Blog Entry

Nationals to focus on pitching in draft

Posted on: May 12, 2011 8:44 pm
By Evan Brunell

Nats draftThis time around, the Nationals will be in the unique position of picikng sixth in the Rule 4 draft, more commonly known as the amateur draft. The last two seasons, Washington has grabbed the first pick and used that to push the franchise significantly forward with the selections of Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper.

While picking sixth is a far cry from first, the Nats picked the right year to drop down, as this year's draft is extraordinarily deep with no clear No. 1. That will give Washington plenty of options and money to toss around. The team will be able to spread out its draft budget more effectively this year now that they won't have to pour most of it into their top selection.

"I think we have a good idea of who will be there [at No. 6]," Nationals director of amateur scouting Kris Kline told the Washington Post. "I think we have a good shot of getting the players we want. You have to have a Plan B and a Plan C. It’s a good year. That part of the draft, there’s so much depth. There’s going to be a lot of guys to choose from."

The Nationals will likely take a pitcher, although they fully intend to draft the best player available regardless. However, if two players are evenly ranked, it appears as if Washington will go pitching as they're not confident of the depth in their system despite grabbing Sammy Solis, A.J. Cole and Robbie Ray to significant deals via last year's draft.

"That’s one thing we’re going to focus on, to be honest," Kline added. "That’s something we’re lacking in our system. You can never have enough of that. And this is a very good year to focus on that. This is a very good draft. There’s a lot of arm strength out there, a lot of big velocity."

Names that won't be there at No. 6 are UCLA righty Gerrit Cole, who is in the hunt for No. 1 overall to the Pirates and Virginia lefty Danny Hultzen, who is linked heavily to the Diamondbacks at No. 3.. But Vanderbilt’s Sonny Gray, Georgia Tech’s Jed Bradley, UCLA’s Trevor Bauer and high schoolers Dylan Bundy and Taylor Guerrieri will be there for the Nats and it would be a surprise if one of the names were not selected.

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Category: MLB

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 10, 2011 2:37 am

Nationals to focus on pitching in draft

Impressive surrender. You totally agree with all the jobs you could obtain in print.

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 11:27 pm

Nationals to focus on pitching in draft

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Since: May 6, 2009
Posted on: May 16, 2011 11:03 am

Nationals to focus on pitching in draft

You sound like a liberal who has deemed himself "all knowing" about how to handle the economy...  Just about 1/3 of all young pictures have tommy john surgery these days..  Jordan Zimmerman is a good example...  Is your post an attempt to motivate Strasburg?

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: May 12, 2011 9:22 pm

Nationals to focus on pitching in draft

The Nationals should spend more time developing their prospect pitchers than rushing them to the majors. Stephen Strasburg's brief but brillaint career was as a result of management's overzealous push to please fans who wanted something to be excited about. Strasburg was severely overworked and has suffered career threatening injuries. Yes, the Nationals have said that with today's modern medical practices that "Stasburg will be better than before". That only happens in the movies. Everyone knows that once an athlete suffers a serious injury they are never the same again. There are not guarantees for pitchers who have susatained major injuries. The examples of pitchers who have overcomed their injuries and pitch well again are exceptions..not the norm. Strasburg will be very lucky if he can make it as a closer in MLB. His days as a starter are over! 

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