6 – The Field (1%)
In all likelihood, the first player to go into Cooperstown with a Washington Nationals hat will be one of the five primary candidates that we’ve already mentioned. But by some miracle, if it’s not one of those five, we look at some very outside candidates.
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Yes, Juan Soto‘s career has barely gotten started yet, but under the assumption that everybody above whiffs on the Hall of Fame, then Soto may be the next best bet. The 20-year-old smashed several rookie and teenage records last season, so could easily have a HoF worthy career if he simply stays on the path that he’s already on. He also has to stay with the Nats long-term, of course.
Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon is now heading into his free agent year, and could easily be playing elsewhere for a large portion of his career. But should he stay, which seems more likely than leaving at this point, then he certainly will have a case for Cooperstown, though he would likely finally need to get recognition from the media that he so richly deserves.
In a similar vein to Rendon, Trea Turner could also easily ascend himself to Hall of Fame caliber if he can take the next step in his career. He has the all-around game that could lend itself to a HoF worthy career, especially if he can tap into the 70-steal speed that he has more frequently the rest of the way.
After the Washington Nationals went through its infancy following to move to D.C. in 2005, it may start putting forward more and more Hall of Fame candidates. Max Scherzer is by far and away the favorite for that honor, but there could be several following suit not too long after him.