Washington Nationals Minor Leagues: Players Of The Week (6/15-6/21)
By Ricky Keeler
(Photo Credit: MILB.com)
Potomac Nationals (33-37)
Hitter Of The Week: SS Stephen Perez (.253, 1 HR, 27 RBI’s)
While Perez had his struggles at Harrisburg this season, he has had a good season for the Nationals’ high-A club. This past week, Perez went 6-for-21 with two runs scored and five RBI’s. Against the Lynchburg Hillcats (Cleveland Indians) on June 16, the shortstop went 2-for-4 with three RBI’s in Potomac’s 4-3 win.
This month, the 24-year-old shortstop is hitting .266 with 13 RBI’s in 17 games. He had 13 RBI’s in 28 games during the month of May. He is two RBI’s behind Drew Ward (29) for the team lead in that category.
Honorable Mention: RF Brandon Miller (.224, 7 HR, 26 RBI’s)
This week. Miller continued to show why he has been of the better power hitters on the 2015 Potomac squad. In six games this past week, Miller hit two home runs and had four RBI’s. Those two home runs came in a three-game period between June 15 and June 18.
This month, the 25-year-old is hitting .255 with two home runs and 11 RBI’s. He is the team leader in home runs and now has 20 career home runs in 110 games with the Potomac club, dating back to last year.
Pitcher Of The Week: SP Reynaldo Lopez (4-3, 4.50)
It was an eventful week for Lopez as the 22-year-old prospect had two great starts, but one of those outings was cut short due to rain. In a total of 8.1 innings, he gave up two runs on eight hits, walked two, and struck out 13. His week started on June 15 when he struck out eight Hillcats over 5.1 innings to record his fourth win of the season.
Then, on June 20, against the Carolina Mudcats (Atlanta Braves), Lopez had everything working. He went three innings, gave up two hits, and struck out five. However, rain suspended the game till Sunday and ended Lopez’s outing. Lopez has had a couple bad starts recently, but he does have 41 strikeouts, which is third on the team.
Honorable Mention: SP Phillips Valdez (1-2, 6.35)
This past week, Phillips Valdez finally broke into the win column for Potomac. It had been a rough start for the 23-year-old in high-A, but Valdez had his good stuff on June 19 against Carolina. He went 5.2 innings, gave up one run on four hits, struck out six, and walked one.
Before he was promoted to Potomac, Valdez was 5-2 with a 1.47 in eight starts for Hagerstown in the South Atlantic League. He has had nine walks in five games with Potomac. If he can work on the command, this is a pitcher that is going to do good things in Potomac, especially with guys like Lopez, Lucas Giolito, and all-star Nick Pivetta there to help him out.