The Preliminary 2014 Watchlist, Part One

I’m not sure why, but in assembling this first pass I had the distinct feeling that some of these names probably ought not to be listed, but are because either (A) I’m following the guidelines I’ve set up in years past (B) listing an established guy in a given position feels less disingenuous than slotting in a recent draft pick from a short-season simply because he’s new. I still believe that performance means something — though a lot less than most of us are willing to admit — and if he didn’t do well in Auburn or the GCL last summer, I need (want?) more evidence than merely being drafted.

Part of my ambivalence is knowing that I have two “Notable” categories in which to put such conundrums, though most of these guys are position players. As I wrote last year: They’re a means of acknowledging the ones that don’t quite merit full-fledged watchlist treatment, but are often discussed or mentioned. I guess the real question is whether that’s more appropriate for the “old” guys or the “new” guys. I’m open to a discussion of that, with the reminder that we’re talking about people here and the players, their families, and their agents are reading.

Now, let’s revisit the caveats…

It’s not a depth chart… Obviously, when you arrange it the way I have — by the highest level played to date — it’s going to look like it at first glance. But when there’s a “tie,” I can either go alphabetical order or (for the most part) list the player that played more games at the position/level.

It’s (mostly) based on 2013 usage… I think folks can see that I’m playing a little fast and loose on this one this year… Jeff Kobernus actually played more outfield than infield, but second base has suddenly become a thin position in the minors, in large part because the Nats have been rotating IFs between 2B, 3B and/or SS

It’s preliminary… I like how Sickels takes feedback with his prospect lists, so part of the purpose of these posts is to listen to your comments (the other part is to keep the site fresh and visitors coming, duh).

C 1B 2B SS 3B OF
Leon Bloxom Kobernus Walters Skole E. Perez
Nieto Pleffner Hague Martinson Dykstra Goodwin
P. Severino Marmolejos-Diaz Renda Difo J.C. Valdez Souza
Reistetter D. Eusebio Mejia Abreu Ward Burns
B. Miller
W. Ramos
E. Martinez
R. Encarnacion

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.

8 thoughts on “The Preliminary 2014 Watchlist, Part One”

  1. As I mentioned once before, other than in the outfield, the Nats sure are lacking in position prospects. That our minor league affiliates did so well must be an indication that the pitching is quite good overall.
    I will be interested to see how well some of the GCL graduates do in 2014…guys like Encarnacion, Bautista, and Ward especially.
    Will be interested in what you say about these guys as well as Abreu and Meija, Luke.

  2. I agree that the list seems thin. It seems especially so if Cutter Dykstra is #2 at 3B. I wish him well, and I know he had a better year last season, but I get the sense that he is still marginal. I was surprised not to see Solano at the top off the catchers, then had the shock of remembering that he is our backup at the moment at the MLB level. I’m fond of him, too, but I would prefer to have greater depth on the Nats’ roster than that. I welcome both guys to change my mind next season.

  3. Granted these depth charts may not reflect
    Actually affiliation level signings , but one
    Wonders if Doug Harris replacement will push
    The envelope with some guys especially the GCL
    Kids and maybe a couple double bumps.
    A thought on this day in MLB history- what if
    Reggie Jackson signed with expos in 1976????

  4. Why is raffle Furcal garnering so much interest ?
    The Nats could be interested if they deal
    Plefner to Harrisburg since Keyes is a nightmare
    @ 1b!

  5. I see Craig Manuel is not enclosed .
    Give him more PT he sits ahead of the German
    R- stetter
    GCL talent should taste Hagerstown before
    Auburn opens up!

  6. I know that Dykstra played more games at 3B than 2B for the P-Nats, but he doesn’t have the power to play a corner infield position. If he makes the big leagues, it will be at 2B.

    I guess you have to keep carrying Skole at 3B as long as the Nats insist on playing him there, but I think all of us will be surprised if he doesn’t end up at 1B. He supposedly toned up quite a bit during his layoff this year, so it will be interesting to see how he progresses in 2014.

    Seems strange to look at 1B and no longer see Marrero. Hope he hooks on somewhere where he will have more opportunity.

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