would-be basestealers and was subsequently named the Eastern League’s No. 8 prospect.

Ramos, who stands 6-foot-0 and 220 lbs., made his big league debut with Minnesota in May and batted .296 (8-for-26) with three doubles and one RBI in seven games. He signed with the Twins as a non-drafted free agent on July 7, 2004.

After posting three hits and one RBI on Tue. at Atlanta, the 32 year-old Nieves is hitting .207 with two home runs and 15 RBI in 47 games for Washington this season.