Washington Nationals Editorial: It’s Time To Play Trea Turner Every Day

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Once Trea Turner was called up to the Washington Nationals on August 21, there was a buzz around the Nation’€™s Capital as fans were excited to see the shortstop prospect who was the centerpiece in the Wil Myers/Steven Souza Jr. trade this winter. Now, with the Nationals tragic number down to one game, it is time for manager Matt Williams to play some of the younger players and get them some valuable experience going into next season.

True, you can learn a lot from sitting in the dugout and watching the veterans get into their routine, but allowing a young player to make mistakes now is going to help him down the road. Since the call-up, Turner hasn’t seen much of the starting lineup. Out of the 19 games he has appeared in, he has only started in two of them.

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Of course, with Ian Desmond hitting free agency, it might be a good idea for Williams to use Desmond in the lineup until the final home game on Monday to give him the proper sendoff he deserves, since he’s been with the organization since 2005. Then, Turner can play the final six games on the road against the Braves and the Mets. If you still want to play Desmond, then you can give Anthony Rendon some days off at second base as Turner is now the backup at that spot because of the hamstring injury to Danny Espinosa.

Down at triple-A Syracuse, Turner hit in the number two spot in the order in 41 of the 48 games he played in and he hit .316 in those games with three home runs and 15 RBI’s to go with a .340 on-base percentage. As the team looks forward to next season, they are going to need a hitter with speed and good contact hitting at the top of the order. Turner could be one of the candidates to fill that role.

The 22-year-old Turner will get more opportunities to continue his development in a few weeks. Yesterday, it was announced that Turner will be playing in the Arizona Fall League for the Salt River Rafters, who are managed by Tripp Keister (Potomac Nats’€™ manager). Turner will join another Nats’€™ top infield prospect, Wilmer Difo. The first day of AFL games is October 13.

Whether it is at second base or shortstop, it is time for the Nationals to wave the white flag and see what some of their future has to offer, whether it be Turner, catcher Pedro Severino, or even Difo in some spots. At least, the Nats can take solace that they have a couple of prospects to be excited about in the future after a miserable 2015 campaign.

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