The Top 10 Position Players

The pendulum has swung back to a consensus again, with just 17 different players named on 10 ballots. The top three players were so named on every ballot but one, as predicted in the comments.

What’s perhaps the most glaring, albeit probably not unwarranted, is that last year’s #4 position player—Drew Ward—not only dropped off the list but had zero votes.

Before I go any futher, ze list:

  1. Victor Robles
  2. Juan Soto
  3. Carter Kieboom
  4. Daniel Johnson
  5. Yasel Antuna
  6. Luis Garcia
  7. Raudy Read
  8. Andrew Stevenson
  9. Jose Marmolejos
  10. Blake Perkins

Others receiving votes: Kelvin Gutierrez, Pedro Severino, Eric Senior, Jake Noll, Israel Pineda, Tres Barrera

For the third straight year, five players were holdovers. But unlike years past, none were traded away and just one (Brian Goodwin) graduated. The other four (Ward, Rafael Bautista, Anderson Franco, and Severino) dropped off the list, thought it should probably be noted that a list like this will tend to skew to the new, particularly in a system that’s never been very deep in position players.

Next up: The pitchers, a.k.a. Erick Fedde and the 2017 draft class, which promises to be much harder to pick even without anyone having been traded this month.

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.

23 thoughts on “The Top 10 Position Players”

  1. Only two of the top six have reached Potomac, and only one of the top six has played above Potomac. And FWIW, five of the top six are younger than Perkins, who I still have a hard time getting excited about.

    The Nats have three high-end prospects here. They really need Antuna and Garcia to continue to progress and join that level. Of course they only invested one of their top 10 draft picks in 2017 in a position player, and he didn’t even debut as a pro.

    Which leads to . . . six of these are Latin signees, while only four are draft picks. Of the draft picks, only Kieboom seems to have a higher-end ceiling, unless one believes that Johnson’s power will continue to show at higher levels.

  2. I thought it would be useful to move forward these comments posted late on the last thread by “LM,” a long-time season-ticket holder in Harrisburg:

    Andrew Stevenson excelled at both the plate and in the field in his short time in Harrisburg. Jose Marmolejos did very well hitting, but he needs to work on his defense (1st base and/or LF). Erick Fedde was their best starter. Now that the experiment of turning him into a reliever is over, I expect him to revert to his regular form again.

    Victor Robles only played in 30-some games in HBG and you could see he has talent. However, he still needs more time in the minors. He was pulled from 2 games for not running hard to first base and over slid bases like he did for the Nats. His first throw to homeplate hit the backstop on a fly, but his throws improved as the season progressed.

  3. I had thought that there might be some risk of the Nats losing Spencer Kieboom in the Rule 5 draft, but in this breakout, there appear to be several other catchers who are better options:

    It is sort of funny to see Kieboom’s highest level listed as “MLB” considering the Moonlight Graham nature of his one appearance. (For the record, I think he’ll get another MLB look somewhere, at some point. He had an interesting bounce-back at SYR last year after an awful start at HBG.)

    1. It is interesting to ponder an irrational-hope pick to click. I guess mine would be Nick Banks. He had such a good college pedigree that I keep thinking that he’s got to be better than he’s shown thus far.

    1. I’m interested to see what Austin Davidson can do at AA. I’m not expecting miracles, but he’s got to be better at the plate than Stephen Perez.

        1. Harold Ramirez in jays chain
          AA has some good numbers for AA with R/R skills . Robles to Cuse
          And Carey not AA ready … LuCroy could use another R/R bat in OF.
          Jordan DeLorenzo nice LH arm cut loose by Cards

          1. Jose Miguel Fernandez. See where he lands
            Nelson Jorge sign for Hagerstown depth since
            The three bonus babies from GCL won’t be ready for A minus April 18

          2. That’s actually really interesting news about Fernandez for a few reasons.

            1. The Nationals need a 2B. Murphy hits FA next winter, and even if he’s re-signed his future does not remain at 2B.

            2. This clears up a lot of the doubts about Yadiel Hernandez’s status. Fernandez signed a deal with the Dodgers right around the same time Hernandez signed with the Nats. Fernandez was still very much under team control going into next season, hence the surprise as to why the Dodgers released him voluntarily… This means Hernandez is under Nats control and is not a minor league FA as some have suggested.

            3. The justification for Fernandez’s release is very murky. He didn’t play since July due to unspecified injuries. There must be something else at play. But if he is indeed healthy, the Nats should make a strong push to re-unite him with his compatriot, Hernandez, in Syracuse next year. That would give the Nats some serious AAAA depth that they’ve been lacking since… forever.

          3. So have the Nats actually signed Fernandez? Or is this just speculation that they should do so? He posted excellent AA-AAA numbers for the Dodgers, and I was also surprised at his release.

            And yes, I had raised the question of whether Hernandez was now a minor-league free agent, as I had seen some site speculating that he was. I thought I remembered him initially signing for something like three years, though.

    2. Jason Martinson is also an option. He was just signed as a MILB free agent by the Nationals and spent 2015 and 2016 in Syracuse where he played multiple positions.

      1. Huh. That is news. Many Martinson fans.
        So the village here agrees Altuna and Garcia should begin in XST then Auburn or shock many beginning @ Hagerstown until NYPL opens in June?
        Jorge cut by Pirates would be a nice lower level add
        No JMF is in play for 30 clubs. Just my Santa Claus wish for Doug Harris and brass to go after .

    3. Other interesting minor league free agents on the market:
      A ball OF. R/R Yeison Melo
      AAA 1b O”Koyea Dickson
      3 b Jae-Gyun Hwang
      Afore mentioned Christian Friedrich
      Bullpenners Ryan Hortsman, Dan Runzler

      Any medical news on Aaron Barrett, Bryce’s 6’5″ leftybrother, Nick Lee
      And Tyler Mapes, Luke?
      Anybody nickname Y Altuna. Big tuna yet??lol

  4. The guess that is a big reason as to the why of Dave Martinez this time around. Most of the best high-ceiling prospects are from the Dominican and then there’s Yadiel Hernandez from Cuba … would a Fernandez make sense with Martinez as the Nat’s manager? Perhaps.

    The Nats desperately need high end talent on the bench that’s cheap given their predicament with Harper’s pending free agency … and then there’s also Rendon. Plus the fact the starting 4 are all now over 30. The fifth might not be … then again maybe that starter will be. The Nats do have financial challenges right now this season … using Cubans like Hernandez and perhaps Fernandez seem like a way to ameliorate that somewhat …

    1. Despite his surname, Martinez isn’t a native Spanish speaker. He was born in NYC and grew up in the Orlando area. He learned Spanish when he became a coach. FWIW, Dusty had spent many years playing and coaching in the winter leagues and was quite fluent in Spanish.

      1. Davey takes me back to days admiring Buck Rodgers skippering the expos
        Picking up on Mark Z post on MASN: Rizzo should feel good about a healthy Glover in camp along with Cole possibly being auditioned to take Albers role.
        Plus Nats scouts are great at finding great adds in the bushes

    2. I was the one who raised the -wow- wouldn’t it be nice JMF in the org. Dream thought.
      I bet even money for him might be
      On a scale from 1-0. How much does brass like Dan Gamache who could reach Cuse ?

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