2012 Draft Report Cards: Washington Nationals

Follow me on Twitter


The Nationals used two-thirds of their bonus pool to sign Giolito for $2.925 million. They knew the injury risk, and the success of their draft will hinge on his ability to recover his pre-injury form.
Bonus spending: $4.9 million
Best Pure Hitter:
2B Tony Renda (2) is undersized, but he's a gritty performer with excellent bat control. Best Power Hitter: OF Brandon Miller(^) (4) led NCAA Division I with 23 homers at Samford in the spring. His raw power grades as a 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale. Fastest Runner: OF Hayden Jennings (6) has plus speed and doubled as a wide receiver in high school. SS Stephen Perez (8) is also an above-average runner. Best Defensive Player:Perez plays with flair at shortstop. He has quick, flashy hands and can make difficult plays, though he needs to improve his consistency. Cs Spencer Kieboom (5) and Craig Manuel (10) are sound defenders behind the plate. Kieboom threw out 43 percent of basestealers at short-season Auburn, while Manuel erased 41 percent.


Best Fastball:
RHP Lucas Giolito (1) pitched from 92-100 mph in the spring before spraining the ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. The injury took him out of the running to be the No. 1 overall pick and eventually required Tommy John surgery in August after he pitched two innings as a pro. RHP Derek Self (9) boosted his fastball from 87-91 mph in 2011 to 92-95 in 2012. LHP Brett Mooneyham (3) once touched 97 mph but ranges from 91-94 these days. Best Secondary Pitch:Giolito also has two plus secondary pitches in his hard curveball and changeup.


Best Pro Debut:
Self's 14 saves tied for the short-season New York-Penn League lead. Miller hit .292/.354/.549 with 18 extra-base hits in 29 games at Auburn. Best Athlete:Perez has the potential for average or better tools across the board, though he frustrated scouts by underachieving during his college career at Miami. Most Intriguing Background:Giolito's parents, Rick Giolito and Lindsay Frost, are actors who have appeared on several television shows. Giolito and Max Fried (Padres) are the seventh pair of prep teammates taken in the first round of the same draft. Mooneyham's father Bill played in the majors, as did unsigned 2B Jake Jefferies' (34) dad Gregg, a two-time all-star. Unsigned SS Ricky Gutierrez (40) is a wide receiver at Connecticut and another son of a big leaguer (Ricky). Closest To The Majors:Self and RHP Robert Benincasa (7) could be fast-tracked as relievers. Giolito should move quickly once he returns to health. Best Late-Round Pick: LHP R.C. Orlan (30) had Tommy John surgery in June, but the Nationals are excited about his potential. When healthy, he has an 88-93 mph fastball, a hard curveball and a bulldog mentality. The One Who Got Away: RHP Freddy Avis (25) could have gone in the top two rounds if he hadn't been so strongly committed to Stanford.