Author Topic: Premature in season speculation about next year's roster  (Read 1938 times)

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Offline blue911

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Lewis Brinson is still getting chances.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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:lmao: Kieboom being released for Vargas

Dude is going to get a ton of playing time if he's healthy. He's hit at every other level and was a first rounder. If Garcia deserves after a season+ of negative WAR, then there is no reason to not let Kieboom start.
Vargas, no, but it is not clear at this point he deserves 1st dibs over Alu, who has performed at high minors more recently. As you say all the time, Kieboom's big high minors season was at Fresno, so PCL hitting must taken with a bit of salt.  Add in his injury, and I don't think his leash is unlimited.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Svrluga and Dougherty did a q & a session on Tuesday where they dived into some roster speculation.  Dougherty flags both CF and 3rd base as open, with Robles and Kieboom as the current leading candidates on the roster.  He places Voit at DH, Meneses at 1st, and Thomas in left, with Ruiz, Garcia and Abrams up the middle.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2022/09/20/washington-nationals-stephen-strasburg/

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Robles and Kieboom remain big question marks, with Robles underperforming this season and Kieboom recovering from Tommy John surgery, Next season — or next spring training, frankly — should show just how long the leashes are for these two former top prospects. One might argue their chances should have already run out, especially after Robles filled 2022 with long slumps and characteristic mistakes on the base paths. Kieboom has struggled throughout his scattered chances in the majors, though he probably bought himself some time with the elbow injury.

Vargas and Alu are tabbed as the internal competition for Kieboom, although another veteran pickup for competition is on the table. Speculates corner OF as the place where the Nationals might add a veteran FA.  Call and Palacios in the mix, too.

As for catchers, he views Pineda as the backup to Ruiz with the highest upside, and notes he would be significantly helped by robo umps.

Oh, and for Welch's entertainment, there's some interesting thoughts on Robles, again from Dougherty.

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All in all, the coaching staff seems pretty fed up wth Victor Robles, evidenced by how Dave Martinez has scattered his playing time in recent weeks. Lane Thomas has gotten a lot of run in center while Alex Call is being tested in left. When the Nationals want to play both Nelson Cruz and Luke Voit, Joey Meneses has shifted from first to right field. To me, two things can be true about Robles: He could have played well above his abilities in 2019, helping the Nationals to a World Series and obscuring expectations in the years since. And in reality, he could just be a very below-average hitter with speed and a great arm/glove in center.

If that's the case, Robles's career output will fall well beneath what the Nationals hoped for out of a top prospect. As for this winter, he is arbitration-eligible again and could be non-tendered at the beginning of the offseason, ending his time with the only organization he has played for. Or the Nationals could hold onto him as a placeholder for the young outfielders in their system. Top prospect Robert Hassell III arrived in the Juan Soto/Josh Bell trade on Aug. 2. If all goes well, he should be knocking on the door farily soon, as he finished this season with the Class AA Harrisburg Senators. So no matter what happens with Robles in the immediate future, it is hard to see him in Washington's long-term blueprint. That's what a .216/.295.307 slash line since the beginning of 2020 will do.

Offline welch

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:lmao: Kieboom being released for Vargas

Dude is going to get a ton of playing time if he's healthy. He's hit at every other level and was a first rounder. If Garcia deserves after a season+ of negative WAR, then there is no reason to not let Kieboom start.

Kieboom hit in the .290s that season he was at Fresno. Of course, Kieboom was at Fresno after he flopped at SS when Trea got hurt. Flopped as a hitter and a fielder. Kieboom flopped as a hitter and fielder when given 3B in 2020. Kieboom flopped at 3B last season.

Sure, Key-flop will get a chance in Spring Training, but he has been tried and found wanting. If the only reason to keep him of the 26-man roster is that he was a first rounder way back when, then the rebuild is hopeless. Or Fedde is an ace.

And I read the Post Q&A, and noticed Dougherty saying that Davey and staff seem fed up with Robles. While Victor seems to have learned somewhat to throw to the right base, he still can't hit and still runs the bases as if he's playing against 12 year olds. If he could hit .240, he would be a regular. If he could hit .275, Robles might be an All-Star. As he is, he is another flop, a flop that has hurt the Nats badly.

Offline Elvir Ovcina

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I suppose now is the time for the Minor League Grump (me) to point out that prospects and age are funny things.  We tend to form expectations of guys that get framed by when they came up, not how old they are (and thus how much actual baseball experience they have).

What I mean with that is that Robles, Kieboom, and Alu are all the same age, which is one year older than Cavalli, Ruiz, and Adon.

Offline Slateman

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Vargas, no, but it is not clear at this point he deserves 1st dibs over Alu, who has performed at high minors more recently. As you say all the time, Kieboom's big high minors season was at Fresno, so PCL hitting must taken with a bit of salt.  Add in his injury, and I don't think his leash is unlimited.

Kieboom hit in the .290s that season he was at Fresno. Of course, Kieboom was at Fresno after he flopped at SS when Trea got hurt. Flopped as a hitter and a fielder. Kieboom flopped as a hitter and fielder when given 3B in 2020. Kieboom flopped at 3B last season.

Sure, Key-flop will get a chance in Spring Training, but he has been tried and found wanting. If the only reason to keep him of the 26-man roster is that he was a first rounder way back when, then the rebuild is hopeless. Or Fedde is an ace.
And his hitting in A ball. And making multiple minor league all star games. And playing in two Futures Games. And playing for Team America in the WBC.

Kieboom doesnt even have a full season in majors. The club will absolutely give him a ton of time in a rebuilding year. Especially since he came.back from Triple A in 2021 and put together a nice month.

Kieboom isnt even the worst infielder on the team. By your criteria, Luis Garcia flopped already with his 79 wRC+ and league worst defense in his first ~400 plate appearances

Offline welch

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And his hitting in A ball. And making multiple minor league all star games. And playing in two Futures Games. And playing for Team America in the WBC.

Kieboom doesnt even have a full season in majors. The club will absolutely give him a ton of time in a rebuilding year. Especially since he came.back from Triple A in 2021 and put together a nice month.

Kieboom isnt even the worst infielder on the team. By your criteria, Luis Garcia flopped already with his 79 wRC+ and league worst defense in his first ~400 plate appearances

Has anyone suggested that Garcia can play 3B? Or, instead, has the team searched for a position Garcia can play where he hurts the team the least?

Of course, Key-flop has not played a full season in the majors. He was given 3B in 2020 and again in 2021, and he played so badly that the team sent him back to the minors both times. Jake Noll has not had a full season in the majors, either. (Noll had eight games with the Nats in 2019)

Offline Slateman

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Has anyone suggested that Garcia can play 3B? Or, instead, has the team searched for a position Garcia can play where he hurts the team the least?

Of course, Key-flop has not played a full season in the majors. He was given 3B in 2020 and again in 2021, and he played so badly that the team sent him back to the minors both times. Jake Noll has not had a full season in the majors, either. (Noll had eight games with the Nats in 2019)
No. Garcia is so bad that he doesnt belong on the infield at all. They put him at second and he still sucks. Kieboom is a better defender than Garcia.

Yes, Kieboom got sent down to the minors to develop. Thats what minors are for. Thats why we sent Garcia down too. In both cases, we've seen some success.

Alu has options. He's not on the 40 man. The Nationals already paid for Kieboom's surgery and rehab. He should absolutely be given a substantial amount of time in the major leagues. Alu should be in Triple A, learning multiple positions so he can be a utility guy like Vargas.

Offline Slateman

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Also, I think you should all severely temper your expectations for free agent spending. New ownership will be on board in November at the earliest. They arent gonna let Rizzo go buying whatever he wants. Not on a one year deal.

I would expect similar bargain bin shopping, like last offseason.

Offline Elvir Ovcina

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Has anyone suggested that Garcia can play 3B? Or, instead, has the team searched for a position Garcia can play where he hurts the team the least?

Of course, Key-flop has not played a full season in the majors. He was given 3B in 2020 and again in 2021, and he played so badly that the team sent him back to the minors both times. Jake Noll has not had a full season in the majors, either. (Noll had eight games with the Nats in 2019)

Garcia can't play 3B.  His problem at SS was arm more than glove.  If you can't throw from SS you can't throw from 3B. 

I think 2B is probably where he hurts the least.  He can be at least an adequate defender there with some work.  He may not hit enough to play anywhere else besides places he can't play (SS, CF, C).

Offline Smithian

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Also, I think you should all severely temper your expectations for free agent spending. New ownership will be on board in November at the earliest. They arent gonna let Rizzo go buying whatever he wants. Not on a one year deal.

I would expect similar bargain bin shopping, like last offseason.
If they take Cruz pay spot and are willing to to go out and spend $15-20 million on a FA or trade pickup, they can find a good short term option for the corner OF. That isn't huge.

Regarding rotation, I agree it would take more than a new group will spend to fix it. I think you'll see them acquire at least 2 middle or back of the rotation starters, but it won't be anyone who you think might start on Opening Day.

Offline Slateman

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Garcia can't play 3B.  His problem at SS was arm more than glove.  If you can't throw from SS you can't throw from 3B. 

I think 2B is probably where he hurts the least.  He can be at least an adequate defender there with some work.  He may not hit enough to play anywhere else besides places he can't play (SS, CF, C).
Garcia is pretty terrible at second base too. For Garcia to be worth this level of bad defense (particularly with the shift going away), he needs to add about 100 points to his OPS

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Alu has options. He's not on the 40 man. The Nationals already paid for Kieboom's surgery and rehab. He should absolutely be given a substantial amount of time in the major leagues. Alu should be in Triple A, learning multiple positions so he can be a utility guy like Vargas.
Alu has to be added to the 40 man this offseason, but yes, I could see options playing into who gets first shot.  That's reasonable.  It's more a question of the length of the leash.  I think Kieboom burned an option in 2019 and 2021, but I think he was all majors in 2020, preserving the option.  IF he's out, then he gets a longer leash than if both can be kept in the system in the minors.

Oh, and I don't say Kieboom didn't have great numbers in A ball. I said high minors, which would be AA/AAA.  .262 / .326 / .395 with a 102 wRC+ at Harrisburg tail end of 2018. Age adjusted, good, but is that really great?  His prospect ranking was due to his A+ season.  2019, Fresno, really nice numbers, but relative to the league, just a 124 wRC+.   2020 was all in the majors (no minor league line), but 2021 was a 114 wRC+ - not spectacular for a guy whose prior two years were AAA or above.

Offline imref

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a rotation of gore, cavalli, gray, fedde, and corbin has to be better in 2023 than adon, gray, fedde, corbin, and espino in 2022, right?

I don't think we sign a starter, unless it's to replace fedde.  I do think we need a corner OF to allow meneses to shift to 1B. Judge is available :couch:

Online Natsinpwc

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a rotation of gore, cavalli, gray, fedde, and corbin has to be better in 2023 than adon, gray, fedde, corbin, and espino in 2022, right?

I don't think we sign a starter, unless it's to replace fedde.  I do think we need a corner OF to allow meneses to shift to 1B. Judge is available :couch:
Think you need a veteran who can go 150 innings. Gore did not pitch big innings this year and we see how Gray tired this year. Cavalli probably will have the same growing pains even if he stays healthy.  Sign someone for one or two years that does not break the bank.

Offline imref

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Seems Anibel has earned consideration for next year: 34.1 IP, 1.31 ERA, 5 ER on 16 hits, 20 Ks over his last 7 starts.

Offline Slateman

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Think you need a veteran who can go 150 innings. Gore did not pitch big innings this year and we see how Gray tired this year. Cavalli probably will have the same growing pains even if he stays healthy.  Sign someone for one or two years that does not break the bank.
Grienke? Manaea? Gibson?

Online Natsinpwc

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Grienke? Manaea? Gibson?
I would say Gibson but he has been awful the past two Septembers. Maybe that does not matter with the Nats.

Offline welch

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Anibal before Fedde as a starter, but the Nats need a competent starter, someone like Anibal in 2019. The three youngsters might click and might stay healthy, but that's a double-if.

Offline Slateman

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I would say Gibson but he has been awful the past two Septembers. Maybe that does not matter with the Nats.
He can pitch the innings though. Not sure if we care about September, as our minor leaguers should be making their way up

Offline imref

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He can pitch the innings though. Not sure if we care about September, as our minor leaguers should be making their way up

we don't have any ML pitchers that are realistic starters in 2023 other than maybe Rutledge. Susana hasn't pitched above A. Cole Henry is hurt. Not sure we want to count on Romero.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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we don't have any ML pitchers that are realistic starters in 2023 other than maybe Rutledge. Susana hasn't pitched above A. Cole Henry is hurt. Not sure we want to count on Romero.
Tetrault?

Offline imref

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Tetrault?

Meh pitcher who has a stress fracture of his shoulder. I wouldn't count on him as a rotation piece.

Offline Slateman

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Tetrault?
Adon, Cate, Henry, Carillo ... not sure we'll care but gotta think one of them will be available to pitch

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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4 rotation slots are set, barring injury: Gore Cavalli Gray Corbin. Fedde, if offered arb, I think is #6, with Espino also in relief. 1 slot for a vet, maybe Sanchez, maybe better, to make starts and eat innings. Room for a surprise, too. I think cate henry Carrillo are relievers if healthy, along with Cronin, the guy with the consonants, and Ferrer