MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Top pick Kieboom joins brother in Nats' pipeline

Top pick Kieboom joins brother in Nats' pipeline

WASHINGTON -- Infielder Carter Kieboom was never able to play with his older brother, Spencer, when they were growing up in Georgia because of the eight-year age difference between the two. But they will get a chance to play in the same organization once Carter signs with the Nationals, the team that drafted him in the first round of the 2016 Draft.

After he was selected on Thursday night, Carter heard from his older brother, who congratulated him.

"He told me to enjoy it," Carter said about Spencer's words of wisdom. "'Now you are ready to embark on one of the greatest dreams of your life. It will be a grind, but you play the game because you love it and have fun with it.'"

Kieboom said he will decide by Saturday on what he plans to do when it comes to his baseball career. He has a chance to attend Clemson University.

"Probably tomorrow, I will make that decision, but I'm very thankful to the Nationals' organization for giving me this opportunity I've been dreaming of my whole life," Kieboom said. "We'll find out tomorrow what the decision is."

If he decides to stay with the Nats, Kieboom sounds like a guy who is mature enough to play professional baseball.

"[I am] a player who understands the game very well at a mature level," Kieboom said. "I'm one that goes out and plays my game. I don't try to something that I'm not capable of."

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According to MiLB.com, Kieboom had the best at-bats in the Under Armour All-America Game in July, including an opposite-field single on a 98-mph fastball from Riley Pint, the top-rated high school right-hander, who was the No. 4 overall pick by the Rockies.

Kieboom is the first shortstop to be selected by Washington in the first round since Anthony Rendon in 2011.

Bill Ladson has covered the Nationals/Expos for MLB.com since 2002 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.