Four Nats in Baseball America's Top 100 Prospects
By Cameron Eck
Baseball America came out with its preseason top 100 prospect rankings today, and four Nationals made the list; James Wood at 11, Robert Hassell III at 57, Elijah Green at 58, and Cade Cavalli at 61. Three of those four were not with the Nats organization to start the year, as James Wood and Robert Hassell were added in the Juan Soto trade, while Elijah Green was drafted fifth overall in the 2022 draft.
The Nats were tied for the ninth most prospects listed in the top 100 list. The Orioles came in with the most at eight total prospects, including Gunnar Henderson at number one overall. As for the NL East, the Nats had the second most on the list behind the Mets, who had six total prospects on the list.
Obviously, the most exciting thing to see as a Nats fan is seeing James Wood just barely outside of the top ten. Wood had the best introduction to the organization after the Juan Soto trade out of any of the other prospects. He was crushing baseballs in Fredericksburg, and there was a stretch where it seemed like we saw a new James Wood highlight on Twitter every night. He has the ability to drive the ball to all fields, and with size comparable to Aaron Judge (same height, Judge has 40 pounds on him), there is a ton to get excited about with Wood's future.
Hassell III came in as the second best prospect within the organization. Ranked ahead of Wood last year prior to the trade, Hassell took a while to get acquainted with his new team. His numbers between Harrisburg and Wilmington last year won't pop out at you, however he is still a bright spot within the organization. For more on Hassell's overall package, we did a prospect spotlight that can be found here.
Elijah Green came in as the third best for the Nats, and he is likely to work his way up this list as he gets more experience under his belt. There is a lot to like about Green, as he is very athletic and has a good combination of power and speed. The Nats may have a bit of a logjam for outfielders down the road between Wood, Hassell, and Green, among others, but that is a good problem to have. If you want to keep tabs on Elijah Green during the offseason, I recommend giving his dad, Pro Bowl Tight End Eric Green, a follow on Twitter (@ericgreen86), as he is regularly posting Elijah's workouts.
Last on the list is the most familiar face on the board, Cade Cavalli. Nats fans have been excited about Cavalli ever since he got drafted in the first round of 2020 out of Oklahoma. He got a taste of the big leagues last year in a rough debut against the Reds. A rough start should not concern anyone, as there is a large body of work in the minors that shows what kind of swing and miss stuff that he has. Of the four prospects on his list, he appears to be the only one who will spend considerable time in the majors, as he is expected to start the season with the club.