Nationals: Biggest Takeaways from 7-6 Loss in Cleveland
Trea Turner is Exactly the Spark this Offense Needs
The Nationals need Trea Turner batting leadoff every day. Period. End of story. With a league-low .587 OPS out of the top spot in the batting order, there is no doubt that the table-setter has been the biggest hole in their lineup all season. Ben Revere has looked completely lost since missing a month with an oblique strain and Michael Taylor took his .222 batting average down to AAA to work on cutting down the strikeouts. As a result, Turner has had to learn how to play the outfield, leaving Dusty no excuse for keeping him on the bench.
Turner, who has reached base in every game he’s started since the All-Star Break, has game-changing speed that is rare to find across baseball. Washington hasn’t had the luxury of an everyday leadoff man since Denard Span’s last full season with the team in 2014. While Turner is still making adjustments and will undoubtedly strike out more than most would like out of a leadoff guy, he remains an upgrade over Revere and Taylor and makes up for it with his speed.
In eleven games this season, Trea has already swiped five bags and smacked three triples. He is a threat on the basepaths no matter who’s on the mound, something the District hasn’t seen since Alfonso Soriano. It would be a huge mistake to continue hoping for Revere’s turnaround. While his struggles are a head scratcher, a team in first place cannot afford to have such a crucial spot in the lineup filled by an automatic out.
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