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Nationals name Lucas Giolito Minor League Pitcher and Steven Souza Minor League Player of the Year

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The Washington Nationals announced their organizational Minor League awards this afternoon, naming Lucas Giolito the Minor League Pitcher of the Year and Steven Souza the Minor League Player of the Year for 2014.

July 17, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; Washington Nationals first round draft pick Lucas Giolito in the dugout before a game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park. Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports
July 17, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; Washington Nationals first round draft pick Lucas Giolito in the dugout before a game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park. Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports
Photo © Joy R. Absalon/USA TODAY Sports

The Washington Nationals announced their Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Year this afternoon, giving 20-year-old, 2012 1st Round pick Lucas Giolito the 2014 Pitcher of the Year nod and 25-year-old outfielder Steven Souza, Jr. the Player of the Year award after the '07 3rd Round pick put together a strong campaign at Triple-A and made his MLB debut this season...

Giolito, in his first full season back after Tommy John surgery, was (10-2) in 20 starts for the Low-A Hagerstown Suns over which he put up a 2.20 ERA and a 3.16 FIP with 28 walks (2.57 BB/9) and 110 Ks (10.10 K/9) in 98 IP.

"He understands the everyday-ness of a full season at this point, what he has to do to take the ball every fifth day and he's really done a nice job for us." -Doug Harris on Nats' prospect Lucas Giolito

The top prospect in the Nats' organization coming into the season on just about everyone's list, Giolito was named the South Atlantic League's Most Outstanding pitcher and the SAL's Most Outstanding MLB prospect.

Nationals' Assistant GM and VP of Player Development Doug Harris talked to MLB Network Radio host Grant Paulsen about Giolito's season in early August, right before the right-hander was shut down for the year.

"Really pleased with what he's been able to accomplish," Harris said. "He's taken the ball -- we shut him down for a short period of time, one of our goals this year was to get him through a full season, so we had to really manage the innings, we skipped him a few times really at the midway point, but he understands the everyday-ness of a full season at this point, what he has to do to take the ball every fifth day and he's really done a nice job for us. Really pleased."

"Souza is a big physical toolsy player who finally figured it out at the tender age of 25. He's a great success story for our player development..." -Mike Rizzo on Steven Souza on 106.7 the FAN in D.C.

Souza, in his eighth season in the Nationals' organization after he was drafted out of Cascade High School in Cascade, Washington in 2007, put up a .350/.432/.590 line with 25 doubles and 18 HRs in 96 games and 407 plate appearances for Triple-A Syracuse.

The right-handed hitting and throwing outfielder was up and down to the majors all season after making his MLB debut on April 13th in Atlanta and in a September 17th game against the Braves hit his first major league home run on his second major league hit.

"That ball was hit a long way," Nats' skipper Matt Williams said after the 445 ft blast in Turner Field. "He's got power to all fields. He had an incredible year in the minor leagues this year."

Both players will be honored in a pregame ceremony before Thursday's series finale with the Mets.