Players to watch from the Nationals accelerated development camp
Sunday, February 27, 2011; 2:41 PM
The Nationals released their accelerated development roster, which is comprised the minor league players whom the Nationals chose to get an early start on spring. Typically, they're chosen because the Nationals see something in them, so this is virtually the cream of the Nationals' minor league crop. From that roster, here are some of the more notable names: *A.J. Cole, RHP: The Nats picked Cole, 19, in the fourth round last year of Aviedo High. He possessed some of the best stuff in the draft, which is why the Nats paid him a $2 million bonus, a record at the time for a fourth-round pick. *Rafael Martin, RHP: Martin is the reliever the Nationals signed last February at the start of spring out of the Mexican League. He was an all-star at Class AA Harrisburg last year. *Jack McGeary, LHP: McGeary recently earned his degree from Stanford, the fruits of a unique arrangement in which the Nationals paid for McGeary's education while he played for the Nationals. He is completing recovery from Tommy John surgery and should begin pitching in full soon. *Tom Milone, LHP: The Nationals' 2010 minor league pitcher of the year. *Brad Peacock, RHP: He pitched as a reliever in the Arizona Fall League, but the Nationals still want him to start. He struck out 9.4 batters per nine innings last year at Class A Potomac and Class AA Harrisburg while walking 3.0, a ratio that makes his 4.50 ERA deceiving. *Robbie Ray, LHP: Scouts rave about Ray, a hard thrower who fell to the 12th round last year because it was assumed he had a strong commitment to pitch for Arkansas in college. The Nationals lured him with a $799,000 signing bonus. *Daniel Rosenbaum, LHP: He made it to Class A Potomac at 22 last season, then went 3-2 with a 2.09 ERA in seven starts. Average stuff, his competitiveness and, more importantly, his command could make him a big leaguer. *Sammy Solis, LHP: The third piece of the Nationals' 2010 draft pitching haul. Solis, 22, pitched in the Arizona Fall League after a short stint at Class A Hagerstown last season. The Nationals' second-round choice will probably start the year back in Hagerstown, but he could move quickly through the system. *Ryan Tatusko, RHP: One of the pitchers the Nationals' acquired from Texas in the Cristian Guzman trade. *David Freitas, C: A 15th rounder from Hawaii, Freitas was the first Nationals' draft pick to sign last year. He promptly hit .307 with a .408 on-base percentage at Vermont. *Rick Hague, SS: The Nationals' third-round pick last year. *Steve Lombardozzi, 2B: He's 5-11, 175 pounds but many Nationals evaluators believe he'll be a major leaguer someday. He played in the Fall League last year. *Tyler Moore, 1B: The Nationals' 2010 minor league player of the year. He was Babe Ruth for two months last year. *Eury Perez, OF: He's widely regarded as the Nationals' best outfield prospect following Bryce Harper. He was the Dominican Winter League rookie of the year this offseason. Last year, he stole 64 bases in 77 tries at Hagerstown.