Who’s The New Guy?

For an organization that’s sorely lacking upper-level position prospects, flipping a journeyman 35-year-old utility player for 23-year-old AA outfielder ain’t so bad.

Maybe that’s too sunny for the rest of the Natmosphere, but I’m here to give you the cheese, not the whine.

Erik Komatsu is a short, stocky (college 5’10”, 190 lbs) outfielder that most scouting services project as a fourth outfielder. He’s a high-contact batter (more walks than strikeouts this season and last) with gap power but isn’t expected to develop into a power hitter. He can steal a base (28 last year, 13 so far this year) and has slightly above average speed. Defensively, he’s capable of playing all three positions (career .985 Fld%, most starts in CF), and his arm is described as strong and accurate.

Komatsu was drafted in the 8th round out of Cal State Fullerton in 2008, and had a strong first season in Helena (11HR, 47RBI in 68G) but injuries (hamstring, wrist, concussion) limited him to just 26 games in 2009. He recovered in 2010 to put up a .323/.413/.442 line in 130 games and earn Player of The Year honors from the Milwaukee organization. Thus far in 2011, he’s hit for a .294 average, gotten on base at a .393 clip, and clubbed 19 doubles, a triple, and six HRs for a .416 slugging percentage. As mentioned previously, he’s walked 53 times and struck out just 44 times in 379 ABs.

As of this writing, it would appear that he’ll be ticketed to fill out the roster in Harrisburg.

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of NationalsProspects.com. Potomac is his home base as a season-ticket holder, but he has visited every affiliate north of Florida at least once, with multiple trips to Hagerstown and Harrisburg.

17 thoughts on “Who’s The New Guy?”

  1. I was a little disappointed at first, but was reminded that this was a return for two months of said 35-year-old. I guess we are all waiting for the big trade, or at least waiting to see Rizzo get something for Marquis.


  2. I had never heard of him before this trade, but that scouting bio is pretty good. Why doesn’t that translate into something more than 4th OF? I assume that scouts don’t really believe that he can play CF full time?

    Otherwise that seems like a major league CF – good D and arm, a little speedy, high OBP. Am I missing something?

  3. Looks to me like Rizzo covering all of his bases, hedging his bets, and well covering his ass since leadoff and CF/RF positions continue to be a huge albatross around his neck that he has yet to succeed in addressing.

    With Corey Brown, Eric Komatsu, Brian Goodwin, and Eury Perez perhaps he finally has at least as far as the minor leagues are concerned? Curran can field but that’s about it. No bat. When you throw in the continuing to develop Bryce Harper and Destin Hood?

    Still, the major league roster is a work in progress … and Rizzo probably still needs another 2 really good drafts.

  4. This is like the anti-Gomes trade. I like it, but the two deals side-by-side don’t seem to indicate much of a plan.

    1. I think the Gomes trade is about the compensation pick. Rhinehart and Manno weren’t necessarily going to amount to much. Rizzo has faith in his scouting ability to pick a GREAT player. On top of that if he can make Davey Johnson happier he will.

      This is all pure speculation I can’t read Rizzo’s mind.

  5. I think Gomes was mostly about giving Davey Johnson a bat he was asking for in a way that still could end up being a compensation pick. So what Rick said.

  6. He’s the only player acquired for Marquis, apparently. The Nats don’t pay the rest of Marquis’s salary, as if I care.


  7. Walters is at low A South Bend right now, hitting well. Do you think he will go to Potomac, or stay at the Hagerstown level?


  8. Rich could not disagree with your more .Manno i truly believe is going to be a very effective pitcher. I would love to know why u think not . And please do not talk about velocity, I have heard it all, he is 88-92 so what that he does not throw 95

  9. I like this trade from a depth standpoint. A 35-yo bench piece for a young OF, who should tuck into the system nicely, and provide immediate value to the upper levels.

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