Instructional League Roster Notes – Position Players

Player Pos. Age 2011 Team(s) 2010 Invite Notes
David Freitas C-1B 22 HAG Y Spent most of ’11 at C (86 of 123G) and posted another strong triple-slash of .288/.409/.450
Sandy Leon C 22 POT Y Defensively, he’s MLB-ready. Offensively, he’s still a work in progress but getting better.
Cole Leonida C 22 HAG Y Improved his offense, but has been a backup to both Leon and Freitas. POT in ’12?
Adrian Nieto C 21 AUB, HAG, POT Y PED suspension will dog him, but put up career offensive numbers across the board
Raudy Read C 17 DSL N Poor offensive and defensive numbers but age and status as six-figure IFA signee will buy him time and attention
Pedro Severino C 18 DSL N Another IFA with poor offensive numbers, but serviceable defensive numbers in the DSL
Justin Bloxom 3B-1B 23 POT N One of Potomac’s best hitters that the org seems hell-bent into making a 3B despite 39E in 77G there
Diomedes Eusebio 3B 19 DSL N Turned 19 yesterday. Especially good power numbers for a DSL teen: .451 SLG, 6HR, 30RBI in 59G
Blake Kelso 3B-SS 22 HAG Y Undersized IF that can hit for average but not much power and serviceable on defense = utility guy
Jeff Kobernus 2B 23 POT N Has shaken the fragile label, and has great baserunning skills but doesn’t take many walks and has only gap power
Estarlin Martinez 1B-OF 19 GCL N A hitter in search of a position, with exceptional power/on-base numbers for a teen in the GCL
Jason Martinson SS 22 HAG Y An intriguing combination of power and speed but has the hallmarks of an athlete trying to translate athleticism into skill. Could be the 2012 edition of Destin Hood.
Bryce Ortega SS 22 AUB N 41st-Rd Col Sr. that put up strong numbers in Auburn and plays a position where the Nats are very thin (SS)
Arialdi Peguero 1B 18 DSL N Another young IFA that struggled in the DSL on both offense and defense.
Anthony Rendon 3B 21 N/A N The Nationals #1 2011 Draft Pick that fell to the Nats due to injury concerns, but many scouts believe was the best player available
Adrian Sanchez 2B/SS 21 HAG Y If Kobernus feels someone breathing down his neck, that would be Adrian Sanchez, who put up an even stronger second half than his first, which is precisely what you want out of a turning-21 DSL grad in his first full season stateside.
Matt Skole 3B 22 AUB N 5th Rd ’11 pick that’s a suspect on defense but a prospect on offense
Steven Souza 1B 22 POT Y Converted from 3B to 1B last offseason, and tripled his walk total but had long homerless streak that’s intolerable for a CI
Zach Walters SS 22 POT N Acquired in deadline deal with AZ for Marquis, Walters has a slick glove and finished the season batting .366 in last 10G
Deion Williams SS 18 GCL N 16th Rd. HS Pick in ’11 Draft. Tall, lean, toolsy SS who struggled in the GCL. Grandson of George Scott.
Billy Burns OF 22 AUB N Gets on base, runs well, solid glove and he plays CF. Excuse Mr. Rizzo while he takes a cold shower.
Brian Goodwin OF 20 N/A N Supplemental Rd. Pick that might have been a 1st rounder before his transfer from UNC to Miami-Dade CC. Scouts aren’t high on his defense and some question if the power will ever be there, but most believe the upside is worth the risk.
Kevin Keyes OF 22 HAG Y Arguably the biggest surprise of the entire Nats organization in ’11, going from an abysmal .278 SLG to a robust .510 SLG
Narciso Mesa OF 19 GCL N Made the jump from DSL to GCL successfully, and was said to be “plus-plus” for his arm and speed, though neither attribute showed up much in the numbers.
Randolph Oduber OF 22 GCL, HAG Y Injuries limited the “Groovin’ Aruban” to just 60G but his ’11 numbers were fairly similar to ’10 despite playing a level higher.
Eury Perez OF 21 POT Y Defensively, he’s fairly close to MLB-ready, but his on-base skills are woeful — especially when you take away the small-ball chances
Caleb Ramsey OF 22 AUB N 11th Rd Pick in ’11 Draft that stole 15 bases in 64G despite the “not very fast” knock. Good glove, good on-base skills.
Michael Taylor OF 20 HAG Y Last year, we wondered why he got the invite. This year, we got the answer with 23SB and a .253/.310/.432 line from a 20-y.o.

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of 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.

12 thoughts on “Instructional League Roster Notes – Position Players”

  1. First of all, I’m a little suprised by the players who were reportedly signed but MIA in the 2011 season, yet not invited to the FIL (Cotton-CA, Pleffner-OF, & Nix-OF). I wonder what the story is there?

    As for those actually named to the FIL roster, I’d hope a few of them (Bloxom, E.Martinez, Martinson, & Skole, among others) get many repetitions at alternate positions. Martinson could be worth a look at 3B, Bloxom & Martinez might both benefit from time in the OF, and Skole ultimately projects as a 1B, to me at least.

  2. Sue….how could you not remember that Steven Souza spent 2011 at Potomac!!! You know, that tall big guy on 1st with light hair vs the tall big guy with dark hair.

  3. Enjoyed the summary very much. Many thanks. Curiously, though, re the comment that the Nats are thin at SS. Hmmmm … with Desmond, Espinoza, Lombardozzi, and all the guys in the system playing MI, I’d thought otherwise.

    1. Lombardozzi doesn’t have the arm or the range to play SS on a long-term basis, same with Kobernus. But he’s about to “graduate” like Espinosa and Desmond the previous two seasons. My comment refers to AAA and below. We’re looking at OGs playing the position in Harrisburg and Syracuse next year unless Walters has a monster FIL and ST. Martinson will probably move up but whither Rick Hague? He’s coming off (right, throwing arm) shoulder surgery done in early June.

  4. Does anyone think instructs and any other playing time Souza gets is a “final chance” for him in the organization?

    1. Maybe, but between being signed out of HS & a position switch, I think he might have at least one more life left with the organization. He showed some smart base-running this year to go along with a good OBP, but inconsistent power for a tall guy in a traditional power-slot.

      I guess we’ll see what happens coming out of Viera in the spring.

  5. With Rendon … but where is Harper? Maybe I missed something? I thought for sure that Harper would be in the FIL along with Rendon?

    1. With Harper being ruled out of the EL playoffs by the FO, I’d think they just want him to rest the hamstring & be ready for the AFL.

      Regarding Rendon, the FO probably just wants to see him get repetitions at both the plate & in the field, minus the aluminium bat. Maybe some drills at 3B, 2B and come corner OF work as well.

      1. Yes, I just visited Kilgore’s post on the 8th. I find it interesting that Harris “texted” Kilgore to report Harper’s status? Is there a message in that? Given the tumultuous 2011 season one can’t help but give pause to wonder.

        If there are any issues relative to Harper’s “makeup” the best thing they can do for Harper is put him on the same team with the uber-college player Rendon. In the same lineup as often as they can. Let him look in the mirror.

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