The Nationals have two of the top 100 prospects in baseball. Here is what you need to know about them.
MLB Pipeline released their latest top 100 prospects for 2020 and once again the Nationals are on the list thanks to Carter Kieboom and Luis Garcia. Kieboom and Garcia ranked at 21st and 97th respectively. This is Kieboom’s fourth straight year on the list, while this will mark Garcia’s third straight year.
Baring any last second trades, Kieboom is the front runner to be the Nationals starting third baseman for the upcoming season. Kieboom started as a shortstop but has been learning third base in order to fill the hole left behind by Anthony Rendon. Kieboom had this to say about playing third, “I grew up playing a lot of third base,”. Obviously, at the professional level, I don’t have a lot of reps at third base, as well as second base. … But I really feel comfortable at both of them. … Third base is something I’m really looking forward to giving a shot.”
Manager Dave Martinez was positive the teams top prospect attempting to man the hot corner. He stated, ““He’s going to get a shot,”. “He’s going to play third base at Spring Training, and I’m looking forward to watching him play over there every day. He’s got a bright future, I’ve said that before. He’s matured a lot.” After an awful, first call up in the beginning of 2019, expect Kieboom to show that was a fluke.
Garcia has slowly dropped down the list after being ranked at 81 and 91 in 2018 and 2019 respectively. After being promoted to Double A in 2019, he struggled to a tune of a .257 average, with four homers, 30 RBI’s, and an OPS of .617. To put it in perspective, in 2018 at Single A, Garcia hit .298, with seven homers, 54 RBI’s, and an OPS of .742. Still he is only 21, and has room to grow. Garcia will probably start the season at Double A and work his way up. He play’s shortstop, but similar to Kieboom, don’t be surprised if he switches to second.