Best Washington Nationals Players

Elaine Sutton
• Tuesday, 01 December, 2020
• 7 min read

The 10 best players in Washington Nationals history | RUN Skip to main content Before moving to Washington after the 2004 season, the Montreal Expos were known as one of the most star-crossed franchises in baseball history.

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Despite the team's amazing talent and some best players ever, the Expos were never able to win a championship. The Expos of the early '80s featured two of the top players in Expos/ WashingtonNationals history in Gary Carter and Andre Dawson.

The 1994 Expos team was broken up due to the player's strike and economics. At the time of the strike, the Expos had the best record in baseball and appeared to be on a collision course with the New York Yankees or Chicago White Sox in that year's World Series.

That team featured some best players in team history including Pedro Martinez, Larry Walker, Marquis Frisson, John Wetland and Moises Aloud. After the strike, the team never recovered and moved to Washington and became the Nationals.

At this early stage in Nationals history, Zimmerman is considered one of the best players to play in Washington D.C. The Nationals have their hopes pinned to youngsters Stephen Strasbourg and Bryce Harper, both of whom were a part of the team's first National League East Division title in 2012, the franchise's first since 1981 in Montreal.

16 and the fifth- best starting pitcher; only Scherzo, Gerrit Cole, Jacob degree and Justin Overland ranked ahead of him. Strasbourg finished fifth in CY Young voting a year ago with a career-high 18 wins.

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His postseason run was one of the best in the sport's history, as the Nationals ace went 6-0 with a 1.97 ERA with 45 strikeouts and just four walks in October. The southpaw firmly cemented himself as the Nationals third starter, tying a career-high with 14 wins in 2019.

Corbin was extremely versatile for the Nationals last postseason, appearing both as a starter and out of the bullpen, most notably throwing three scoreless innings in relief in Game 7 of the World Series. Rising superstar outfielder Juan Soto was ranked 11th, while shortstop Area Turner came in at No.

The lefty slugged 34 home runs and notched 110 RBI's a season ago, and the Nationals are hoping for similar production in 2020, especially with the departure of Anthony Tendon. Turner dealt with multiple injuries a season ago, appearing in just 122 regular-season games while dealing with both hand and wrist issues.

Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device. From 00 to 99, Nationals players have chosen uniform numbers to represent themselves on the baseball field.

Here's a look back at the top players to wear each number since 2005. Uniform numbers worn by only one player in team history are marked with an asterisk.

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5: 3B June Escobar, 2015 Escobar ranked sixth in the NL in batting average (.314) and second in fielding among NL third basemen (.970) in his lone season with the Nationals. 6: 3B Anthony Tendon, 2013-19 Tendon slashed .290/.369/.490 with an .859 OPS and 136 home runs in 916 regular-season games to become an All-Star, a two-time Silver Slugger Award winner and an MVP Award candidate in Washington.

8: INF Danny Espinosa, 2012-16 Espinosa belted five home runs -- including two grand slams -- for 15 RBI's in a four-game series against the Reds during the 2016 season. 9: 3B Vinny Castilla, 2005 Castilla slashed .253/.319/.403, including hitting a double, triple and home run at the first game played at Nationals Park.

10: INF Ronnie Billiard, 2007-09 Billiard ranked second among NL second basemen in fielding percentage (.989) in 2007, while slashing .281/.338/.431 with a .768 OPS over two-plus seasons with the Nat's. 11: INF Ryan Zimmerman The Nationals first-ever Draft pick, Zimmerman is the team’s all-time leader in games played, hits, home runs, runs scored and WAR, among other categories.

12: OF Alfonso Soriano, 2006 An All-Star, a Silver Slugger Award winner and an MVP Award candidate, Soriano had a 40-40 performance in 2006 with 41 stolen bases, 41 doubles and 46 home runs, the most homers in a single season in Nat's history. 13: INF Adrenal Cabrera, 2019-20 Cabrera hit .323 with a .969 OPS in 2019, when he was acquired by the Nationals in August for their World Series championship push.

16: CF Victor Robles, 2018-present Robles was a Gold Glove Award finalist in 2019, leading all outfielders in outs above average and pacing NL center fielders in putouts and assists. 19: RHP Anibal Sánchez, 2019-20 A member of the 2019 World Series-winning starting rotation, Sánchez tallied a career- the best eight-game winning streak during the regular season (11-8, 3.85 ERA) and made three playoff starts.

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(Source: www.wruf.com)

20: INF Daniel Murphy, 2016-18 In 2016, Murphy hit .347 -- .001 shy of the best average in the Majors -- and led the NL in slugging percentage (.595), OPS (.985) and doubles (47). 22: OF Juan Soto, 2018-present After hitting five home runs in the 2019 World Series, Soto became the youngest player to win the NL batting title (.351), captured a Silver Slugger Award and received MVP Award votes in ‘20.

24: Nick Johnson, 2004-09 In addition to scoring the Nationals first run in team history, Johnson led the club in batting average in 2005 (.289) and ‘06 (.290). 29: RHP Rafael Soriano, 2013-14 Soriano earned a total of 75 saves (including the second most in the NL in 2013) over 132 appearances, posting a 7-4 record and 3.15 ERA.

31: RHP Max Scherzo, 2015-present Scherzo’s long list of accolades with the Nationals includes winning back-to-back CY Young Awards (2016-17) and throwing two no-hitters in ‘15. 34: RF Bryce Harper, 2012-18 Harper, the first overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft, was named Rookie of the Year (‘12), MVP (‘15), a Silver Slugger (‘15) and a six-time All-Star while wearing No.

36: Tyler Clipped, 2009-14 The reliever ranks first in games played (414) and ERA (2.68) among all Nationals pitchers. 38: Mike Morse, 2011-12 Morse received MVP Award votes in 2011, when he led the Nat's (and ranked ninth in the NL) with a .303 batting average.

40: C Wilson Ramos, 2013-16 Ramos was an All-Star, Silver Slugger Award winner and received MVP Award votes in 2016, when he batted .307 (ninth in the NL). 41: RHP Joe Ross, 2015-present Ross made a gutsy scratch start in Game 5 of the 2019 World Series, throwing five innings in place of Scherzo.

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45/46: LAP Patrick Corbin, 2019-present Corbin ranked fourth in strikeouts (238), fifth in WAR (5.6) and eighth in ERA (3.25) among NL pitchers in the 2019 championship season. 47 when he hit .344 in the 2019 regular season and delivered some of the franchise’s biggest at-bats as a playoff hero.

51: RHP Jon Ranch, 2005-08 Ranch led the 2008 Nationals with 17 saves in the final year of his tenure with the organization, which began in Montreal. 55: RHP Matt Camps, 2010 Camps earned an All-Star selection and pitched to a 3-3 record and 2.74 ERA with 26 saves before being traded in late July.

63, Doolittle led the NL with 55 games finished and was sixth in saves (29) in 2019. *88: OF Gerardo Parr, 2019 The 2019 World Series spark plug slashed .250/.300/.447 with eight home runs while giving the Nationals their “Baby Shark” championship anthem.

Who is stacked beneath pitchers such as Rutledge, Made Cavalry, Cole Henry and Andy Lara, among other arms? When these questions were posed to him, Mark Scalable, the Nationals assistant general manager in charge of player development, presented two middle infielders, a catcher, a left-handed-hitting first baseman and a trio of teenage outfielders.

But he was quick to mention Basel An tuna, a 21-year-old infielder from the Dominican Republic, and seemed very excited about how An tuna performed the past few months at the club’s alternate training site in Fredericksburg, Va., and in the fall instructional league in West Palm Beach, Fla. Jackson Cliff, the next player listed by Scalable, is a similarly versatile shortstop who bats from the left side.

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(Source: www.minorleagueball.com)

An tuna and Cliff fit one of the Nationals organizational trends: They like to collect and develop shortstops who can later move around the infield. And García, who was MLB’s youngest player for part of the summer, was the everyday second baseman after Stalin Castro broke his wrist.

After An tuna and Cliff, Scalable turned to Drew Mendoza, Israel Pined and those three young outfielders: Daniel Mate, 18; Jeremy De La Rosa, 18; and Roister Quinton, 17. Washington has keyed on him for a few years now, ever since he got regular starts with the Class A Auburn Doubleday's in 2018 and caught the front office’s attention.

If that trend holds, Pined is a few prospect cycles from being considered for the major league roster. “He has a knack for the barrel on the ball and uses the whole field and is starting to mature defensively,” Scalable said of Pined.

The same goes for Mate, De La Rosa and Quinton, except the Nationals typically move outfielders faster. With De La Rosa, a prospect Scalable first pointed to in the spring of 2019, the club sees athleticism and a developing left-handed bat.

And with Quinton, the youngest player Scalable named, the Nationals heard the right noises off his bat this fall. Remember, Scalable prefaced this by calling An tuna, Cliff, Mendoza and Pined “A-ball type players.” That means they’re not quite on the major league doorstep.

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His hands stay inside the baseball extremely well, he has a feel for the strike zone, and he had as loud of a bat that we had at our Instructional League camp.

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