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Wire Taps: Nationals' outfielder Steven Souza named Triple-A International League MVP

Steven Souza, 25, tore up Triple-A pitching this season, and this afternoon he was named the AAA International League MVP. Souza has been up and down between the majors and the Nationals' top affiliate this season and he'll be back with the Nats soon.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The big news today comes from the Washington Nationals' top minor league affiliate.

Steven Souza, 25, who, according to a press release from the Nats, "...led the International League in almost every statistical offensive category," was named the Triple-A International League's Most Valuable Player and its Rookie of the Year.

In 91 games and 386 plate appearances with the Chiefs, Souza, who has been up to the majors three times this season, has put up a .354/.435/.601 line, "... all of which lead the International League," according to Amanda Comak's story on the awards at the Curly-W blog.

Souza's hit 23 doubles, two triples and 18 HRs for the Chiefs.

The Nats' '07 3rd Round pick injured his shoulder running into the outfield wall in Turner Field and was placed on the 15-Day DL on August 10th with a left shoulder contusion.

In addition to Souza's award, Chiefs' skipper Billy Gardner, Jr. was named the International League's Manager of the Year. Chiefs' infielders Emmanuel Burriss, Brandon Laird and Souza were named to the IL's post-season All-Star Team as well. Congrats all around. Now on to the links. And lots of them... starting RIGHT NOW!!!!:


• "After months of inactivity, representatives of the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals hope to move closer to a two-team spring training facility in West Palm Beach." - "Astros, Nationals to unveil spring training proposal in September" - Staff Report

• "Representatives from the Astros and the Nationals will present a proposed joint Spring Training complex in West Palm Beach, Fla., to the Palm Beach County Tourism Development Council on Sept. 11 and Palm Beach County Commissioners on Sept. 23." - "Houston Astros, Washington Nationals set to make Spring Training site proposal" - Brian McTaggart, News


• "With one quick flick of his wrists in the sixth inning on Monday night, Anthony Rendon launched his 17th home run of the season." - "Anthony Rendon’s surprising power" - James Wagner, Washington Post

• "Matt Williams is loathe to look ahead, certainly as far ahead as October when the calendar still reads August." - "A primer on postseason roster eligibility" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• "In the eighth inning, Harper’s power showed. Juan Gutierrez, a right-hander and the last pitcher in the Giants bullpen, threw him a high-and-inside fastball." - "Bryce Harper starting to break out" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

• "Cabrera proved he was OK when he got a chance to pinch-hit in the ninth inning of Monday night's 3-2 loss." - "With tight right side feeling better, Asdrubal pinch-hits" - Erik Bacharach, News

• "The Nationals ground through at-bats and played crisp games during their recent streak. Monday, they lacked that sharp edge." - "Nationals vs. Phillies: Nats open road trip with 3-2 loss in Philadelphia" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

• "The Nationals haven’t classified the side discomfort as an oblique injury because, according to Williams, it hasn’t behaved like an oblique strain..." - "Asdrubal Cabrera’s side feels better, could play Tuesday" - James Wagner, Washington Post

• "Cabrera said he has never dealt with this type of injury in his career, so he has no real reference point for this. But he remains confident it’s not serious, and understands it’s best to take it easy for now." - "Asdrubal Cabrera out of Nationals lineup but not seriously injured" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• "But despite the fact that it's been practically all sunshine and rainbows for the NL East leaders, nothing has been clinched yet and there's still plenty of work to be done." - "Nationals Pastime: Williams on Cabrera and maintaining the momentum" - Brian Eller,

• "So Monday night’s loss was less about a ninth-inning rally that came up short and more about the little things the Nationals didn’t do well earlier in the evening at Citizens Bank Park." - "Nationals can’t pull off dramatic rally this time in Philadelphia" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• "He started that thing on the backside of my hip and it came back over the plate, kind of like a Bartolo Colon." - Bryce Harper"Nationals Pastime: Williams, Harper and Ramos discuss Nats' 3-2 loss to Phillies" - Dan Kolko,

• "The biggest sure-bets for September are Aaron Barrett, Michael Taylor and Blake Treinen. At this point, it would be very surprising if any of those three were not brought in." - "State of the Nats: Final week in August" - Chase Hughes, Nats Insider

• "Of all the divisional rivals, Washington seems to bring out the best in Hamels." - "Washington Nationals at Philadelphia Phillies - August 26, 2014" - Maria Torres, Preview

• "Burnett has been on tonight. He has 10 strikeouts through five innings. In two of the innings, the third and the fifth, every out was a strikeout." - "Burnett not allowing contact (Phillies win 3-2)" - Byron Kerr,

• "Williams said the Nationals would add a few position players and a few pitchers. Here’s some speculation at who they’ll be and why..." - "Nationals discussing September call-ups" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post

• "This was by no means a poor start for Roark, but he did have to battle some. The Phillies really made him work early, forcing 32 pitches to only five batters in the first inning." - "Instant analysis: Phillies 3, Nats 2" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• Your Daily Message from the Dalai Lama on Twitter (@DalaiLama):


• "12. Washington (Nationals Park): Fans watching from the upper deck get a bonus view of the Capitol rotunda, a scene to enjoy while you're eating your Shake Shack burger." - "Rating each of the major league ballparks" - LA Times

• "Some 35 years later 'Nationals Magic' — or some form thereof — might have come to fruition during a 10-game homestand that ended Aug. 24 at Nationals Park." - "A magical season for the Orioles and Nationals" - David Driver,

• "Players like Marlon Byrd and Cole Hamels, who could command interest, were claimed on waivers earlier in the month, pulled back and cannot be moved." - "Ruben Amaro Jr. talks waiver deals, September callups before Phillies top Nationals" - Stephen Gross,

• "Sometime next month, Tyler Clippard will jog in from the Washington Nationals bullpen in a style not quite like any other and make an equally unlikely bit of history." - "Nationals reliever on verge of unprecedented run" - Paul White USA Today Sports

• "The Nationals, MLB and MASN this week are scheduled to hold a status conference with Justice Lawrence Marks to review scheduling and next steps in the case." - "Orioles get the upper hand over Nationals, MLB as MASN battle drags on" - Eric Fisher, Baltimore Business Journal

• "After his last start, Phillies right-hander A.J. Burnett said he was leaning towards retirement at the end of this season." - "Phillies' A.J. Burnett K's 12 in 3-2 win over Washington Nationals" - Bill Evans,

• "Leadoff doubles in both the seventh and eighth innings presented Washington with chances to cut into the lead, but in both instances, the runner never advanced past second." - "Washington Nationals at Philadelphia Phillies - August 25, 2014" - Erik Bacharach, WSH Recap


Class-A Auburn: "You only see so many walk-off victories a season. After all, it's one of the most exciting moments in baseball for a reason. But two in one night? In the same building?" - "Doubledays double walk-off in doubleheader" - Evan Weston, Auburn Doubledays News

High-A Potomac: "The Potomac Nationals (72-55, 34-24) were buried by the Frederick Keys (60-68, 28-33) 6-0 in their final 2014 regular season home game at Pfitzner Stadium..." - "Potomac Nationals Recap vs. Frederick Keys.8.25.14" - Potomac Nationals News

Double-A Harrisburg: "Felipe Rivero was dominant again with six shutout innings in which he walked none and five strikeouts. The lefty threw an efficient 63 pitches, including 42 strikes." - "Senators End Losing Streak Behind Skole" - Perry Mattern, Harrisburg Senators News

• "Left-hander Felipe Rivero threw six scoreless innings and infielder Matt Skole scored or drove in all five runs Monday for Double-A Harrisburg..." - "Nationals prospects Felipe Rivero, Matt Skole star in Double-A Harrisburg's win" - Teddy Cahill, News

Triple-A Syracuse: "The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, defeated the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, 5-3, on Monday night from Coca-Cola Park." - "Rafael Martin, Matt Grace lead Syracuse Chiefs to win over Lehigh Valley IronPigs" - Syracuse Chiefs News

• "Steven Souza Jr., who led the International League in almost every statistical offensive category, was named the league’s Most Valuable Player as well as its Rookie of the Year..." - "Steven Souza Jr. named IL MVP and Rookie of the Year; Billy Gardner Jr. named Manager of the Year" - Amanda Comak, Curly W Live

• "Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs outfielder Steven Souza Jr. has been named International League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year, according to a club press release." - "Souza named International League MVP; Gardner, Burriss and Laird honored" - Byron Kerr,

• "Souza had 31 multihit efforts in 91 games for Syracuse, totaling 18 homers and 70 RBI over that stretch." - "Top prospects ready to take the next step" - Kevin T Czerwinski, USA TODAY Sports


• "While quiet offensively, Bryce Harper (0-for-4, 3 K) was awarded an outfield assist in the seventh after throwing out Domonic Brown, who was trying to stretch a single into a double." - "Washington Nationals Game 129 Review: Phillies Defeat Nats in Pitchers Duel" - Brian Skinnell, District Sports Page

• "Here’s some sad news: It appears almost certain that the Phillies will finish behind the Nats in attendance for the first time since 2005." - "There’s an ad for Nats Park in the latest Philadelphia Magazine" - Dan Steinberg, The Washington Post

• "Burnett (W, 7-14) dominated the Nats all night, retiring the first eight he faced before a single from Roark." - "Burnett Silences Nats in Loss to Phillies" - Andrew Flax, The Nats Blog

• "I must break Roark" - Harper, Nationals Baseball


Mets: "David Wright experienced neck spasms that forced him out of Sunday’s game against the Dodgers, but his bigger problem seems to be his left shoulder." - "Mets hitting coach Lamar Johnson says David Wright is still dealing with shoulder pain" - Kristie Ackert, NY Daily News

Braves: "Maddeningly inconsistent. Swing-and-miss. Long ball or long droughts. Largely as a result of their disappointing offense, the Braves were eight games behind National League East leader..." - "Boom-or-bust offense has undermined Braves in ‘14" - David O'Brien,

Marlins: "Yelich impressed Scioscia again. His fourth three-hit game in a week came in support of a dominant Jarred Cosart..." -"Jarred Cosart gets plenty of offensive support in Miami Marlins' rout of Los Angeles Angels" - Juan C. Rodriguez, Sun Sentinel