Baker, Werth impressed by Giolito in live BP

Baker, Werth impressed by Giolito in live BP

VIERA, Fla. -- Nationals right-hander Lucas Giolito, the team's top prospect, according to MLB.com, threw live batting practice on Saturday afternoon and faced Bryce Harper, Tyler Moore, Trea Turner, Jayson Werth and Chris Heisey. The hitters weren't taking many swings against the right-hander, mostly just getting a look at what Giolito was throwing.

Afterward, Giolito said he didn't feel that he was around the strike zone. But Werth said he felt uncomfortable when he was in the batter's box.

"The thing I notice was, when the ball comes out, he was throwing pretty hard," Werth said. "The big thing was the arm slot. I know he throws that curveball out of there. It's not a comfortable arm slot. The guy throws hard. If he throws that hook out of that same spot, it's going to be challenging. It's not what you want to face. It's early, we'll catch up eventually. For a young kid, it was impressive."

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Manager Dusty Baker also is impressed by what he has seen from the 21-year-old Giolito. The skipper said, "Giolito is pretty cool for his age," also telling Harper the two could be teammates for a long time.

"The guy has a quick arm, good body, good demeanor, and he's a very bright young man," Baker said about Giolito. "Washington is really going to love him when he gets there."

Moore was seen working out at third base on Saturday. By adding another position to his resume, it could help Moore make the club, according to Baker. Moore has played first base and the corner-outfield spots since 2012. However, he has had trouble hitting consistently off the bench.

"If he could [play third base], it would give him the best chance to try and make this club," Baker said. "I'm trying to give him a good opportunity. You want as many interchangeable parts as you can on the team. I haven't really seen him play, so I have to go by what he has done in the past, the opinion of others here, and what I see here in Spring Training."

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