Nationals Have Decided Who To Draft First Overall

The Nationals have decided who they will draft with the first overall pick in next month's draft, GM Mike Rizzo told Mark Zuckerman of CSN Washington (Twitter link). It would be a shock if the team drafted somebody other than Bryce Harper, though Rizzo didn't say who the club plans to select.

Harper, who appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated as a 16-year-old last year, has lived up to the hype. He hit four homers, a triple and a double in one game last weekend and ESPN.com's Keith Law says there's no argument for taking anyone else. The Nationals, who say they have no concerns about Harper's character, were still considering a handful of players earlier in the month.


13 Responses to Nationals Have Decided Who To Draft First Overall Leave a Reply

  1. bjsguess 5 years ago

    For those curious … after this last weekend Harper stands with a 442/524/986 line. Good for an OPS above 1500. This while playing with a wood bat against talent that is 2-3 years older than he is.Few other things worth pointing out. 18-22 in SB’s. Next closest offensive player on his team has 12 HR’s (compared to his 29). He also has nearly twice as many total bases (212 vs 132) as the next best player on his team. His team, BTW, is pretty darn good. Heading to the Jr College WS if I read the last report on him right.

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      “against talent”

      Does no one read the quote I kept posting a month ago? His college league isn’t that good outside of his own team which would likely have been very good without him. I think it said only one team was good competition and the other teams combined to have I think it was 8 drafted players. That tells me that Harper isn’t playing even single-A players most the time. Impressive for a 17 year old – Yes. Outstanding, and impossible? not really. I could see other prep league bats being able to preform like that if they were in his shoes, such as Justin Upton or maybe even his brother.

      • jwredsox 5 years ago

        btw, I’m not saying that Harper isn’t the best choice in the draft but I think people are overrating him way too much. He is very good but I’ve seen scouts who don’t put him on that upper echelon level with Arod or Griffey Jr. like some people think he is. He is very good, but the legend has outlived the truth (like his 571ft hr, hittracker puts that at the impossible level under normal wind conditions unless he can swing the bat at just under 140 mph which is almost impossible in itself)

        • aap212 5 years ago

          Straw man argument. EVERYONE is saying that while he’s the best player in the draft, he’s not as good as the A-Rod, Justin Upton, Strasburg level of 1.1 pick.

  2. Ian_Smell 5 years ago

    Do you guys think that Harper will be able to reach the majors before turning 20?

    • bomberj11 5 years ago

      I think so.

    • without a doubt he’ll be up before he’s 20. He’s 17 now, will be signed to the Nats when he’s 17, and will start in the minors when he’s 18. I can’t see the Nats leaving him down there for a solid 2 full seasons. I will say this though, Buster Posey will be coming up soon, but has spent over a year in the minors. His only fallback so far is that the Giants want him to spend time catching pitchers consistently. If he was a 1B (which I think Harper could be), he will be up maybe before he’s 19

    • Depends whether they do the smart thing and make him a right fielder immediately, or whether they try to make him a catcher. He has a long way to go on his defense at catcher, and he may not even be able to stick there. If they make him an outfielder immediately, he could reach the majors before he turns 19.

    • Just_MLB 5 years ago

      I highly doubt it.

      if he tries to come up as a catcher, there are several variables and factors that play into it.

      Learning how to call pitches, how to handle pitches, throwing runners out that much faster than he has ever seen, the strain of an increased schedule and the effect it can have on offense.

      being a catcher is probably the most demanding of all positions in baseball, a catcher is in essence the quarterback of the team and his ability can affect everything from pitch count to a starters health, to a relievers confidence to infield/outfield defense.

      for example, if david ortiz is up at the plate and the shift is on, calling for a breaking ball on the outside corner of the plate will have a higher chance of resulting in a double if he goes with the pitch.

      If Harper is the self-centered egomaniac that people have reported him to be, he will wreck a staff behind the plate.

  3. bomberj11 5 years ago

    I wonder who it will be. You can only wonder…

  4. aap212 5 years ago

    They’ll probably go Mel Rojas Jr. or Delino Deshields Jr. They need the PR boost of connecting to their Expos roots.

  5. ruffintumble 5 years ago

    You know you’re getting old when you remember getting a Delino Deshields rookie card in packs of baseball cards, and now Delino Deshields Jr. is a draft prospect………..

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