Ranking the best rebuilding teams in Major League Baseball

Sep 5, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Cubs first baseman Frank Schwindel (18) is greeted after hitting a grand slam home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the seventh inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 5, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Cubs first baseman Frank Schwindel (18) is greeted after hitting a grand slam home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the seventh inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /
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Aug 3, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) hits a single against the Philadelphia Phillies during the sixth inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 3, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) hits a single against the Philadelphia Phillies during the sixth inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /

#6: Washington Nationals

Juan Soto basically carries this team past the others you have seen so far because the odds of any of their players reaching his level is incredibly slim.

As for the rest of the lineup, they have a solid two-man game behind the dish with Keibert Ruiz and Riley Adams. Ruiz looks likely to stick there as the long-term option. Adams has struggled defensively as a catcher. However, if he can maintain his high level offensively production, a WRC+ at least over 120, he could be moved to be the designated hitter or an outfielder as he would have a decent arm. Extending Josh Bell would be a good shout as he proved last season he can be an above-average hitter.

There are some questions marks as how other guys will perform around the rest of the lineup though with Carter Kieboom and Luis Garcia in the infield with a stop gap at second in Cesar Hernandez. Plus the outfield having essentially an empty bat in Victor Robles, despite his amazing fielding, and a maybe for left with Yadiel Hernandez as he wasn’t bad across 112 major league games. That really isn’t much here though to surround one of the best hitters in baseball.

The rotation is a strange one to try and work out. Patrick Corbin is making big bucks with not good production, but has been a top guy in the past. Strasburg hasn’t really played since 2019 and Josiah Gray will most likely need some time to settle in. After that, not much is there to help immediately. Cade Cavalli and Jackson Rutledge could come up some time this season but have a good amount of command issues to work out before they get major league innings.

Trevor Story could really help this team’s infield problems, as could Carlos Correa if they want to spree for him. They do already have big contracts with Strasburg and Corbin that don’t look great for the remaining years so they might be hesitant to go for the big guns. Any of Conforto, Bryant, Castellanos, or bringing back Schwarber would provide this lineup with a lot more firepower.

Carlos Rodon is probably the best pitcher on the market to go all out for, or they could go for stop gaps like Zack Greinke, Matt Boyd, Tyler Anderson, or Chris Archer.

Washington really just started their rebuild during last season after selling off Max Scherzer and Trea Turner so it is early for them. Locking up Juan Soto for the foreseeable future and then moving forward with him as the centerpiece will be what makes them a playoff and World Series contender once again.