2008 Top 5 Prospects: Washington Nationals

As we lead up to both the start of the 2008 season and our “Diamond Cutter” top 100 prospects list, I will be taking a look at the top five prospects from every single Major League team. Each team will have its top five prospects along with a brief scouting report on each player that I have pulled from my scouting notes. Today I finish up the NL East with the Washington Nationals and their vastly improved Minor League system. As always, let me know how you feel about the rankings in the comments section below or via email.

1.) Chris Marrero, OF: The Nationals have a very special hitter topping their list with Marrerro. Marrero can to all fields both for average and for power with his long, upward pushing swing. He also has a great eye at the plate which will make for a nice OBP and force pitchers to pitch to him. Look for him to be an impact player in a few years.

2.) Ross Detwiler, LHP: Though only drafted in 2007 (and pitching one MLB inning last year), look for Detwiler to be part of this club in 2008. He has four great pitches with a two-seam (with nice movement) and four-seam fastball, a nasty curve, and a plus change. He could make his fastballs plus pitches if he tinkers with his delivery a little and doesn’t throw so much across his body in his motion. He will be leading this staff before too long.

3.) Michael Burgess, OF: Another big bat is in Washington’s future with Burgess. The future corner outfielder has tremendous bat speed and hand-eye coordination. This coupled with his incredible raw power potential has the Nationals excited. Good defensively with a very strong arm that will fit in nicely in right field.

4.) Collin Balester, RHP: For Balester to be an effective Major League pitcher, he will need to secure a reliable third pitch. Right now he has a low-90’s fastball and a very good late-breaking curveball. If he can work out the kinks in his change and make it viable option on the mound, he should be a good middle of the rotation pitcher for Washington.

5.) Justin Maxwell, OF: Rounding out the top five is Maxwell who has made a name for himself with his speed and solid glove. Maxwell also continues to improve at the plate where he still doesn’t make great contact but has shown some nice raw power potential for Washington. While he won’t probably make any runs at any batting titles, his defense and speed should help secure him a spot in the Majors.

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7 Responses to 2008 Top 5 Prospects: Washington Nationals

  1. Mike says:

    What kind of player do you see Marrero in a few years. There have been a few Pujols comps out there.

  2. Anytime you get a comparison as big as Pujols you know a kid has the potential to be great. I for one don’t like to compare prospects to players as great as Pujols, but I do see Marrero as a future All-Star.

    He is someone in the Pujols mold with a lot of power and the ability to hit for average. Of course we will find all of this out somewhere other than Washington as I’m sure he’s not destined to spend too much of his career there as his price tag will be quite lofty in the not too distant future.

  3. dennis says:

    When do you think you will update your top 100?

  4. dennis says:

    Do you think Elbert will see any major league time this year or will they wait and be cautious unti next year

  5. Hey Dennis, to answer your first question, the top 100 was pushed back to be unveiled March 14 due to my new partnership with Baseball Digest Daily. I’m really excited about it as it will be my first top 100 list (I normally only do top 25).

    Secondly, when you refer to Elbert I am assuming you mean Scott Elbert on the Dodgers. If that’s the case, despite some minor setbacks during his rehab, he seems to be on track to be just fine this season. My belief is that he will begin the season in the minors to gain more seasoning before joining the Dodgers later this summer or if there are any injuries early on. They do not want to rush him but apparently he is doing great.

  6. dennis says:

    Thanks. It was Scott Elbert and Congrats on your 1st top 100.

  7. robert says:

    Collin is my friend back in California. I know he will do great, and as his friend Good luck to you this year.

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