The influx of super-prospects is beginning to grow larger by the day.
Los Angeles Dodgers’ super-prospect Julio Urias has already been called up to “The Show” twice, with a demotion sandwiched between. Texas Rangers’ slugger Joey Gallo has already seen a little (and, I mean little….only one at-bat) playing time in the Majors, before being sent back down.
Reportedly, next up on the list is Washington Nationals’ top prospect Trea Turner. The Nationals blog “Talk Nats” first reported the news on their Twitter account, while MLB.com’s Bill Ladson later confirmed that Turner would join the club tomorrow. In a corresponding move, first baseman Ryan Zimmerman is expected to be placed on paternity leave.
Zimmerman being on paternity leave means that he can miss “no more than three games”, according to league rules. That’s led to questions about how long Turner’s tenure will last in D.C. In the short time that Zimmerman is out, it seems likely that Daniel Murphy will take over at first base, while Turner fills in at the keystone. While his tenure could be short, this is a golden opportunity for Turner to show the Nationals why he could be a better choice at shortstop, over the struggling combo of Danny Espinosa and Stephen Drew.
For the season, Espinosa is hovering right at the Mendoza Line, owning a .200/.296/.341 slash with seven home runs and 21 RBIs. Meanwhile, Drew owns an anemic .173/.228/.365 slash with three homers and six runs driven in. Both have provided decent defense, but there’s obviously a lot left to be desired on the offensive side of the spectrum.
Turner, the ninth-ranked prospect in baseball according to MLB.com, has enjoyed a nice season with Triple-A Syracuse, slicing through pitching to the tune of a .310/.376/.472 slash, with three home runs, 24 RBIs, and 17 stolen bases. For his short career, Turner owns a career .319 batting average against minor league pitching, which suggests that he’s outgrown the minor leagues and is ready for a shot in the big leagues.
Service time has been an issue when it comes to Turner’s promotion, but it shouldn’t be an issue any longer. Turner no longer has the ability to log a full season of play this year, thus keeping him under Washington’s control through the 2022 season.
The Nationals will continue their series with the Cincinnati Reds on Friday.