Nationals’ Andrew Pinckney Strives For Selective Aggression


Outfielder Andrew Pinckney attributes much of his success this season to “keeping the main thing as the main thing.”

The 23-year-old Alabama product batted .272/.319/.376 through 43 games for Double-A Harrisburg. He hit three home runs and stole 11 bases in 13 tries.

“I’m really just trying to swing at strikes,” Pinckney said. “There are a lot of good pitchers in Double-A right now. I’ve seen a lot of really good stuff from pitchers who will be in the big leagues, maybe even this year.

“I just need to lay off the soft stuff down and swing at my pitches.”

The strong-armed Pinckney played mostly center field at McIntosh High in Peachtree City, Ga., and then primarily right field at Alabama before the Nationals drafted him in the fourth round last year. He is playing mostly left field this season.

“He competes every day in the batter’s box, on the bases and in the outfield,” Nationals farm director Eddie Longosz said of the 6-foot-4, 215-pound Pinckney. “He has a very physical and strong frame and an outstanding work ethic.”

Pinckney entered college with academic scholarship money but no athletic scholarship help. His two walk-on offers were from Alabama and Kennesaw State.

Three years after not playing at all in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, he started all 64 games for a Crimson Tide team that reached super regionals. He received some scholarship money for baseball in his final year and earned a degree in management information systems.

Not playing for a year “was definitely was not the plan,” Pinckney said. “To get a chance to go to a big school like Alabama, you want to play right away. But it was a struggle for me. It was tough, but I didn’t want to transfer.”

Pinckney was born in Tuscaloosa and spent many holidays there after his family moved to Peachtree City. His father played baseball at Grambling, and his mother is an Alabama graduate.

“He has great discipline at the plate with tremendous hands through the zone,”Longosz said. “He makes contact with power. He’s looking for that extra-base hit every time when he gets out of the box.


Travis Sykora, a 6-foot-6 righthander drafted in the third round last year, made his pro debut at Low-A Fredericksburg. The 20-year-old from Round Rock (Texas) High had a 4.26 ERA with 16 strikeouts in his first 12.2 innings. “He has great extension and is an uncomfortable at-bat for hitters,” Longosz said. “He does a good job varying his timing to the plate—attacks hitters with his fastball and slider.”

— Outfielder Roismar Quintana hit for the first cycle in the four-year history of the Fredericksburg Nationals. He was hitting .250/.361/.393 through 33 games for the Low-A affiliate.

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