The Nationals held a news conference this evening to introduce draft picks Anthony Rendon, Alex Meyer and Brian Goodwin — respectively, the sixth, 23rd and 34th picks of this year’s draft. Here are the quick hits that came from the news conference, and a post-presser chat with Scott Boras, the agent for all three:
●The players will report to Florida tomorrow, where the Nationals will evaluate what kind of baseball shape they’re in.
●Anthony Rendon said his right shoulder, which limited him to a designated hitter role during his junior year at Rice, is feeling 100 percent and will not be an issue. Rendon was examined by Dr. Lewis Yocum and a Nationals team doctor before the Nationals signed Rendon to a $7.5 million major league contract.
●Meyer and Goodwin traveled to Alabama together to receive physicals from Dr. James Andrews before signing. Goodwin joked that it was nice to meet Andrews, but he never wants to see him again.
●Boras suggested the five teams who passed on Rendon may regret it, a strong statement because two of those earlier picks were also Boras clients. Boras called Rendon the surest thing in this year’s draft. “He’s the guy, for me, that’s a lock to be a major-leaguer.”
●Meyer is 6-feet-9 and 215 pounds, but Boras said doctors who examined him believe he is still growing and could fill out to 6-10 and 250. Meyer has hit 100 miles per hour with his fastball but still has physical maturing left to do. “The cake is still in the oven,” Boras said.
Meyer is already plenty tall. As the three players sat on high chairs for the news conference, Meyer told him, “Let us stand up. You sit down.”
●Bryce Harper’s hamstring, “is going to be fine,” Boras said. Harper, whom Class AA Harrisburg placed on the seven-day disabled list the day after he strained his hamstring, will not play again in the regular season. Harper, though, hopes to return in time to play in the Eastern League playoffs, should the Senators make it. They currently lead Bowie by half a game.
●Boras was asked to describe Goodwin’s game. “You seen Michael Bourn?” he replied.
●Ivan Rodriguez will be a free agent following this season, and Boras made a brief case for Rodriguez’s value to the Nationals based on his experience and his close relationship with Stephen Strasburg, another of his nine Nationals clients on their 40-man roster. Boras said the Nationals are going to need a veteran such as Rodriguez to shepherd the Nationals’ young talent and mentioned Baltimore specifically as a team loaded with young pitching talent, but adrift without the benefit of a veteran pitcher or catcher.
Rodriguez has been healing from a right oblique strain, experiencing multiple setbacks while trying to push himself before doctors wanted him to.
“Pudge is not a man that has high regard for medical science,” Boras said.
●Boras, who is based out of California, jokingly thanked the Lerners for their hospitality. “To actually have an earthquake to make us feel at home; I don’t know how the Lerners do it,” he said.