Nationals Sending Four Prospects To Hawaii

After a nine year hiatus, the Hawaiian Winter League has returned and the Nationals have wasted no time getting their players involved. CapitolDugout.com has learned that Washington will be sending four of their top minor league prospects to play in the league. Find out more about which players are on their way to Hawaii, what team they'll play for, and more.

The Nationals will be sending four of their finest young prospects to the newly reopened Hawaiian Winter Baseball League. Devin Ivany, Ian Desmond, Adam Carr, and Marco Estrada will all be reporting to the WaiKiKi Beach Boys on September 27th. The regular season is set to begin on October 1st when the Beach Boys will take on the Honolulu Sharks.

To take a closer look at the players who the Nationals will be sending to the Hawaiian Winter League, we'll examine each one of them individually and discuss how their performance may impact their future in professional baseball.

Devin Ivany, C - The Nationals are thrilled with the way that Devin Ivany has developed offensively and behind the plate in 2006. He's shown much more consistency at the plate, and according to minor league field coordinator, Scott Little, he projects to be, at worst, a backup catcher at the big league level. But, with his development as a hitter, his future is beginning to look even brighter. With Potomac this season, the 24-year-old hit a solid .262 with 6 home runs 55 RBI. Surprisingly, he also swiped 12 bases. In the long run, his ticket figures to be his outstanding defense, but with a strong offensive showing in the Hawaiian League, Ivany's stock could skyrocket.

Ian Desmond, SS - Highly touted shortstop Ian Desmond will have a lot riding on his Hawaiian League campaign. He has struggled to meet his potential both offensively and defensively here in 2006, but showed signs of putting things together late in the season. With the additions of highly regarded shortstop prospects, Stephen King and Esmailyn Gonzalez, this will be a very important few months for the career of the 20-year-old Desmond. For Potomac, the righty hitting shortstop hit .244 with 9 home runs and 45 RBI. He still has youth on his side and the Nationals believe in his ability so a strong winter league season could put him back on track in a hurry.

Adam Carr, RHP/DH - Perhaps the most intriguing of all the players being sent by the Nationals, Adam Carr has shown tremendous upside both on the mound and at the plate. It is believed that the Nationals see him as a pitcher for the long haul, but he may end up being one of the best hitting pitchers in baseball. He still has a very fresh arm and Washington would like to see him log some more innings this winter. If he performs well, he could be fast tracked in 2007. There has been no confirmation regarding whether Carr will also get the opportunity to use his potent bat in Hawaii.

Marco Estrada, RHP - Estrada saw very little action in 2006 after being slowed by injuries along the way, so the Nats are looking for a way to get the former 6th round pick some more innings before heading into next season. At 23-years-old, Estrada will need to make his move quickly to make an impact with the Nationals and the hope is that the Hawaiian League will be a step in the right direction.

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