September Callup Candidates For The Nationals: Washington With A Great 36 Game Sked To End 2013

The Nationals will need a massive collapse from either the Pirates, Reds or Cardinals in order to qualify for the Post Season in 2013.  Despite the struggles, the club still has to go about the business of preparing a 40 Man Roster in September.  Lets preview some of the news, injured players coming back, and recent performances of some of the guys in the Minor League System.

At 62 – 64 with 36 games left, The Nationals will need a massive collapse from either the Pirates, Reds or Cardinals in order to qualify for the Post Season in 2013 being 10.5 Games behind the playoff bar. Despite the struggles, the club still has to go about the business of preparing a 40 Man Roster in September. Lets preview some of the news, injured players coming back, and recent performances of some of the guys in the Minor League System.

By Sean Hogan (Nationals Correspondent via Citizens of Natstown.com – view website here): 

September is just 10 days away. With 9 games in those 10 days, a lot of things can happen with the Nats. They can still go on a run and get back into the thick of things in the Wild Card race.

The reason for this is easy…. The Pirates, Cardinals and Reds are play each other a pile in the last 5 weeks of the year, so all the Nationals have to do is to take care of business, and they can be back in the conversation for the playoff game at least.

The Nats also have a ridiculously easy schedule coming from now until the end of the year in their final 36 games. 

Coming up.  1 more @CHC, 3 @KC (they are struggling now), then a 6 game homestand versus the Marlins and Mets.   They should go 7 – 3 here.

From there, they have a 10 game road trip with 3 @PHI, 3 @MIA and 4 @NYM.  The team could go 7 – 3.

Followed by the road trip is a 10 game homestand:  3 VS PHI, 3 VS ATL (they may have clinched by then – or at least resting guys), and to vs the Marlins ends the stretch.  The team could go 8 – 2.

The Nats end up playing their last 6 on the road versus the Cardinals and Diamondbacks in 3 game series each.  If they win both series, it could be a 4 – 2 road trip. 

You could see the club win 26 of their last 36 games – to have them equal 88 wins.  The Pirates would need to win 15 games out of 36 in this scenario.

While it would still make it unlikely to be in the Wild Card Game, it could put some pressure on the 3 NL Central franchises.

The Cardinals would have to win 16 out of 36 games to stay ahead, and the Reds would need 17 wins out their last 35 games to stay head.

They could also go on a losing streak and drop out of the race just as easily. For the most part, the Nats’ September call-up candidates will be the same, but their eventual roles may differ.

The only player on the 40-man roster that I don’t think has a chance of making it to the Majors in September is Matt Purke, who has always struggled with injuries and is just starting to hack it in high A ball.

Jeff Kobernus – 1st Career HR

Danny Espinosa had best start producing for this talented Washington Nationals club.  he's still not hitting well in the minors (.211/.281/.289 overall, .212/.298/.240 since the all-star break, .260/.339/.300  in August).

Danny Espinosa had best start producing for this talented Washington Nationals club. he’s still not hitting well in the minors (.211/.281/.570 overall, .212/.298/.538 since the all-star break, .260/.339/.639 in August).

Minor League Numbers were compiled as of Aug.16/2013

Obvious candidates

RHP Ryan Mattheus – He was just sent down yesterday to make room for Drew Storen. I’ve never been a huge fan of Mattheus because I don’t trust relievers who don’t strike guys out, but he’s traditionally been one of Davey’s go-to guys (before punching a locker, at least), and will be back.

LHP Xavier Cedeno – He’s on the 40-man roster and has already been called up to the bigs this year. Cedeno has handled his AAA opposition pretty well this year, putting up a 1.50 ERA and 3.07 FIP.

His control hasn’t been great (4.8 BB/9), but he’s striking out a more-than-impressive 11.7 per nine to help balance it out. He’s a lock for a call-up.

RHP Erik Davis – Just like Cedeno, he’s on the 40-man and has been called up this year. He’s got a hilarious 6.23 ERA and 0.50 FIP (neither of which are typos) in the big leagues this year and a 3.09 ERA/3.31 FIP in AAA that makes much more sense.

Davis has almost a 3:1 K/BB in the minors this year and has succeeded despite an unlucky .341 BABIP. He’s a healthy candidate for a 2014 bullpen spot and will have plenty of chances to audition next month.

1B Chris Marrero – He’s hacking it okay in AAA this year (.276/.324/.419) and has made it up to the bigs this year. He’ll be auditioning for a bench spot next year. Also on the 40-man.

UTIL Jeff Kobernus – Kobernus will be up as a super utility guy. His inclusion to September’s roster gives the Nats an option allowing them to shut down Espinosa if necessary. He’s still hitting over his head in AAA (.327/.371/.395 in 341 plate appearances), but the defense and speed are real.  Also on the 40-man.

1B/OF Tyler Moore – Davey seems to be suggesting that Moore makes it up before September. He’s currently at .314/.393/.568 in 196 AAA plate appearances and will get plenty of opportunities in the big leagues between now and the end of the year.  Also on the 40-man.

OF Eury Perez – I’ve never been a huge fan of Perez, but I have to give him props for developing some power (7 HR this year after only having 11 in the rest of his career). He’s at .301/.334/.429 this year and will be up predominantly as a pinch runner and defensive replacement.  Also on the 40-man.

Returning from the DL

If Ross Detwiler, Christian Garcia and Ross Ohlendorf get healthy, they’ll all be up.

Potential Candidates

IF Danny Espinosa – His glove will probably get him back up for September, but I think there’s also a greater than zero chance that he’s shut down to get healthy.  Also on the 40-man.

SS Zach Walters – In my opinion, he and Rhymes are the only non-40 man candidates to be added to the September roster. His .254/.285/.541 triple slash is both awful and awesome, and he has 28 HR. The 15 BB/116 K ratio needs to burn, though.

2B Will Rhymes – The former Tiger and Ray has a .281/.365/.353 triple slash and an amazing 57/25 BB/K ratio this year. He can fill in at 2B and 3B to spell Rendon and Zimmerman and could serve as a good contact/on base lefty off of the bench.

OF Corey Brown – Brown could have helped the Nats weeks ago as a lefty option off of the bench (#FREECOREYBROWN). He’s been just okay in AAA this year (.241/.303/.467), but his career numbers are much better, so I’ll chalk it up to being a partial aberration. He’s got plenty of pop still and has a history of good plate patience. He’s on the 40-man.

RHP Nate Karns – He was bad in his 3 ML starts (7.50 ERA, 8.38 FIP in 12 innings), but got pretty unlucky with homers (3.75 HR/9 ain’t gonna stick). Karns’ 20 AA starts look much better, with a 3.45 ERA, 3.48 FIP, 10.58 K/9 and 3.53 BB/9. He’s a candidate to replace Taylor Jordan in the rotation once he’s shut down, but could also contribute in the bullpen. Also on the 40-man.

LHP Tyler Robertson – As guys on the 40-man go, he’s the second least likely to make the September roster after Purke. Robertson has a decent ERA (3.63) and improved control (7.0 BB/9 with Minnesota’s AAA squad this year, 3.3 with Syracuse), but is still a mediocre option where the Nats already have some decent depth (Krol, Abad and Cedeno are all ahead of him).

C Jhonatan Solano – Either Solano or Leon will make the playoff roster. I’d say Solano has probably an 80% chance, but he’s struggled with injuries and poor performance this year, hitting just .211/.244/.274 in 136 PA in Syracuse. He’s on the 40-man.

C Sandy Leon – Leon is currently under the Mendoza line for AA Harrisburg, but is at least taking enough walks to not be a total zero at the plate (.194/.303/.277 in 323 plate appearances). He’s still the Nats’ backup of the future over Solano, but is still not quite ready. He’s on the 40-man.

Drew Storen had a horrific start to the year, so much so, that the Nats sent him down to the Minor Leagues - which seems to have  straigthened him out. Since he was recalled, he has thrown 4 innings, and only allowed 1 hit and 0 Walks.  That has to be satisfying after yielding back to back 3 ER outings in consecutive appearances during July - leading to his demotion.

Drew Storen had a horrific start to the year, so much so, that the Nats sent him down to the Minor Leagues – which seems to have straightened him out. Since he was recalled, he has thrown 4 innings, and only allowed 1 hit and 0 Walks. That has to be satisfying after yielding back to back 3 ER outings in consecutive appearances during July – leading to his demotion.

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

A big thank-you goes out to our ‘Nationals Correspondent’ Sean Hogan  for preparing today’s featured article.  Sean is a Pro bono sports writer for Citizens of Natstown,and also writes for his own place on the internet at   http://dcisforbaseball.blogspot.com   

You can follow Sean  Twitter and talk about the game of baseball – which he says about 99% of his twitter and his life revolve around America’s favoritepast time.  

a   sean hogan vt

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About chuckbooth3023

I played competitive baseball until 18 years old and had offers to play NCAA Division 1 University Baseball at Liberty University. Post-concussion symptoms from previous football and baseball head injuries forced me to retire by age 19. After two nearly made World Record Attempts in 2008, I set a New World Record by visiting all 30 MLB Parks (from 1st to last pitch) in only 24 Calendar Days in the summer 0f 2009. In April of 2012, I established yet another new GWR by visiting all 30 Parks in only 23 Calendar Days! You can see the full schedule at the page of the www.mlbreports.com/gwr-tracker . In 2015, I watched 224 MLB Games, spanning all 30 MLB Parks in 183 Days. Read about that World Record Journey at https://mlbreports.com/183in2015/229sked2015/

Posted on August 22, 2013, in MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on September Callup Candidates For The Nationals: Washington With A Great 36 Game Sked To End 2013.

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