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Nationals add five Rule 5 eligible prospects to 40-Man Roster

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Washington announced this afternoon that they added Rafael Bautista, Jose Marmolejos, Raudy Read, Matt Skole and Austin Voth to the 40-Man roster to protect them from selection in the Rule 5 Draft.

MLB: Spring Training-New York Mets at Washington Nationals Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

Though GM Mike Rizzo and Co. in Washington’s front office had until later today to make the official decisions on which eligible prospects to add to the 40-Man roster and protect them from selection in the Rule 5 Draft, the Nationals announced the additions early this afternoon.

Outfielder Rafael Bautista, first baseman Jose Marmolejos, catcher Raudy Read, infielder Matt Skole and righty Austin Voth were added to the 40-man roster.

Bautista, 23, was signed as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic in 2012.

In 2016, he put up a .282/.344/.341 line, 12 doubles, four triples, four home runs and 56 stolen bases in 136 games and 607 plate appearances at Double-A Harrisburg.

Marmolejos, also 23, signed with the Nationals out of high school in 2011. He’s won the Nationals’ Minor League Player of the Year award in each of the last two seasons.

In 136 games and 579 PAs between High-A Potomac and Double-A this season, the left-handed hitting and throwing infielder put up a combined .289/.370/.475 line with 45 doubles, five triples and 13 HRs, with a .299 AVG (38 for 127), nine doubles, two HRs, 15 RBIs and 15 runs scored in 33 games after he was promoted to Double-A.

Raudy Read signed as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic in 2011.

The 23-year-old backstop put up a .262/.324/.415 line, 30 doubles and nine home runs in 101 games and 426 PAs at High-A Potomac in 2016, and, as the Nationals noted in a press release on today’s roster moves, “he was named the ‘Best Defensive Catcher’ in the Carolina League by Baseball America, throwing out 31 of 100 (31%) would-be base stealers.”

Skole, 27, is a 2011 5th Round pick out of Georgia Tech. In 2016, the infielder put up a .244/.337/.437 line, 22 doubles and 24 HRs in 140 games and 573 PAs at Triple-A in the Nationals’ system.

Skole, the Nationals note, “led Washington’s Minor League system in home runs (24) and RBIs (78) in 2016,” and he earned a Minor League Gold Glove for his work at first base with the Chiefs.

Voth, 24, pitched at Triple-A Syracuse in 2016, putting up a (7-9) mark in 27 games and 25 starts, over which he posted a 3.15 ERA, a 3.53 FIP, 57 walks (3.27 BB/9) and 133 Ks (7.62 K/9) in 157 innings.

Voth was a fifth round pick in 2013, was named the Nats’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2015.

With the additions, the Nationals’ 40-Man roster now stands at 36 players.