Washington Nationals: Five Takeaways From The Grapefruit League

rjuckett
Mar 24, 2017; West Palm Beach, FL, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Jeremy Guthrie (80) hands the ball to manager Dusty Baker (12) and leaves the game against the St. Louis Cardinals during a spring training game at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 24, 2017; West Palm Beach, FL, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Jeremy Guthrie (80) hands the ball to manager Dusty Baker (12) and leaves the game against the St. Louis Cardinals during a spring training game at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
6 of 6
Next

TREA TURNER LEADING OFF

The consensus was before the start of Spring Training that Turner and Eaton would audition for the leadoff spot in the potent Nationals lineup.

More from District on Deck

Turner’s ability to intimidate pitchers with his speed made the competition pointless. His six stolen bases and three home runs makes you think of legends Rickey Henderson and Tim Raines. Not only can Turner turn a walk into a double or triple, he has the power to start a game with a home run.

The ability to be a run scoring threat from the first pitch on earned Turner the spot. With Eaton, Harper and Daniel Murphy following, pitchers cannot make mistakes with Turner. He will make you pay.

Inexperienced pitchers will lose focus with the batter trying to keep Turner tied to first or allow the stolen base and set up the immediate runner in scoring position. As long as he reaches base, he is a threat to run.

Oh, he has good instincts and range at short too. Although it may not be Gold Glove stuff, Turner’s speed will rob hits and end rallies.

Although Eaton never got out of the gate in West Palm Beach, unless Turner goes into an extended slump, Eaton will not bat leadoff.

Classic home run hitters intimidate pitchers because they can beat you with a single swing. Turner knows he can do it with a walk. He reads pitchers well and knows when to be aggressive.

Next: The Closer Is Treinen

He is an All-Star in the making.

facebooktwitterreddit