In spite a number of prospects graduating to the major league level over the last few seasons, Washington Nationals' GM Mike Rizzo talked before this year's draft about continuing to take the best players available in spite of perceived organizational needs.
"We take every draft independent of what the system is like and what the organization has, and it’s kind of an entity of its own," Rizzo explained.
Through the draft and trades, the Nationals continue to stock the system with talent, signing 17 of their top 20 draft picks so far this summer after a trade this winter that added two former first-round picks to their ranks.
Both of those prospects, acquired in the three-team trade with the Tampa Bay Rays and San Diego Padres, Trea Turner, who is currently playing at Triple-A Syracuse, and Joe Ross, who debuted in the majors earlier this season, were listed on Baseball America's Midseason Top 50 prospects list when it was released this morning.
Ross, 22, landed at no.31 on Baseball America's list.
He got a surprise call to the majors earlier this season when the Nationals' rotation was beset by injuries to both Doug Fister and Stephen Strasburg.
Ross went (2-1) with a 2.66 ERA, 1.14 FIP, two walks (0.89 BB/9) and 23 Ks (10.18 K/9) in 20 ⅓ IP before he returned to Double-A. Baseball America's writers said it was a good glimpse of the future for the Nationals:
"A solid three-start major league cameo has shown what the Nationals can expect to see regularly before long."
Turner, 22, and a Padres' 1st Round pick last June, was ranked 9th overall on BA's list. So far this season, in stops at Double-A in San Diego and Washington's systems and Triple-A with the Nats, he's put up a combined .311/.362/.456 line with 17 doubles, five triples and six home runs in 79 games and 340 plate appearances. He was the player to be named later in the trade this winter, and came to the Nationals a year after he signed for a $2.9M bonus. Baseball America's writers seem to think he's a quick-to-the-majors-type:
"It won’t be long before Turner is remembered for much more than being a player to be named later."
Giolito, 20, landed at no.2 on Baseball America's List, behind only Los Angeles Dodgers' shortstop Cory Seager.
Through 11 games, nine of them starts, since he came on in relief after rehab appearances by Aaron Barrett, the 2012 1st Round pick is (3-4) with a 2.76 ERA, a 1.68 FIP, 15 walks (2.30 BB/9) and 76 Ks (11.66 K/9) in 58 ⅔ IP:
"Baseball’s best pitching prospect is on a steady climb to the Nationals’ rotation."
Check out the rest of BA's Midseason Top 50 through the link below: