Nationals’ Opening Day Lineup Prediction

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Mar 1, 2014; Melbourne, FL, USA; Washington Nationals center fielder Denard Span (2) steals second base during the third inning against the Atlanta Braves at Space Coast Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

1. Denard Span CF

2013 Stats: .279/.327/.380 HR 4 R 75 RBI 47 SB 20

Denard Span had an incredibly slow first half in 2013 but really picked up the pace in the second half. In fact, he hit above .300 after Rick Schu took over as hitting coach. His on base percentage was a little low for a lead off hitter, but he has a career mark of over .350, which is more than adequate for a lead off hitter.

The more aggressive Span was, the more successful he was. He even had that incredible 29 game hitting streak and a lot of those hits came early in the count. I see Span as the perfect option for lead off in the Nationals’ lineup. His only real competition would be Jayson Werth, who I believe would be better suited in a place where he could hit with runner on base.