2012 MLB Season Preview: Washington Nationals

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2012 Prospect to Watch

I mean, come on, did you really think the top prospect in Washington wouldn’t be Bryce Harper? The overall first pick in the 2010

amateur draft will only be 19 years old this season, but it seems that he’s been ready for the big stage for some time now. In his first stop in 2011, he tore up opposing pitching with a .318 average, 14 home runs, and 46 RBI in 258 at-bats. After he was promoted to Double-A, he did struggle a bit, but did make a nice comeback before a hamstring injury shut him down. He was in Big League camp this spring, and even though he was just optioned to Triple-A, he has received the VIP treatment. He’s got great power, didn’t strike out very much, and showed his ability to get on base and make things happen.

Harper is by far one of the biggest keys for this Nationals offense in my eyes. Adam LaRoche will be manning first base for Washington, which forces Michael Morse back to the outfield. However, if LaRoche gets injured again or struggles out of the gate, I wouldn’t be surprised is Harper slides into the left field spot, moving Morse back to first. Harper can make the Nats’ line-up more dynamic with his left-handed bat. The biggest question is not if he will make it to the Show this year, but when.

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