MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo has updated his list of the game's 100 best prospects and each of the Nationals' first three draft picks in 2011 were included. Infielder Anthony Rendon, pitcher Alex Meyer, and outfielder Brian Goodwin were ranked with Lucas Giolito, regarded by Mayo as the team's fourth best prospect, left as the odd man out.
Rendon comes in at 37, likely because of his injury-plagued 2012 season. Rendon's stock was much higher a year ago when he was considered the best bat in the 2011 draft.
Mayo acknowledges the injury problems and then gives praise.
"When healthy, Rendon is a plus defender at third. At the plate, he has the kind of advanced approach that should allow him to move quickly while hitting for average and power," he said.
Rendon was promoted to Double-A Harrisburg in August and should start next season at one of the system's higher levels. He could be a good candidate for a call-up next season as well, possibly as early as June or July.
Meyer was ranked 57th by Mayo after having a sort of surprise season in the minors. He began at Hagerstown and dominated at the Low-A level with a 3.10 ERA and 107 strikeouts in 18 starts. He was then promoted to Potomac and pitched even better with a 2.31 ERA in seven outings. Across both levels of Single-A Meyer went 10-6 with a 2.86 ERA and 139 strikeouts in 129.0 innings.
Here is part of his take on Meyer:
"Very tall and lanky, Meyer still has plenty of room to add weight and strength to his 6-foot-9 frame. He has two plus pitches, a fastball up to 97 mph and a power slider (86-88 mph). He also added a changeup, and although its not as good as the two plus pitches, it has the chance to be an average pitch."
It should be noted Mayo has Meyer ahead of Kevin Gausman (63rd overall) who was picked fourth overall by the Baltimore Orioles in the 2012 draft.
Goodwin made the top 100 with an overall ranking of 74th. The 2011 pick is described by Mayo as a five-tool player who "could be a very good center fielder in time, and he also has the arm, as well as the bat, to move to a corner if need be." Goodwin hit .280 in 100 total games across Low-A Hagerstown and Double-A Harrisburg last season.
Mayo ranked a former Nationals prospect, A.J. Cole, at 98th. Cole was traded to the Oakland Athletics in a multi-player deal that landed Gio Gonzalez in Washington.
For Mayo's full list and his top 20 Nats prospects right here.