Typically, the days surrounding each league’s All-Star break are also when organizations decide to make their first significant wave of promotions throughout the system. The Washington Nationals stayed true to form with the promotion of four players from Potomac on Thursday.
On the heels of third baseman Kelvin Gutierrez getting traded to the Kansas City Royals, the left side of the Harrisburg infield is getting a makeover as shortstop Carter Kieboom and third baseman Jake Noll will be penciled into the Senators’ lineup moving forward.
Kieboom, the Nationals #4-ranked prospect per Baseball America and younger brother of Spencer, has slashed .298/.386/.494 in 61 games with Potomac. The 20-year-old has shown patience at the plate to the tune of 36 walks against 50 strikeouts in his first taste of the High-A ball. Kieboom is also in the top five of the Carolina League with 11 home runs, 48 runs scored, and 46 runs driven in.
Noll, a seventh-round selection in the 2016 draft, has matched Kieboom in nearly every offensive category. The 24-year-old infielder has slashed .302/.353/.460 with twelve doubles, eight homers, 47 runs scored, and 46 driven in for Potomac.
Both infielders also played in the Carolina League All-Star Game held on Tuesday night at Five County Stadium in Zebulon, North Carolina.
Also getting promoted to Harrisburg is Alec Keller, who spent all of 2017 with the Senators before going down with a hip injury in mid-July . The Princeton product has bounced back with a .340 batting average and eight extra-base hits in only 29 games with the P-Nats.
After missing the entire 2017 season due to injury, Tyler Mapes has also shown he’s healthy as the right-hander is 6-1 with a 1.76 ERA and 1.01 WHIP in 12 starts for Potomac earning a promotion back to Double-A. In 66.1 innings, Mapes has walked only 15 batters and struck out 52 including nine in his last start, a 9-inning complete game shutout.