Syracuse Chiefs' play-by-play man Jason Bennetti started the internet's wheels turning early this afternoon when he reported on Twitter that 25-year-old outfielder Steven Souza, Jr. had been removed from today's game with the Washington Nationals' top affiliate after just half an inning:
Souza, an '07 3rd Round pick who's been up and down between the majors and minor leagues this season, making his MLB debut in mid-April and getting a total of nine plate appearances with the Nationals so far, entered play today with the Triple-A Chiefs with a .352/.434/.599 line, 23 doubles and 18 HRs in 90 games and 385 plate appearances.
The numbers are strikingly similar to those he produced in his breakout campaign in the Nationals' system at Double-A Harrisburg in 2013when he put up a .300/.396/.557 line with 23 doubles and 15 HRs in 77 games and 323 plate appearances for the Senators.
The previous season, Souza played at Low-A Hagerstown and High-A Potomac, putting up a combined .297/.366/.572 line with 22 doubles and 23 HRs in 97 games and 400 PAs.
Nats' skipper Matt Williams was asked after today's game if there was a roster move coming?
"Not that I know of," Williams responded. He then asked in return what was going on to prompt the reporter to ask?
When it was mentioned that Souza left today's game early, Williams said, "I'll have to go in and make sure that he's okay. Right now we're not making a roster move so we'll see what the reason for that is."
A litte while after today's game, however, both Washington Post writer Adam Kilgore and MLB.com's Bill Ladson learned that there was, in fact, a move coming:
Steven Souza Jr. is expected to join the Nats tomorrow, per a person familiar with the situation. http://t.co/BUuG6S2UHZ— Adam Kilgore (@AdamKilgoreWP) August 3, 2014
No word on what the issue is with McLouth.
In 79 games and 162 plate appearances with the Nationals this season, after he signed a 2-year/$10.75M free agent deal this winter, McLouth, a veteran of 10 MLB seasons, has a .173/.280/.237 line with six doubles, a home run and four stolen bases in limited playing time.
More info on both moves when it is available...
• Get to know Steven Souza, Jr.:
• We talked about the chatter with Souza, Strasburg's strong outing and more on the latest edition of Nats Nightly after today's game: