Washington Nationals: Minor League Primer
By Blake Finney
High A – Potomac Nationals
Arguably the most successful Washington Nationals affiliate is the Potomac Nationals. Since 2008, they’ve appeared in the play-offs 6 times. This includes championships in 2008, 2010 and 2014. Pretty impressive.
Yet again, the P-Nats boast a whole host of former high-round picks on their roster to start the year. And with some likely mid-season call-ups from Hagerstown, their roster should only get stronger.
They are also the undisputed kings of the giveaways out of the affiliates. Some of the highlights this year include the Trea Turner Road Runner Bobblehead and Michael A. Tater Potato Statue.
Main Attraction: Carter Kieboom
Possessing one of the best last names in all of baseball, Carter Kieboom is also making a name for himself as one of the best prospects in the Nationals system.
He’s certainly lived up to the hype so far in minor-league ball, after he was drafted in the first round back in 2016. He’s hit .277 with 14 home runs in just 99 games in the Nats system.
His older brother Spencer Kieboom is also in the Nationals organization, with the Syracuse Chiefs. It’s not out of the question that Carter could join him there by the end of the season. However, getting to Double A Harrisburg is probably the goal for the young shortstop this year.
Keep an eye on: Blake Perkins
From one of the best last names to one of the best first names in baseball. Nothing to do with the fact it’s my first name, honest. Thankfully, Blake Perkins has one thing that I lack. Speed, and a lot of it too.
In his first full professional season last year, he swiped 31 bases for Hagerstown. He also showed a reasonable eye at the plate posting a .354 OBP despite only hitting .254 last season.
Perkins’ strongest tool has always been his glove in centerfield. But if he can continue to develop his hitting from both side of the plate, he could turn into a serviceable leadoff hitter with the Washington Nationals later on in his career.