The Nationals have been on a roll under interim manager Jim Riggleman, winning six out of their last eight games entering Wednesday’s action.
Asked how much he would hate to see some of the players dealt before Friday’s trade deadline after a good run, Riggleman said, “Personally, I don’t think we are going to lose them, I really don’t. We have seen some trades made in the last few days that would probably lower the chances of our guys getting traded. … I don’t anticipate losing our guys.”
Nationals players such as Adam Dunn, Nick Johnson and Josh Willingham have been mentioned in trade talks. They are only going to be dealt if the Nationals get top prospects for them.
WASHINGTON, DC – The Nationals minor league report is a weekly window into the Nationals farm teams, with updated standings, league leaders, team and individual player stats, and the latest team and player news. Player bios can be found in the Scouting/Player Development section of the Nationals Media Guide (Pages 391-429).
This Week’s Top Headline
THE TAMING OF THE DREW: In 14 combined appearances with Single-A Potomac and Single-A Hagerstown, RHP Drew Storen has 33 strikeouts and 0 walks in 19.0 innings…Storen, Washington’s first-round pick (10th overall) in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, has fanned 22 and allowed just one hit over 11.0 scoreless innings in his last 8 games between Potomac and Hagerstown…prior to joining the P-Nats on July 19, the Stanford University product struck out 26 and did not walk a batter in 14.2 innings (11 games) with the Suns.
Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs
International League North Division
53-48, 2nd Place, 3.5 Games Back
CURIOUS JORGE: OF Jorge Padilla, a 2009 IL All-Star selection, leads full-season minor leaguers with a .363 batting average…Padilla has hit safely in 32 of his last 35 games, going 51-for-134 (.381) with 20 runs scored during the tear…his .423 on-base percentage ranks 2nd in the IL…he has reached base safely via hit, walk or HBP 132 times in 88 games (1.5 times per contest).
WHAT A RELIEF: RHP Jorge Sosa has offered scoreless relief in 12 of his last 13 appearances, posting a 0.93 ERA (2 ER/19.1 IP) along the way…as a reliever, he owns a 1.48 ERA (4 ER/24.1 IP) and a .182 (16-for-88) BAA in 12 games…overall, he is 1-2 with 2 saves and a 2.91 ERA in 18 games (4 starts)…he has 50 strikeouts against just 12 walks in 46.1 innings…Sosa signed with the Nationals as a minor-league free agent, December 18, 2008.
MY SHAIRON-A: RHP Shairon Martis scattered 5 hits in 7.0 scoreless frames, Monday vs. Louisville (Reds), to earn his 2nd straight win…in his last 2 starts, Martis has allowed 2 earned runs in 13.0 innings (1.38 ERA)…before being optioned to Syracuse on June 28, the 22-year-old went 5-3 with a 5.25 ERA in 15 starting assignments with the Nationals.
Double-A Harrisburg Senators
Eastern League Southern Division
46-55, 5th Place, 15.5 Games Back
MT. EVERTS: RHP Clint Everts is a combined 5-1 with a 1.41 ERA and a 3.5/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio (50 K/14 BB) in 29 appearances (44.2 innings) with Harrisburg and Potomac…since joining the Senators on June 9, he is 2-1 with 2 saves and a 1.82 ERA (5 ER/24.2 IP) in 16 games…prior to his promotion, Everts went 3-0 with 2 saves and a 0.90 ERA (2 ER/20.0 IP) in 13 appearances with Potomac…the Cypress, TX native was Montreal’s top pick (5th overall) in the 2002 First-Year Player Draft.
AN ARN(ESEN) AND A LEG: RHP Erik Arnesen‘s 10 wins are tops among Washington farmhands, while his 91 strikeouts rank 2nd…he is 10-4 with a 2.76 ERA in a combined 21 games (20 starts) with Harrisburg and Potomac…Arnesen has gone 6-3 with a 2.96 ERA (28 ER/85.0 IP) in 15 games (14 starts) since his promotion to Harrisburg on May 11…in 6 starts with the P-Nats, the 25-year-old went 4-1 with a 2.23 ERA (8 ER/32.2 IP)…Arnesen is scheduled to toe the rubber today at Trenton (Yankees).
I’M SEEING STARS…ALL-STARS: The Harrisburg Senators and the City of Harrisburg announced that the 2010 Eastern League All-Star Game will be held at Metro Bank Park on July 14, 2010.
Single-A Potomac Nationals
Carolina League Northern Division
First Half: 37-30, 2nd Place, 3.0 Games Back
Second Half: 21-11, First Place, 3.5 Games Ahead
NATIONAL TREASURE: 21-year-old 1B Chris Marrero leads the Carolina League with 108 hits, and ranks among the league leaders in batting average (3rd, .304), total bases (3rd, 174), slugging (4th, .490), OPS (4th, .864), home runs (t-5th, 14), RBI (6th, 60) and on-base percentage (6th, .374)…in 25 July games, he is hitting at a .372 (32-for-86) clip with 7 doubles, one triple, 4 homers, 16 RBI and 14 walks, which equates to .472 and .616 on-base and slugging percentages, respectively…Marrero was selected by Washington in the first round (15th overall) of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft.
ANOTHER PLAYER OF THE WEEK AWARD FOR THE P-NATS…: For the second consecutive week, a Potomac National has earned MiLB.com Single-A Carolina League Player of the Week honors…INF/OF Dan Nelson followed up last week’s winner, 1B Chris Marrero, by picking up his first POTW award of the season earlier this week…Nelson hit .391 (9-for-23) with 4 doubles, 2 triples and a league-leading 8 RBI during the week of July 20-26…for the season, the switch-hitter is batting .275 with 21 doubles, 2 triples, 5 homers and 35 RBI in 76 games…his .388 OBP ranks 4th in the CL…as the P-Nats utility man, Nelson has appeared in games at second base (47), outfield (15), third base (12), shortstop (1) and as a DH (1).
Single-A Hagerstown Suns
South Atlantic League Northern Division
First Half: 31-36, T-6th Place, 10.5 Games Back
Second Half: 12-20, 7th Place, 6.5 Games Back
SCINTILLATING SUN: C Derek Norris continues to dominate the South Atlantic League, leading the league in home runs (23), RBI (74), total bases (203) and OBP (.416)…the 20-year-old paces all catchers in professional baseball in homers and RBI…Norris ranks among full-season minor league leaders in home runs (t-5th) and slugging percentage (12th, .588)…the right-handed hitting slugger has posted a team-best 33 multi-hit games…he has reached base safely via hit (109), walk (56) or HBP (6) 171 times in 96 games (1.8 times per contest)…per Baseball America, he entered the season rated as the No. 6 prospect and top overall catching prospect in Washington’s system.
EVEN STEPHEN: 2B Stephen Lombardozzi paces the South Atlantic League with 74 runs scored, and ranks 2nd in hits with 112…in 96 games overall, the 20-year-old is hitting .299 with 19 doubles, 6 triples, 3 homers and 43 RBI…Lombardozzi was a 19th-round pick in the 2008 Draft out of St. Petersburg JC (FL).
HOLDER STEADY: RHP Trevor Holder, Washington’s 3rd-round pick in this June’s Draft, hurled 5.0 innings of one-run ball to earn his 2nd straight win, Saturday at Bowling Green (Rays)…the 22-year-old, who played collegiately at the University of Georgia, is 2-0 with a 3.53 ERA in 3 starts with the Suns.
Short-Season Single-A Vermont Lake Monsters
New York-Penn League Stedler Division
19-19, T-2nd Place, 4.0 Games Back
A NEW DESTIN-ATION: OF Destin Hood, Washington’s 2nd-round selection in the 2008 Draft, was promoted to Vermont on Monday from the rookie-level GCL Nationals…at the time of his promotion, Hood led the GCL with 24 RBI and a .614 slugging percentage…in 25 GCL contests, the 19-year-old hit a team-best .330 with 10 doubles, 3 homers and 18 runs scored.
EVAN ALMIGHTY: After being drafted by Washington in the 29th round of the 2009 Draft, LHP Evan Bronson has gone 2-0 with one save and a 1.13 ERA in his first 10 games as a pro…he has limited opponents to a .184 (16-for-87) BAA…the southpaw has struck out 16 while walking just one in 24.0 innings of work…Bronson played collegiately at Trinity College (TX).
Gulf Coast League Nationals
Gulf Coast League East Division
16-11, 2nd Place, 2.5 Games Back
PEREZ DISPENSER: OF Eury Perez is hitting .318 with one double, one triple, one home run, 8 RBI and 12 walks in 19 games…he has recorded a team-high 9 stolen bases…Perez, 19, ranks 3rd in the GCL with a .438 OBP…he signed with Washington as an international free agent, April 13, 2007.
ALL SET WITH BRETT: 1B Brett Newsome leads current GCL players with a .597 slugging percentage and a 1.029 OPS…14 of his 24 hits overall have been of the extra-base variety (9 doubles, 2 triples, 3 homers)…the left-handed hitting slugger has hammered right-handed pitching, batting .420 (21-for-50) with a 1.352 OPS…in 27 games overall, he is hitting .312 with 16 RBI, 19 runs scored and 16 walks.
Even if first baseman Nick Johnson is not traded before the trade deadline, the Nationals have to deal with the fact that he will become a free agent after the season.
According to baseball sources, Johnson wants a two-year deal and to make more than the three-year, $16.5 million extension he signed during the spring of 2006. Whether the Nationals give him such a deal is not known.
MLB.com approached Johnson twice about his contract status, but he declined to comment.
Johnson has had an injury-plagued career during his time with Nationals/Expos. He has played only two full seasons — 2005 and ’06 — during his time with the team.
At the same time, the Nationals don’t have a player ready to replace Johnson. There has been talk all season that Adam Dunn could do the job, but he doesn’t have the defensive skills that Johnson has.
Johnson has played in 96 games and is hitting .295 with six home runs and 42 RBIs this season.
Since becoming interim manager of the Nationals, Jim Riggleman has a held a team meeting after every game. The sessions last no more than a few minutes.
He usually tells his players what went right or wrong during the game. His most famous meeting came on Friday after a 6-2 loss to the Padres at Nationals Park. He told his players that night they didn’t give 100 percent effort. It didn’t help that Washington made four errors and committed a passed ball in the game.
“Generally, throughout the time that I’ve managed, I always felt like if we lost a ballgame, I wanted to make sure that I was visible in the clubhouse, just showing them that we lost that game — I lost it, we lost it,” Riggleman said. “When we win a game, I don’t spend too much time in there, just touch on a couple of things, maybe point out some details of the game that we did that may have gone unnoticed.”
Outfielder Josh Willingham dominated Monday’s game by hitting two grand slams. After the game, Riggleman pointed out to the players that outfielder Adam Dunn made two great plays in left field and advanced to second on a wild pitch.
“If you are having a year like we are having, you just have to keep giving it to them that we are not quitting,” Riggleman said. “We are going to keep getting after it. If you keep getting after it, they are going to feel that way, too.”
Riggleman said he would not hold meetings on an everyday basis if the team was doing well.
The Nationals agreed to terms with right-hander Andrew “Dean” Weaver, who was selected in the seventh round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Georgia.
Weaver posted a team-leading 10 saves as a junior at Georgia in ’09, going 4-2 with a 3.60 ERA in 29 relief appearances. During his three-year collegiate career, Weaver, 21, went 11-6 with 12 saves and tallied a 2.65/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio (106 strikeouts/40 walks) in 122 1/3 innings.
With Monday’s signing, the Nationals have now agreed to terms with 26 players from the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, including nine of their top 12 picks.
Former Nationals manager Manny Acta came to Nationals Park early Sunday afternoon. He did not stay for the game between the Nationals and Padres.
MLB.com was aware on Friday that Acta would be at the stadium, but Acta said via e-mail that he wasn’t going to make a comment.
In 13 combined appearances with Class-A Potomac and Hagerstown, right-hander Drew Storen has 31 strikeouts and no walks in 18 innings.
Storen, Washington’s first round pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, has fanned 20 and allowed just one hit in 10 scoreless innings in his past seven games between Potomac and Hagerstown.
Prior to joining Potomac on July 19, the Stanford product struck out 26 batters and did not walk a batter in 14 2/3 innings with Hagerstown.