Legends On Deck

LOD’s 2018 Top Prospects: Washington Nationals – Corner Infield

During the 2017-2018 offseason, we here at LOD are putting together a different kind of prospect list than you’re used to seeing. As opposed to typical prospect rankings, we are going position by position to give you the names to look out for in the upcoming season. Keep checking back to see if your favorite player makes our 2018 Top Prospect Team. You can view previous team previews by Clicking Here.

As we move along in our 2018 Washington Nationals top prospect preview, we now turn our attention to LOD’s pick for the top corner infielder in the system.  

Third Base / Shortstop – Yasel Antuna – 2017 Team: GCL Nationals (Rookie)

2017 Statistics: .301/.382/.399, .781 OPS, 1 HR, 17 RBI, 5 SB

You’ll notice that Antuna is listed above as “3B/SS”. If you visit his MiLB.com page, you will see he is listed there as a shortstop. While Antuna was signed out of his native Dominican Republic for a huge signing bonus to play up the middle, I think in the long run he will make the transition to third. For that reason, he is the subject of our corner infielder post.
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Antuna signed prior to the 2017 campaign and the Nationals brought him to the States to play in the GCL in his first season. The 18 year old had a good showing in his first go at affiliated ball where he finished in the top 15 in both batting average and on base percentage in the GCL. While he didn’t slug at the rate he would have hoped for, there was plenty of pop in his bat and proof that he will grow into more power down the road.

Antuna struggled with the glove in his first pro season. He played 21 games at short and 15 at third and while the fielding percentage wasn’t great at either position, it was a little bit better at the hot corner. He isn’t the rangiest player and at 6’0 170 pounds, he may grow into some more size that would affect him in the field as well. However, Antuna is extremely athletic so he will certainly be able to hold down the hot corner, his strong arm doesn’t hurt his case either.

Jake Berry
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