• Nationals Director of Player Development Doug Harris joined Jim Duquette and Mike Ferrin on MLB Radio’s Power Alley last week and discussed the farm system, Anthony Rendon (’12), and Brian Goodwin (’12).
On the depth of the farm system after the Gio Gonzalez trade
“We’re very blessed with the players we have in here. As a player development guy Jim you know this very well, it’s very difficult to part with those young men. You get an attachment to them. They’re all very talented kids. The onus is on us in the player development department to develop the next players. It’s kind of like the Ravens said the other day, it’s next man up. The onus is on us to keep the ball rolling.”
On Anthony Rendon
“He’s a very gifted young man. I think everybody knows that. For him, it’s just keeping him on the field and getting him repetitions to put him in a position to help our big league club. I think early on we challeged him with some steps that were aggressive but gave him a taste of what he was going to be seeing in the Arizona Fall League. But once he piled on some at-bats in the Arizona Fall League he really settled in and we began to see what type of player he has the chance to be. ”
On the possibility of Rendon playing other positions
“Athletically he certainly can. From an internal standpoint we’ve had some dialogue along those lines and it’s probably something we’ll kick the tires on early in camp and see where it goes. But at this point our focus is to get him on the field and piling on those at-bats and letting him play.”
On Brian Goodwin
“We challenged Brian last year taking the double step from Low-A to Double-A. Part of the rationale behind that was he really had such a great feel for the strike zone and his approach was very simple. He had a compact, short swing to give him a chance to compete at that level. As a whole, Brian’s got a chance to do a lot of things within the context of the game. Scouts talk about five tools and he will show you parts of all five of them on any given day. He’s a very good defender, he can throw, he can run, he’s got some power, and he’s got a chance to be a top of the lineup, leadoff type guy. As far as the timeline, we’re going to put him in a position to be successful when he gets to the big leagues. Having acquired Denard Span allows us a little more time to do that. He’s got a chance to be a really exciting player when it’s all said and done…He hasn’t played a lot of baseball coming into professional baseball, and as you said we’re scratching the surface right now on what his ceiling could be. Another exciting part for us is Brian has the personality and makeup that matches the ability. Jim you know that when those things come together, you’ve got a chance to have a very special young man.”
• The Senators’ family took part in this past weekend’s Polar Bear Plunge held on City Island to benefit the local chapter of the Special Olympics. GM Randy Whitaker judged the costume contest and Rascal cheered on the 1,056 crazies who braved the elements and took the plunge. The event raised over $160,000 for the Special Olympics Pennsylvania Area M which covers Cumberland, Dauphin, Perry and northern York counties.
• Mexico’s Yaquis de Obregon topped the Dominican Republic’s Escogido Leones squad 4-3 in an epic 18-inning marathon to win this year’s Caribbean Series. Ricardo Nanita (’09) sent the game into extra innings when he launched a leadoff homerun off Luis Ayala in the bottom of the ninth to knot the score at two. Also on the losing side were Luis Jimenez (’08) who went 2-for-3 and Jhonny Nunez (’08) who recorded two outs in the top of ninth inning.
• On Saturday, February 16th, the Senators will be holding their annual job fair for part-time and game day employees at Metro Bank Park between 10am and 2pm. They are looking to fill positions such as ushers, seat attendants, ticket scanners, and concessions employees. The Senators game entertainment department will also be interviewing for the promo team and video board/camera operators. For more information contact Jonathan Boles at 717-231-4444 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Old Faces, New Places
• Tim Pahuta (’10-’12) has signed on with the Sioux Falls Fighting Pheasants of the independent Northern League.
• The York Revolution have re-signed Yunior Novoa (’08-’10) for 2013 after he posted a 2-6 record and 4.71 ERA for the team last season.
• After a season cut short by injury, Mike Ballard (’12) has signed with the Taiwanese team Brother Elephants of the Chinese Professional Baseball League.