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Telmito Agustin On The Verge Of Double-A

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Washington Nationals

Telmito Agustin's worldly experiences, including a successful winter in Colombia this offseason, have helped him improve his standing in the Nationals' organization and put him on the cusp of making his Double-A debut.

The 22-year-old outfielder spent the first 11 months of his life in the U.S. Virgin Islands but grew up in the Dominican Republic. When he was five years old, Agustin was introduced to baseball in the Invivienda sector of Santo Domingo by his older brother, Rafael Rodriguez Romero. Agustin was primarily an outfielder until he was 14, when he spent one year as a lefthanded pitcher.

"I feel like that year helped me with my throwing,” Agustin said through a translator. "I learned about pitchers’ routines, and their program really helped me with my agility and with working on weights.”

In October 2013, one day after his 17th birthday, Agustin signed with the Nationals. He climbed to high Class A Potomac by 2017, but he hit just .206/.257/.275 in 102 at-bats and was sent back down to low Class A Hagerstown.

After an offseason of workouts focusing on better identifying pitches, the 5-foot-10, 160-pound Agustin posted a .302/.368/.454 slash line in his return to Potomac in 2018. Despite dealing with a dislocated finger and a minor hamstring pull throughout the season, Agustin showed increased power potential to go along with his improved approach at the plate.

This winter in the Dominican Republic, Agustin went 1-for-4 in his one game with the Gigantes del Cibao. Then he moved on to the Tigres de Cartagena in the Colombian winter league, where he ranked second with a .341 batting average and 34 runs scored. Agustin said he learned from several older players in Colombia. Some, such as 28-year-old Nationals infielder Adrian Sanchez, weren’t even on his own team.

Agustin, who can play any of the three outfield positions but is now mostly a corner outfielder, still has above-average running ability and has now added more strength. He worked out with Double-A Harrisburg in spring training and even received two at-bats in major league spring games.

NOTES:

— The Nationals promoted Mike DeBartolo and Sam Mondry-Cohen to assistant general manager positions. DeBartolo had been director of baseball operations, and Mondry-Cohen was director of baseball research and development.

— The organization lost catcher Pedro Severino on waivers to the Orioles. The 25-year-old was out of minor league options. He hit .187/.273/.287 in 251 at-bats with Washington, which acquired veteran catchers Yan Gomes and Kurt Suzuki during the offseason.

Mike Rizzo Alextrautwiggetty

2019 MLB Executive Of The Year: Mike Rizzo

Rizzo comes from a family of scouts, but he built the franchise’s first World Series-winner with a blend of scouting, player development and analytics

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