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Nationals prospect report: Signs of Life

Nationals prospect report: Signs of Life

By Cam Ellis

Last time we checked in on the farm, not a lot had changed. Trea Turner is deystroying Triple A pitching, top pitching prospects Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez had stumbled out of the gate, and Victor Robles was putting up borderline unbelieveable numbers for an 18 year old. How did they fare this week? To the prospects! 

AAA - Syracuse

Trea Turner - SS

Update through 25 games: .309/.393/.443 with a .836 OPS. Still great numbers, but this is the second week in a row that Turner's seen his numbers drop. He's hitting .244 over his last 10 games as well. In the field, Turner's made four errors in 198 innings in the field. Maybe complacency is to blame for some of this dip, but Turner was never going to hit close to .400 all year. As is tradition with Prospect Reports about Trea Turner, here's a friendly reminder that June is close. 

 

A.J. Cole - RHP

Signs of life from Cole! On 4/28 he went six scoreless innings while allowing only four hits and striking out two. To follow that up, his next start was a five-inning, two run affiar. These are obviously steps in the right direction for Cole, who had struggled the most of any of the Nats' noteable prospects this year. It's too soon to say he's back on track, but anything's better than how he had pitched prior. 

 

Austin Voth - RHP

The great walkless streak of 2016 is over. After going four games without issuing a free pass, Voth walked three in his latest start against Pawtucket. He's still at a 26/3 strikeout/walk ratio over 23 innings, so he'll probably be fine. 

AA - Harrisburg

Lucas Giolito - RHP

In two starts since last week, Giolito has gone seven innings while allowing eight runs on 11 hits. One month of stats - especially April - is never enough to make assumptions, but it's certainly been an underwhelming month for Giolito. People who called an early season call-up for Giolito might be regretting that now. 

Reynaldo Lopez - RHP

May 3rd marked the best start of Lopez's season so far. The righty went 6.1 innings while allowing one run on three hits and striking out seven. It's an encouraging sign for a pitcher expected to make "the jump" as a legitimate prospect this season. 

Wilmer Difo - SS/2B

There's not a lot more to say about Difo's struggles to this point. He's hitting .176 this season with a .278 on-base percentage and a .490 OPS. Someone give the man a day off. It'll be interesting to see what the Nats do with Difo going forward. 

High A - Potomac

Eric Fedde - RHP

Six innings, four hits, three earned runs and six strikeouts in his last start. The strikeout to walk ratio is strong, and at this point, it's just about getting Fedde innings. The high ERA and WHIP aren't great, but there's time. 

Andrew Stevenson - OF

.368 for Stevenson over the last 10 games. He almost has as many triples (3) as doubles (5) which is a fun albeit meaningless stat. How long does he need to stick around Potomac?

Low A - Hagerstown 

Victor Robles - OF

He broke a long homerless streak when he hit one on May 2nd, and it feels a little silly to be talking about homerless streaks for an 18 year old in Low - A. He's still crushing the ball, hitting .361 over the last 10 games. In 84 at-bats, he's struck out 11 times (13%) which the Nats will take all day. 

RELATED: Nationals bounce back to blow out Royals

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With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.

MORE NATIONALS: FULL 2018 SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE

Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.

RELATED: 2018 MLB BETTING ODDS

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It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.

RELATED: VEGAS SETS OVER/UNDERS FOR 2018 MLB SEASON

Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.

READ ALSO: NATIONALS FULL SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE