MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Ex-first-rounder, toolsy teen best Nats prospects

Ex-first-rounder, toolsy teen best Nats prospects

WASHINGTON -- Right-hander Lucas Giolito and outfielder Victor Robles were named by MLB.com as the best pitching and hitting prospects, respectively, in the Nationals' organization.

Giolito, the team's No. 1 prospect according to MLB.com, split time with Class A Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg, going a combined 7-7 with a 3.15 ERA and 131 strikeouts in 117 innings. A first-round pick in the 2012 Draft, Giolito, 21, has recovered from Tommy John surgery, which was performed that same year.

"He is very confident in his stuff, which is very special," said Bob Boone, the team's vice president of player personnel. "He has a real special breaking ball along with his command. The few games that he didn't pitch well, his command was off a little bit, but the stuff was always there. But for his age, he was impressive as far as how good he can locate the ball to go with the stuff."

Boone called Robles a five-tool player. According to Boone, Robles has "great power, a great arm and great first-step quickness in the outfield." Signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2013, Robles, 18, had a season to remember this year. He hit a combined .352 with four home runs, 27 RBIs and 24 stolen bases for the Gulf Coast Nationals and Class A Auburn.

Boone declined to say when Robles will reach the big leagues, but "I think he will move through the organization comfortably," Boone said.

Robles is considered the seventh-best prospect in the Nationals' organization.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All theTime. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.