Friday, September 01, 2006

NIH: The New Kid

Most Nats fans have probably woken up this morning to see the news that Anderson and Ward were both traded for pitching prospects. And yes, it's already time to be writing an NIH post about the kids.

The pitcher we got for Anderson is just fine.

The guy we got for Ward, though, is one Luis Atilano. The kid's history: he was a first round draft pick in 2003 (mid-20s overall pick), and has been working his way through the Braves minor league clubs, going one level a year. '03 saw him in GCl, '04 in a short season A, '05 with the A level Sally League, and '06 with the Advanced-A Myrtle Beach Pelicans. (Trivia: The Pelicans are the only Atlanta affiliate not named the Braves. Good for them.)

However, his season ended short this year thanks to Tommy John surgery. He went under the knife on August 10th, which means that his 2006 is over, as is his 2007. He'll be reporting to the Nationals minor leagues no sooner than 2008, though with an arm that should be stronger (common misconception is that Tommy John makes your arm stronger, when in reality it's the recovery regimine that does it). Probably the soonest he'll compete for a rotation spot would be 2009, but more realisitically 2010 or 2011.

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