Potomac Announces Its 2013 Opening Day Roster

The Potomac Nationals unveiled its 2013 Opening Day this afternoon, which as expected, will feature quite a few familiar faces. Without further ado, here’s the rundown (watchlist players in bold, notables in italics:

Colin Bates Cutter Dykstra Billy Burns Cole Leonida
A.J. Cole Blake Kelso Randolph Oduber Adrian Nieto
Matt Grace Kevin Keyes Caleb Ramsey
Ben Hawkins Jason Martinson Michael Taylor
Tyler Herron Adrian Sanchez
Taylor Hill Francisco Soriano
Taylor Jordan
Christian Meza
Richard Mirowski
Robbie Ray
Kylin Turnbull Paul Applebee Rob Gilliam Josh Smoker

Perhaps not as many high-level prospects or high-profile guys as Harrisburg, but with 10 watchlist players and seven notables (which includes the M*A*S*H unit), it’s certainly an interesting roster. For better or worse, you’re going to read about these guys the most because (full disclosure) Potomac is home base for me as a season-ticket holder.

The early drama is who’s going to the ‘pen? Ray, Grace, and Hill finished the year in the P-Nat rotation but Cole, Jordan, and Turnbull were all Low-A starters last year. Unless there’s a six-man rotation, there’s an odd man out.

The outfield will be one of the fastest and most athletic in recent memory, with three CFs among the four outfielders. Taylor is still likely to the one the one that sees the most time in center, but it wouldn’t hurt to have that arm in right, either.

Keyes is expected to start at first and Martinson at short, but beyond that, I have a feeling we’re going to see a lot of mixing and matching at second and third with the rest of the infielders (except Soriano) having spent time shuffling between 2B, SS, and 3B.

Finally, Nieto and Leonida will be a catching tandem and teammates for the third straight year. Neither has caught more than 70 games in a season, but the edge probably goes to Nieto as the more accomplished hitter in his limited appearances due to injury and suspension.

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.

14 thoughts on “Potomac Announces Its 2013 Opening Day Roster”

  1. Perhaps most eyes will be on the Harrisburg position players, but this is definitely the rotation that I will be most interested in. Hopefully, AJ can show that his High-A experience in Oakland was just an anomaly, Robbie can take that next step up, and Taylor Jordan can show he is back from his surgery despite that ST shellacking in St. Louis (kinda cool / interesting that they let him start that game). Maybe even Turnbull can start to show some of the promise he once had. Should be a fun year, and we’re so glad to have you there providing the firsthand reports!

    1. No, especially after they didn’t promote him to High-A this time last year. His walk rate took a real dive in Potomac, which is unacceptable for a high-K guy like him.

  2. I am intrigued by Billy Burns. You can’t teach speed, and the Nats are trying to turn him into a switch hitter to take advantage of an extra step towards 1b. A little late to be doing that, but it makes him an interesting prospect, if that works out.

    1. Nats didn’t teach him that – he gave up switch-hitting in college and picked it back up last season. He was so successful at it (’11 vs. RHP as a RHB: .238/.344/.300, ’12 vs. RHP as a LHB: .320/.452/.364) it makes you wonder why — besides the difficulty of maintaining two swings — he ever gave it up.

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