In 17 days, all the Nationals diehards will be preparing to head to Nationals Park on Opening Day. Until then, we're going to predict the 25 man roster. With one catch. We're going to do it one day at a time. This way, we can provide more in depth thoughts on who we think is going to make the roster, why we think so, and what to expect from them in 2011. On the morning of Opening Day, we'll post the real 25-man compared with what we predicted.
Today, we add our youngest prediction to the list thus far: Danny Espinosa.
Why?: The easy answer to this is... who else? The Nationals have very few middle infielders in the organization that could even feign being ready for The Show. That said, we think that Espi is more than ready for this. He started his first year as a September call up, and we think that in a season that probably won't see the Nationals making any sort of post season push, Espinosa can use this time to really solidify himself as the team's next young stud.
What to expect?: Expect Espinosa to compliment his fellow middle infielder, Ian Desmond, very well over the course of the season. Espi will provide extremely solid defense and will probably be streaky at the plate in his "true" rookie season. Is it too early to expect Danny to be an NL Rookie of the Year candidate? Probably. But expect him to be in the conversation at some point this season.