After monster nights on Tuesday for the three top prospects, Dylan Crews, James Wood, and Brady House , transition to Wednesday, and Wood and House shined again, but none as much as Robert Hassell III who went homer, double, and single to finish a triple shy of a cycle. On a rehab assignment in the Florida Complex League, Elijah Green put his tools on display with a double, single, walk, and stolen base to let everyone know that he is still alive and kicking ###. The only downer was Crews who hit two oppo shots to the right field warning track that were both caught, and he finished with a tough 0-5. Hey, those games will happen. We all know how BABIP works, and they all don’t fall in.
This is all good news on the same day that Baseball America published their post-trade deadline Top-30s for all the teams. The Nats had few surprises except for the fact that House was still listed as a shortstop on their report since he hasn’t played there all season after an offseason switch to third base. Other than that there were only a few spots to debate. Daylen Lile was the biggest mover in a positive direction. T.J. White fell out of the Top-10 to №16 seemed about right. With Cade Cavalli‘s injury, none of the top prospects graduated off of the list, and without some unforeseen callup, this list should stay roughly the same going into next season — unless a player really steps up or stumbles to the end of the season. Now, Jose Ferrer is listed at №20, and Jake Alu is listed at №23 — and both should come off the list in mid-September with two players sliding up.
Speaking of trade deadline moves, Baseball America placed the two acquisitions from the Jeimer Candelario trade so far down on the Nats rankings that DJ Herz barely made it at №25, and Kevin Made, who was the other player in the trade, did not make the list. Made has to be close to №30, and might get bumped up when Alu graduates off of the list -or- Made can do it on merit and play so well to finish the season that they push him up the list. So far, Made is 2-for-19 at High-A Wilmington with no extra base hits.
FanGraphs ranked the Nats’ farm as the №3 system in all of baseball, and the the Top-16 is so stacked that many names you would expect like Cole Henry got pushed off of that part of the list. It is no surprise that Made didn’t make it. Herz has a lot to prove to show that he can be an MLB caliber player in the future. Two years ago, Herz would have easily been in the Nats’ Top-16 — but times have changed. This “Sweet-16” as I like to call it is full of future MLB talent. But players like Alu who are not ranked as high can make it to the Majors if they impress enough. Look at former 1st rounder, Blake Rutherford. He finally made it to the Majors. Staying there and being productive is the key when you get the opportunity. Rutherford is not in the Nats’ Top-30.
All of that bodes well for players trying to make it to the show that it takes more than prospect rankings. Getting there and staying there are two different things. Right now, the Nats have “Job Opening” signs, and when rosters expand by two players on September 1, who will we see added?